The first blog post: 23 Things

This is the post excerpt.


My first blog posting, winter 2017, july.


A short speech in Rome

congratulations to David

Minding the Workplace

Judge Pauline Spencer of the International Society for Therapeutic Jurisprudence board of trustees introduced me and presented the award

Hello dear readers, during the next week I’ll be at the International Congress on Law and Mental Health in Rome., sponsored by the International Academy of Law and Mental Health. At the conference’s opening ceremonies on Sunday, I received the Bruce Winick Award for contributions to the field of therapeutic jurisprudence (TJ). I was invited to make a short acceptance speech, and I share it with you below.

A bit of background: In 1987, Bruce joined fellow law professor David Wexler to establish the interdisciplinary field of therapeutic jurisprudence, which examines the therapeutic and anti-therapeutic properties of laws, legal systems, and legal institutions. Sadly, Bruce passed away in 2010. But his memory and important writings, plus the ongoing, energetic presence of David Wexler, continue to inspire us. I’ve written about…

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Research funding for casuals


The Research Whisperer

The National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) invited Tseen and I to speak to precariously employed (casual) academic members. This post is based on the talk that I am giving today. Thanks to the NTEU Victorian Division for hosting this event.

I can’t save you

It Gets Worse!

There are serious structural problems in universities worldwide. The number of permanently employed staff is shrinking. The number of precariously employed staff (casual, adjunct, paid by the hour) is increasing. I can’t change that. This situation isn’t getting any better. It gets worse.

  • Unionism (like the National Tertiary Education Union in Australia) provides an organised industry-wide approach to the problem. The union is your best bet for speaking truth to power, whether that be in representing you personally when you have an individual grievance, representing all members in discussions with the university, or talking directly to the government about sector-wide issues.
  • I can’t do that…

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The Consequences of Being a ‘Good’ Early-Career Academic


the social thinker

Career planning in academia is a component of a broader suite of cultural norms and material practices that reproduce the contemporary status quo. Career planning assumes the existence of a means of creating some predictability and contingency planning – an anchor on which to weigh your ship in the ocean of possible futures. Career planning means taking the advice of the good seafarers who came before your; to trust that their vectors are well-plotted and that their compasses point true. The oceans of academia are economic, cultural, and social, so that to take the advice of seafarers on where to anchor your vessel is to aspire to a way of life. In this post, I reflect on how this way of life is experienced by early-career academics who keep the maps of their forebears sacred, despite many lingering feelings that their anchors never truly caught on the seafloor.

In Australia…

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Writing conference presentations: think about the audience

DoctoralWriting SIG

By Cally Guerin

I’ve been fortunate to attend several Higher Education conferences lately and have been thinking about the research writing in the papers I’ve listened to. There have been a broad range of presentation styles, giving me contact with norms outside my usual disciplinary connections. Most of the presentations have been fabulously stimulating, and it has been wonderful to spend time with people who are passionate about their research, socially engaged and working to make the world a better place. I have also been reminded of just how important it is to think about communicating with the live audience in the room.

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What Does it Mean to Be an Activist Historian?: A Roundtable with the Editors

shimmers me timbres

The Activist History Review

Editors’ Round Table on Activist History

In this roundtable-style conversation, the longstanding editors at The Activist History Review and its newest members discuss “activist history,” what it means to be an activist historian.

MB (Michael T. Barry Jr.): What is activist history and why do we do it?

CJY (Cory James Young): When Will asked me to write the conclusion to our edited volume, Demand the Impossible, two years ago, I had to think deeply about this question. I ended up proposing a typology that identified four kinds of activist history: histories of activists, histories for activists, histories inspired by activists, and histories that are activist. Of course these categories blur, but they are a reminder that “activist history” is itself a broad category (we want to make space for a diversity of approaches, after all!).

Perhaps my favorite kind of activist history—one I’m not sure fits neatly into…

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A morning field trip to the Boston Globe

paper days

Minding the Workplace

I am a big fan of newspapers. They are necessary for healthy civic life. They are also laboring under challenging circumstances in a digital era where print edition advertising dollars have diminished and lots of online readers expect news reporting to be accessible free of charge.

Among the papers I’m rooting for is the Boston Globe. I have no personal stake in it, other than being a resident of Boston and a subscriber. But I grasp its central role in shaping and informing our understanding of current events, such as over the weekend when — as I wrote earlier this week — they published two excellent features highlighting the destructive impact of workplace bullying.

A visit to the Globe

That’s among the reasons why I was delighted to participate in an onsite visit to the Globe’s downtown Boston headquarters this morning, courtesy of its Facebook group for subscribers…

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