Saturday, July 9, 2016

Write What You Know!

The Daily Caller is not a regular read because they're often too shrill and too much like a right-side version of Buzzfeed, but every now and again there's something that will catch your eye.

Like this lamentation over the passing of the Twitter account of Real_PeerReview, a clandestine academic who posted titles and abstracts of actual academic papers for which beautiful, stately trees gave their lives. Of course, mocking academia is the lowest of low-hanging fruit -- you'd have to harvest while spelunking to get any lower -- but that doesn't make it any less fun. Who wouldn't want to read a spirited defense of fungi and their overlooked role in ecopoetry -- complete with four poems on mushrooms!

Think of the reception you will get when you open your next cocktail party conversation with one of the lessons you gleaned from "Entangling a Post-Reflexivity Through Post-Intentional Phenomenology." Don't believe me? According to the abstract, the paper's authors "amplify the post in post-intentional phenomenology to demonstrate some of the unique possibilities this methodology might afford qualitative researchers interested in experimenting with entangled connections among seemingly disparate philosophies, theories, and methodologies." If folks don't get the vapors when you dazzle them by doing that, then they have souls of stone.

The DC article notes that the tweeter has shut down his or her account, and writer Blake Neff suggests it is because the tweets might have been imperiling Real_PeerReview's own academic career. Which is one of the not-so-funny aspects of this ridiculous situation. One of those is that people pay good money to the institutions that produce this bushwa, often under the misconception that those institutions have the goal of educating their children rather than perpetuating their own existence. But the one that crops up from the deletion is that there are genuinely smart people who want to teach at college, and maybe they exercise their brains on some interesting and off-the-wall topics. Only when they draw attention to the real "This'll keep my job because everyone who looks at it will keep quiet about how they have no idea what I'm talking about instead of taking the risk others might think they're stupid" crap, they get pushback.

So Real_PeerReview might not get work, while the champion of the underdog 'shroom rhymes has a regular gig. Man, am I glad I'm not in school today.

The entire list of tweets is here.

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