Best Academic Blog Goin'

When I first stumbled upon Oso Raro's Slaves of Academe (I think it was this past March of '06, and shortly thereafter I was dazzled by Raro's Fine Young cannibals harangue), I knew by the third or fourth paragraph that this was, without question, the best academic blog going. Campy, astute, acerbic, brilliant, and "oso" well written, I get positively giddy each time there's a new post.

Yesterday, Oso Raro posted a subtle and touching appreciation of Invisible Adjunct. Of course, Raro is in a very different position than IA was, but it's no surprise to see this post.

Oso Raro, by eulogizing IA and her now defunct blog, converses with Clancy's previous reading of IA to insist that IA demonstrated what a true cultural hub in the blogosphere looks like while questioning the labor practices our systems depend on.

Oso Raro writes:
The element of chance seems to be the most important factor in landing one of these coveted [tenure-track] placements, although we continue to believe, as a profession and a society, in the meritocratic principle that, in this instance, masks an abusive and exploitative labour system.
This reminds me of something my friend Erik once said about the perils of the academic job market:
We learn, through the process of going through graduate school, that academia is an appropriate shrine on which to sacrifice ourselves.
IA, of course, got out after a lot of sacrifice. But what I like about academic bloggers who are struggling in or on the margins of the biz, is that they make public the challenges that can so often remain masked.

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