Queer Women in the Humanities: The Job Market, Part 1

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Queer Women in the Humanities: The Job Market, Part 1

queer woman in academia that you'd like to share with our community, please contact me (marcie[ at ]velvetparkmedia.com or via La Facebook).

Queer Scholar 1

Deets: 2 years out of English PhD program, in 2-year a Visiting Assistant Professorship in a Women’s Studies department (just extended to a third year), about to go on job market for fourth time.

Location, Location, Location.

I have only applied, and only will apply, for academic jobs in places where I would actually want to live. This means I haven’t gotten anything to follow up my current temporary gig, and that I may at some point have to pull the plug on having a TT [tenure-track] job in my field. But after moving to this small post-industrial city, I got a LOT more selective about where I applied. The cost of leaving a real city, a place where I feel life happening around me on a daily basis, is too great. Not everyone is city-oriented, and good places could also include vibrant college towns. But one of the things I’ve found that I really, REALLY hate about being an academic outside of a Big City is *only* socializing with other academics, who are largely an extremely heteronormative bunch. I miss having friends who are actors, schoolteachers, lawyers, activists, waiters, cooks, and sex workers.

My advice would be to know yourself and what makes you happy—being able to afford a big awesome house? Farmland? Hot bars? A great music scene? Your community of people you love, where you’ve put down roots and don’t want to leave? And insist, in what jobs you apply for and what jobs you take, in adhering to those personal requirements. If you get an interview, visit the town in question, off the school’s radar, if at all possible; or, go on a google streetview armchair tour, read local websites, and get a sense of what life is like there. I know there are people, arguably better cut out for academia than I am, who have more of a sense of vocation independent of where they live—people for whom their colleagues and their department’s research support would