Thursday, October 8, 2009

Once More Unto the Breach

It's up! 140 ads.

[edited to remove link - I think we assumed you'd have to log in to access it]

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For Reference, last year the number was just shy of 270 (before cancellations)

-- SS

Update: When you look at the web-onlies, there are 256 ads total.

Later Update: last year there were 507 ads published on October 10th. Fuck.

Even More Later Update: Seriously, APA, what's with the same ad appearing with different ad numbers all over the place?

-- Mr. Zero

Latest Update: I realize the naïveté is at work when I found it strangely exciting to look at the JFP seriously for the first time.

I wait for the panic. The above comparisons are making it creep slowly. Full on anxiety attacks to happen soon. For now, I'll stick to taking deep breaths and marking down the numbers to the jobs that have earned the privilege of second looks and applications from yours truly...and everyone else. Fuck indeed.

Latest of the late updates: Anon. 4:00 p.m. has already called dibs on the Wisconsin job. Damn it. We should have gone to an auction for this year's job draft format, not a dibs system.

-- Jaded Dissertator

56 comments:

Anonymous said...

FYI - the JFP is only supposed to be available to paying APA members. As happy as I am that its up, you might not want to have a link to it on your site like this.

Anonymous said...

I doubt a link to the material is problematic, but I'm no lawyer. They should have it password protected. At least this fuckup benefits poor job seekers (or at least doesn't hurt them).

Mr. Zero said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mr. Zero said...

This thing sucks.

Anonymous said...

What do you think the 'only' in 'web-only' means? It doesn't mean, 'not in the regular JfP.

snowman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I call dibs on Wisconsin. I think that means there are 12 jobs left.

Anonymous said...

For those of us who resist the APA and its ridiculousness, is there a link we can go to in order to see the JFP? (Without logging in, of course.)

Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Yes, if some anonymous commenter could leave instructions on how to see the JFP for us non-APA members, that would tremendous!

Anonymous said...

yeah, there seem to be about four and a half jobs that I am actually qualified for.

and it does suck that they don't understand the word "only" means.

Jaded Dissertator said...

Spiros, over at Philosophers Anon has said that he'll e-mail it to anyone who e-mails him. Check the post here:

http://philosophersanon.blogspot.com/2009/10/apa-round-two.html

Anonymous said...

Huh. I can't load the APA site at all. Are other people able to log in?

Mr. Zero said...

yes.

Anonymous said...

Wow! There are a lot of jobs for which most people cannot get: Harvard, USC, Penn State, Michigan and on and on. Let's just say that if you couldn't get into the program for grad school, you probably aren't going to get to work there.

I feel really bad for all you people on the job market!!!

This thing is very unsetting.

Xenophon said...

Two observations. The research schools are still advertising (after all, they've got the money to muscle through the recession), but relatively few jobs from teaching schools. So the hotshots at Leiter top-10 should do fine (as always) and the pain will be felt by the hoi poloi.

Second, speaking of hoi poloi, it strikes me that there's an unusually large number of jobs in ethics/social/political (generally all three in the same AOS, which in itself is interesting) and ancient philosophy. That's not a scientific statistic, just a general impression. Other areas for which there are some jobs are modern and continental. So what sucks? Traditional M and E. That used to be the workhorse of philosophy. Now, not so much apparently.

For those of you still in coursework, it also looks like a lot of schools want people who can teach history of philosophy, but who have AOS in other areas. So it's good to make sure you've got a couple of ancient and a couple of modern courses, just so you can say, "yeah, sure, I can teach that."

No doubt these judgments are prejudiced by my own orientation to the field. Does anyone have a significantly different read on what's there and what's missing?

Anonymous said...

If you look on page 14, there is a list of schools advertising: 70 is the number!!!!! It's one freaking column!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

How many of those 507 jobs from last year were ultimately canceled?

Anonymous said...

Epic lulz.

A TT Person said...

For what it's worth...

1) Remember that you only need one offer. Yes, the odds are longer this year, and they were long to begin with. But you only need one.

2) Anyone smart enough and talented enough to get into a Ph.D. program is smart enough and talented enough to do lots of things well, and enjoy them. The more you believe that there is life outside of philosophy, the less stressed you will be about the job market, and the less likely it is that you will discover what life outside of philosophy is like. (And anyway, trust me, it's good. I've been there.)

Anonymous said...

I can't get the APA website to load either and I have no idea where people are seeing the JFP. I checked out Spiros' post, but I don't know where to get his email address.

Anonymous said...

TT Person,

How are you being helpful? To (1), yes the odds are longer - that is why the market is more depressing this year. Of course it only takes one job offer, but if my chances are now down to 0.5%, I'm not dancing on the hope wagon.

To (2), if you think it makes me feel better that I could piss away the last 6 yrs of my life and do something outside of philosophy, I'd like to smoke what you're smoking. There's a reason why I went into philosophy and spent all that time and effort.

So save the pep talk.

Anonymous said...

yeah, right now might not be time for the "we're all so talented, we can do anything we want (besides the thing we've trained 6-10 years to do)" talk. can't we save that until like january, at least? jeebus.

in other news: what does it mean that under "rankings" i (mis)read: "the following statement has been prepared by the committee on the status and failure of the profession"?

Anonymous said...

Dear Benedictine College or University or Whatever,

There is no such thing as "philosophy of nature." It has no place whatsoever in an undergraduate curriculum. Please give me a job.

Yours Sincerely,
Job Seeker, Ph.D.

Anonymous said...

The more you believe that there is life outside of philosophy .... the less likely it is that you will discover what life outside of philosophy is like.

huh? what does that even mean? The less you care about getting a job in philosophy, the more likely you are to land a job.

Anonymous said...

Well, I suppose if you want to think that there is nothing philosophical except working in academia, you can think that. And, in fact, that may be true for some specializations. I remain unconvinced that it is true for the discipline as a whole. I further think that this parochial view of philosophy needlessly restricts the "job market," resulting in a situation which is without question exploitative.

Having spent six years on a philosophy PhD, the discipline now asks us to spend 1-3 years more to VALIDATE those six years by landing a tenure-track job. If you don't, you are a "failure" and your PhD is "worthless." Not only that, but you are "unemployable,” except as an adjunct to work for peanuts. Which is to the benefit of the institution at the expense of the worker (we all know this).

In response to 11:13, 11:48, I think an important question needs to be answered (by all of us).

Was your goal to practice philosophy, or to be a professor, or both?

My contention is that, if it is only the first, you have been misled by the discipline. I think this is the result of the increasing isolation of the discipline over the last 50 years (or so). Prior to this, many philosophers (and MOST of the famous ones) straddled multiple areas (philosophy and psychology, physics, mathematics, economics, linguistics, etc.). These folks had *visibility* into areas of the outside world, and often tackled problems of concern to that world.

To clarify, I am not saying we need to be “interdisciplinary” and deal only with quasi (pseudo?)-philosophical questions. Instead, “the folk” in other disciplines (inside and outside of academia) are confronting philosophical problems without even the education to recognize their philosophical nature. They are confused and they answer these questions poorly. I have recognized this while working in “industry” to support my philosophy PhD. The job was a windfall, not something I looked for, but it has changed my perspective considerably.

Now, I am prepared to grant that if you’ve set your sights specifically on academia, this kind of work may be unsatisfying. It doesn’t provide the freedom that you want, teaching opportunities, conference travel, etc. If that’s your purpose, and I think it probably is for 11:13 and 11:48, I commend you and really do wish you all the luck in the world. You should not go into “industry.” We need dedicated researchers and educators.

However, the work “outside” need not be mind-numbing and uninteresting. There are plenty of poorly educated BA’s and BS’s to handle this grunt work (most of it). Instead, there is a need for people to solve difficult, interesting problems, not all of which involve supply chains. This requires something of a mercenary attitude which maybe only I have (and which probably means I’m not a “real” philosopher).

The increasingly parochial perspective of our discipline has left practically zero room for visibility into what is going on "outside" - and this facilitates and perpetuates the (in my opinion) false belief that the ONLY philosophical career is an academic one.

There is zero pressure to dislodge this belief because the result would put upward pressure on academic salaries and increased competition over PhD graduates, which would mean not as many of them would be interested in VAPs, fellowships, or adjunct teaching. We can’t have that, can we?

I’m fairly sure this will be an unpopular post, so I’ll finish it with a satisfying attack on a favorite target:

Shouldn’t the APA take a leading role in presenting philosophy as valuable both to university administrations (in terms of value as an undergraduate major/minor) and (if I’m not completely full of shit, which despite my earnest intentions, I may be) to the outside world? If so, they make zero effort in this regard, and their general mode of operations certainly doesn’t help matters.

If that isn’t the APA’s place, who is advocating on our behalf? Administrators?

Anonymous said...

FYI, 39 of the listing numbers from the web-only ads are repeats from JfP 183. (I'm counting listing numbers, not entries.) So, for the record, '259' should be at most '220'. (I say 'at most' because entry #s 17-24, 29-35, and the like make even '220' quite misleading.) Has anyone verified the '45' number from Spiros? I'm too busy crying.

Anonymous said...

For anyone who wants the obvious info not provided by Morehead State (243/244) without logging in, I found it here:

https://secureweb.moreheadstate.edu/NovusHRapps/JobPosting.aspx?JPID=1841

jhdeleuzian said...

Anon. @ 1:29

I liked your post. It reminded me of what mentors have told me before I started graduate school. But what kinds of non-acamedic careers for philosophers are you speaking of (or envisioning)?

Xenophon said...

I'd like to hear from someone who's seen a job they're actually going to apply for.

Anonymous said...

I found about 30 jobs that I'm not disqualified from. Perhaps 25 of those I have a legitimate AOS in the requested area or they are open. Out of those, at least 8 are out of my league. I don't expect to get called by Cornell, for instance. So there are about 17 or probably more like 15 jobs where my CV might not fly directly into the trash. At least 9 of those are in places where I couldn't possibly be happy. (poo me, yes, yes. I know. I'm such a brat. Don't really love philosophy and all that. . . .) I'm left with 6 jobs that I wouldn't be horribly depressed if I had to take. They will all probably get 1000+ applicants. . . . Not so good.

Anonymous said...

I've got a very good VAP in a good city. I get to teach a variety of courses, largely of my own choosing. I have lots of good students. And I could likely extend the VAP for several more years if I keep up the good work, etc. . . . (Others will likely find themselves in such a situation. I figure that there will be many more semi-permanent or long term VAPs in the coming years. . . .)

The thing is that there are several TT jobs in places where I'm not sure I could live. The trade off--job security for terrible city--doesn't seem worth it. In fact, a job for life in some of these places sounds like a life sentence in an ultra-minimal security prison.

I'm trying to figure out what risks one runs in staying in a VAP and not taking a TT job. (Put aside the fact that I likely won't face this choice this year.) If VAPing was like any other kind of job, one where you don't get laid off every year, then I don't think it would be so bad given the alternatives. . . .

Anonymous said...

jhdeleuzian,
This is anon 1:29. I'd be happy to provide my thoughts, but I'd prefer not to derail this discussion with long, rambling posts. If you put a post up on your blog, we could discuss it there (or by any other means/venue you suggest).

Anonymous said...

To perhaps send a cheery note of semi-optimism: I think this JFP met or slightly exceeded expectations. If we end up with an average November JFP (and we might), then this season will actually exceed expectations. If you keep in mind that about half the jobs from last year were either canceled or mysteriously "not filled", then we're about on par with the number of jobs from last year. And I think most reasonable people expected a mild-to-moderate decline.

Xenophon said...

Anon 2:51,

If you can hold onto your VAP for another couple of years, that might not be so bad an idea. Given the competition this year, it might be better to get another publication out and apply for jobs selectively. From experience I can say that a serious job search takes a lot of time.

However, I believe it's much easier to make it to finalist status if you've got a TT job than if you're a VAP, esp. several years post-PhD. So taking a TT job in, let's say, Wyoming, might not be a bad idea even if you think you could only do it for 2-3 years. After all, having been TT would at least give you an advantage in future VAP markets, so if you're willing to risk that fate long term, having had a TT job on your CV couldn't hurt. I'm sure the folks at CUNY would understand the argument that you just couldn't stand Wyoming.

Again, I'll say from experience that isolated hell holes aren't as bad as you think, provided you can tell yourself honestly that it'll only be for a couple of years. The tough part is when you've been there ten years and gradually given up all hope. But if you make a deal with yourself, three years and then it's VAP or barista if necessary, then you can stand anyplace that lets you do what you love.

To those of you who are tenured in Wyoming: 1) I've never been there but I'm told it's beautiful. The hell hole I have mind is nowhere near Wyoming. 2) I don't mean to advise anyone to insincerely take a TT job at your school. Fact is, they might love it there, and anyway, you probably are used to separating out the people who are serious about the long term from those who just need work.

Harvard of the Proletariat said...

I've been able to find a decent number of jobs to apply to I guess. The problem is the quality of the jobs. There are jobs that are likely out of my league and jobs that are not terribly attractive (because of teaching load, location etc). There aren't enough "middle of the road" jobs.

There has been some talk that the November JFP might be a little better than usual (because some schools might get positions funded later than normal). Is this a real possibility or is this just wishful thinking?

Potatoe said...

I agree with the above comment that there aren't enough "middle of the road" jobs. Hello, U of Michigan and Cornell, I know you will want to welcome me with open arms!
I see only a couple of jobs that look like a very good fit indeed, but I will be applying for at least 15.
I was kind of taken aback by the scarcity of jobs in M/E AOS. Also, hardly anybody is hiring in California, right? (And in the old days CA used to be like a maze of phil jobs.)

Anonymous said...

People,

Y'all seem to be neglecting something - half the ads have asterisks (* = possible position).

WTF?

Philosophy Prof said...

>>>>>
The more you believe that there is life outside of philosophy .... the less likely it is that you will discover what life outside of philosophy is like.

huh? what does that even mean? The less you care about getting a job in philosophy, the more likely you are to land a job.
>>>>>

The meaning is pretty clear I think. The whole claim was that the more we see ourselves as having options outside of philosophy, and as not restricted to philosophy prof. jobs, the less stressed we will be, and the more happy and productive we will be, and so the higher the chance that we will get jobs in philosophy (and so not get a real sense of what it's like outside of philosophy).

Anonymous said...

well... there's always Ghana.
But seriously, they should just call this the Social/Political/Value Theory JFP. Fucked fucked fucked.

Harvard of the Proletariat said...

"I was kind of taken aback by the scarcity of jobs in M/E AOS. Also, hardly anybody is hiring in California, right?"

Yeah. You could expand this to nearly all of the "core analytic" areas. There are hardly any jobs in philosophy of mind, just like last year. Philosophy of language jobs seemed scarce. I didn't see many (if any) jobs for just logic; this is sad, but nothing new. One exception would be philosophy of science; it seemed like there were a lot of jobs there.

And California might kill the market. It's not just the lack of jobs from CA. What if a lot of disgruntled people try to flee tenure track jobs in CA, and thereby snatch up a lot of jobs in other states? Maybe this worry is unfounded (things in CA aren't that bad, are they)?

Anonymous said...

What's the AOS for Michigan? Or is it open?

Potato said...

Harvard of the Proletariat (a fetching name, btw, I wish I could sign my cover letter like that; take that Michigan!), you are probably onto something with respect to CA jobs. I personally know a few philosophers who suddenly and shockingly no longer have jobs (not TT positions though) in CA due to budget cuts. So, we will probably be seeing lots of CA "immigrants."

Anonymous said...

Yes, things are that bad in California.

Anonymous said...

I think the worries about California are legitimate. Personally, I have one friend who's a junior faculty person in the Cal State system, and he's on the market because he worries that the funding for his job is going to disappear. To make matters worse, I don't know any other junior faculty in the Cal State system. Therefore, 100% of junior faculty in the Cal State system are on the market! This is terrible news. I need to make more friends in L.A.

Anonymous said...

Never mind the AOS for Michigan: I call dibs.

Will Philosophize For Food said...

"I'm trying to figure out what risks one runs in staying in a VAP and not taking a TT job. (Put aside the fact that I likely won't face this choice this year.) If VAPing was like any other kind of job, one where you don't get laid off every year, then I don't think it would be so bad given the alternatives. . . ."

I've been wondering about this also. Can we make this a front-page question?

"What's the AOS for Michigan? Or is it open?"

Michigan runs this ad every year. It's always AOS: Open, AOC: Open, Rank: Open. I'm not sure if they hire on it every year--but a friend of mine liked to call it "tolling for the next Wittgenstein."

Anonymous said...

Michigan is trying to exact the next Wittgenstein as a fee from job applicants? That's just not right.

Anonymous said...

"Michigan is trying to exact the next Wittgenstein as a fee from job applicants? That's just not right."

Congratulations to you if you think you're good enough to get a job at Michigan.

For those of us who aren't, we are more realistic than to apply to a top-5 program on an open ad and realistically expect anything.

Anonymous 8:54 said...

"Congratulations to you if you think you're good enough to get a job at Michigan."

That isn't what I said; rather, I was having a little fun with the typo in the previous post: Michigan is "trolling" not "tolling" for the next Wittgenstein.

Anonymous said...

Okay, but I get Boise State.

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:50 dicit: 'There is no such thing as "philosophy of nature." '

You are obviously not a Thomist, and therefore not a real philosopher. You need not then apply.

Anonymous said...

Re: Michigan
What's interesting (and indicative of the dire market) is that another perennial "troller"-Princeton-did not advertise this year.

Anonymous said...

Anon October 9, 2009 12:50 PM
"There is no such thing as philosophy of nature" and "it has no place in an undergraduate curriculum."

You're an idiot, and obviously you haven't had an interview with a Catholic university.

fisherman's son said...

"troll" = "trawl"?
Or am I missing some wordplay too?

zombie said...

I've got 21 jobs that I'm applying for. They are in my area (more or less) (Yay for being an ethicist!) and in places that are not completely unacceptable to me. But that's less than half of the jobs I applied for last year.
Nothing much from the public universities, and not a one in my home state of NY. That's not good.

BunnyHugger said...

Fisherman's son, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Troll_(angling) .