Always interruptable

I'm halfway through reading Sarah Knott's Mother: An Unconventional History (published elsewhere as Mother is a Verb). This was initially homework for the academic identities cultural history project—each member of the team read a different book (there's a cultural history of almost everything you can imagine: sex, food, weather, places, objects, actions)—but I have become … Continue reading Always interruptable

Staying in place

I taught my first tutorial at my current university eighteen years ago. In academia, there's something shameful in admitting you've stayed in one university. Being deeply rooted is an anathema in higher education. I have been on the receiving end of this advice many times: if you want to succeed/ thrive/ stay employed, you must … Continue reading Staying in place

On this side

I've enjoyed reading recent blog posts on how to say 'no' in academic work contexts from Research Whisperer Tseen Khoo ('Leveling up in saying no') and Conference Inference's James Burford ('Saying no to conference opportunities'). Saying no is invaluable, and I liked the intentionality Tseen and James demonstrate. Our time and energy are finite, even … Continue reading On this side

Wearing academic life

The prompt for my recent Making ShiFt Happen panel discussion with Catherine Manathunga and Janet Hope was: Reimagining academia ... Like [the pleasure of wearing] a loose-fitting garment – finding liberating and enabling ways to wear an academic life During the session I spoke of my maternal grandmother, a dress-maker who created garments for my … Continue reading Wearing academic life

Whose good university?

Last week I attended The Future of Academic Work: A deliberative conference at the University of Technology, Sydney. Its focus was a research project examining specific teaching-focussed, entry-level, continuing or fixed term (rather than sessional or casual) academic positions at Australian universities: The new Scholarly Teaching Fellow (STF) role was introduced into Australian universities in … Continue reading Whose good university?

Generous scholarship

Yesterday morning I received the gift of time—a cancelled meeting due to systemic technical problems which also meant tasks on my to do list could not be completed. How to spend this time? Drinking tea and reading. Thanks to a birthday present from my children, and books received as payment for a proposal review, I … Continue reading Generous scholarship