Re: tenure & potty training

Michael J. Salvo (
Thu, 26 Sep 1996 15:13:11 -0600

At 09:34 AM 9/26/96 -0500, Eric Crump wrote:
>These prerequisites to privilege are the shoehorns of the educational
>system (as we skip lightly to the next metaphor). But the system is not a
>penny loafer. It's a wing-tip. Nobody's feet will naturally slide right
>in. They all have to be made to fit, and then the feet are shaped by the
>shoe and the shoe by the feet.

funny, i own more pairs of english-made wingtips than any other kind of shoe
-- i just don't polish them -- ever -- and people make judgements about me
based on *that*. its not just the systems we inhabit (and how they inhabit
us) but the way in which we keep them up. do we work to reform our
institutions and have them evolve over time or do we call in the wrecking
crew when we decide to move on? we seem to love big machines.

i've got a big problem with current debate (defined as broadly as possible).
it isn't even debate. instead of dialogue, different sides produce
competing discourses. neither side in this current tenure fight,
administration or professoriate, is to blame, but dialogue -- interacting
discourse -- is totally lost. it happens on the list(s) and it happens in
our lives -- think of the presidential maddness. nobody speaks with anyone
-- they talk AT each other. soundbites in place of communication.

seems to me our culture has taken the problem of linguistic slippage and
decided that rather than do the hard work of communicating with words, we've
all chosen to accept language as bludgeons to be weilded against perceived
enemies. and then we find out how close our constructed "sides'" goals

sick of the rancor,