Thursday, November 18, 2004
Washing clothes for a trip to Philly tomorrow (no laptop, no road-blogging).
Trekking to Brotherly Love for a grand-stately release reception for Espejos
y Ventanas. I'd say more about the book beyond interesante but
for a heap of reading to get done before tomorrow.
All kinds of buzz on the net today about the beta release of Google
Scholar. I book-marked it; will put it to use. But after a few cursory
searches (artificial searches...looking for exactly nothing), ambivalence
settled on me--that and I should be reading my poor head off. Kept turning
up PDFs (Paper-Digm Fe'you). Jeeps, I sound rotten and ungrateful!
Emph. on post-colonialism in my Mon-Tue courses this week. Reading Lu
on Anzaldua & Lundsford, Anzaldua on the new mestiza, Deepika Bahri on
Spivak & Bhaba, Hardt & Negri on Bhaba and nation-states, Bhaba on
Fanon, and Haraway's cyborg manifesto. And some chapters from
Canagarajah's Geopolitics of Academic Writing.
E.'s group routed
Si Tanka (S.D.), 6-1, in the first round of the NAIA Men's Soccer National
Championship Tournament yesterday in Olathe, Kan. Today they play
Auburn-Montgomery (Ala.) at 5:00 p.m. CST. Live
Posted by Derek Mueller at November 18, 2004 5:38 PM
Reading Canagarajah just fer fun, or is someone assigning it?
It's for 732--Steve's course.
Congrats to E. Keep up the good work! Wish I could have seen the game.
Looks like they got busted up 5-2 this evening, so the season's over. Unfortunate, but fair considering they eliminated UAM in the same round last season.
Glad to see someone in the CCR program is assigning _Geopolitics_. It's a fascinating book. What was the discussion of it like?
We read the first two chapters of it for class yesterday along with Min-Zhan Lu's "Composing Postcolonial Studies" essay, and we're picking up a few more chapters of it next Tuesday afternoon. I think it's fascinating, too. Extending the economic considerations of global capitalism to other channels, like Canagarajah does, questions the complicit part of refereed a-list journals (er, the whole culture of the research-driven academy?)--like a pebble cast at the Anglophone monolith of a rarely-challenged knowledge empire. Responses yesterday were mixed. Some said Canagarajah ought to have done more with the material and economic dimensions (the problem that in our own aspirations for academic work, we're complicit); another critique questioned the inside-outside or center-periphery tidiness of the model. We also fumbled around with "what does this mean for us? -and- what duty should we feel to complicate the traditional means of gaining capital in a tenure-driven academic field?" We're still early the reading, and, as you know, it's that seminar-project time of year. I'd definitely like to know what you think of it, if you have time.
This is a little off the topic (partly because I read Canagarajah a couple of years ago), but one interesting (but frustrating!) aspect of the Americanization(?) of academic work as it pertains to the academic life in Taiwan is the drive by the Ministry of Education to get more Taiwan scholars published in SSCI journals. I've been working recently with an associate professor in education from a national normal university here who needs to have more international (U.S.) conference presentations and publications in U.S. academic journals in order to get promoted to full professor.
The MOE has also begun to evaluate universities partially based on the numbers of SSCI articles that university faculty are publishing. Since the MOE holds the purse-strings for a portion of university budgets (even for private universities), there is a direct relation among academic research practices in Taiwan (arguably in the periphery), the ranking of academic journals in the center (the U.S., basically), and the economics of higher education in Taiwan.
And this is all in the context of a country where parents are increasingly pushing their children to learn English from an early age and where last Thursday you could see Taiwanese people celebrating (?) Thanksgiving (almost a month after we celebrated Halloween, thank you).
It's hard to say whether an opened up realm of academic publishing would really change the thinking of people such as the MOE or academic deans. Hard to say, too, whether the other forms of capitalistic push care what happens in academic publishing. In other words, the global Americanizations--Halloween, T'giving--likely won't be affected by altered publication processes, right? Your comment makes me think that prefering alternative publication venues is underscored by a certain condition of privilege, particularly when what counts as intellectual work is decided by an individual rather than a group of peers.