Sunday, May 12, 2019

Andrew Kay: "Academe's Extinction Event: Failure, Whiskey, and Professional Collapse At The MLA"

Worth a read.
Also, taught me a new stupid, trendy word: 'capitalocene'.
My half-assed take is that academia isn't dying, the humanities (and humanity-like social sciences) are. The humanities aren't inherently bullshit, but there's always some bullshit in them--absent any way to test their claims, they always hover in the vicinity of bullshit. And the weaker and more literary humanities are crapifying themselves to death, mostly by accepting the postpostmodern mishmash of bad continental philosophy and far left politics. Spending a great deal of your life studying literature is already a rather dicey game. Turn it into studying Foucault, feminism, and critical race theory and you're absolutely guaranteed to have wasted your time on Earth. Even philosophy, which resisted longer than most of the humanities, is sliding into that abyss. If undergraduates are sharp enough to recognize bullshit when they smell it, then more power to 'em, I say. I have little sympathy when I hear humanists bemoan our lack of students. Make your shit worth studying and they will come. Turn it into vacuous bullshit and they won't--and shouldn't. You should be happy that you're moving closer and closer to a point at which you're only wasting your own lives rather than pulling others down with you...
Cut out the bad pseudophilosophy and the moronic left-wing politics and the humanities will begin to flourish again, at least to some extent. Try it and see if they don't.


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