Thursday, January 9, 2014

Contingency at #MLA14

Chicago MLA 2014…Schedule

…of #adjunct issue sessions. Numbers are bold red and in #hashtag format to facilitate following by Twitter. Just search #mla14 + session hashtag to see tweets from/about a particular session.  Anyone can follow, no account/login required. Check the Program on MLA Convention page and lists by topic for more sessions; more links at the bottom of the page. I'll be following on Twitter from @precariousfac and @vcvaile, RT'g and posting on Facebook at A new faculty majority ~ and if you feel bad about being limited to virtual attendance and missing the meat world version, just check the Chicago weather or Google up images for Chicago + "Polar Vortex"

#s196 - Write on Your Own Time: Scholarship and Non-Tenure-Track Faculty Members

Friday, 10 January, 8:30–9:45 a.m., Kane, Chicago Marriott. Program arranged by the MLA Committee on Contingent Labor in the Profession. Presiding: Nicole B. Wallack, Columbia Univ.

Sarah Boslaugh, Kennesaw State Univ.; Katherine Boulay, Univ. of Illinois, Chicago; Peter Khost, Stony Brook Univ., State Univ. of New York; Zachary Lamm, Univ. of Illinois, Chicago; Sophie Queuniet, Columbia Univ.; Deborah Skolnik Rosenberg, Northwestern Univ.; Andrea Witzke Leavey, Univ. of Illinois, Chicago
Session Description:
How do expectations for scholarship enter into the lives of non-tenure-track faculty members' teaching, sense of professional identity, and status among our peers? This roundtable will explore the conditions that inform the content, form, frequency, and reception of our scholarship. We will reflect on how non-tenure-track faculty members can create space—literal and figurative—for scholarly work.
#s482 Making Digital Counterpublics

Saturday, 11 January, 10:15–11:30 a.m., Arkansas, Sheraton Chicago. A special session, presiding: David Parry, Saint Joseph's Univ.

David Parry's Annotation: Information on the session, along with abstracts, papers from the session, slides, resources, links to the projects, and videos can be found at:
  1. "Education Reform by Undergraduates: Giving Rural Students a Voice," Lee Skallerup Bessette, Morehead State Univ.
  2. "From MOOC to POOC: Plurality, Participation, and JustPublics," Matthew K. Gold, New York City Coll. of Tech., City Univ. of New York; Emily Sherwood, Graduate Center, City Univ. of New York
  3. "A Beautiful Social Collaborative," Aimee Knight, Saint Joseph's Univ
  4. "Fashioning Alternative Publics," Kim Knight, Univ. of Texas, Dallas
For papers, abstracts, and resources, visit

#s544 Agenda for the 2014 Delegate Assembly Meeting
At the upcoming Delegate Assembly meeting, which will take place at the 2014 MLA Annual Convention in Chicago and begin at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, 11 January (session 544), delegates will consider staff and committee reports on association activities, a special report on the reorganization of MLA divisions and discussion groups, and two regular resolutions. Also on the assembly’s agenda is a one-hour open discussion of strategies for strengthening humanities education as a public good.
Members may submit emergency resolutions to the chair of the Delegate Assembly Organizing Committee up to twenty-four hours before the start of the assembly meeting. The last opportunity for submitting an emergency resolution comes at the Open Hearing on Resolutions at the convention (#s296). Please see the second section in Checklists for Submitting Resolutions for information on submission requirements.

#s360 Contingency at the Core

Friday, 10 January, 3:30–4:45 p.m., Chicago X, Sheraton Chicago. Program arranged by the Division on Teaching as a Profession. Presiding: Robert Samuels, Univ. of California, Los Angeles
  1. "On Academic Freedom, Contingency, and the Tragedy of the Commons," Aaron Louis Plasek, New York Univ.
  2. "Academic Labor and the Resistance to Curricular Change," Robert Samuels
  3. "Curricular Evaluation and Change in the Age of Contingency," Heather L. Colburn, Northwestern Univ.; Elena Lanza, Northwestern Univ.
#s418 Vulnerability and Survivalism of the Humanities in Corporatized Academia

Friday, 10 January, 5:15–6:30 p.m., Erie, Sheraton Chicago. Program arranged by the Community College Humanities Association. Presiding: Steven Hymowech, Fulton-Montgomery Community Coll., NY
  1. "Right Leaders of Wrong: A Revolution in Higher Education," Jesse Stommel, Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison
  2. "Banding Together in the Face of the Coming 'Apocalypse,'" Lee Skallerup Bessette, Morehead State Univ.
  3. "Who Owns the Humanities?" George Louis Scheper, Community Coll. of Baltimore County, MD
  4. "Vulnerability and Academia: A Critical Analysis," Paul Lauter, Trinity Coll., CT
Responding: Stacey Lee Donohue, Central Oregon Community Coll. For abstracts, visit

#s438 Non-Tenure-Track Faculty Members in the Modern Languages: Issues and Directions

Saturday, 5 January, 8:30–9:45 a.m., Liberty A, Sheraton. program arranged by the MLA Committee on Contingent Labor in the Profession.

Presiding: Glenn Levine, Univ. of California, Irvine. Glenn Levine's Annotation:
This session is useful for department chairs, administrators and other colleagues interested in understanding the complex issues related to non-tenure-track faculty and/or making programmatic reforms.
Speakers: Dorothea Heitsch, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; Karen Lentz Madison, Univ. of Arkansas, Fayetteville; Maria Shine Stewart, John Carroll Univ.

Session Description:
Members of the MLA Committee on Contingent Labor in the Profession will present a special joint issue of the ADE and ADFL bulletins titled Non-Tenure-Track Faculty Members in the Modern Languages: Issues and Directions. Discussion will focus on the trends in contingent labor identified in the special issue and ways in which departments and faculty members can respond to these trends.
#s533 Career Opportunities in English and Foreign Languages at Two-Year Colleges

Saturday, 11 January, 12:00 noon–1:15 p.m., Addison, Chicago Marriott. Program arranged by the ADE Executive Committee and the ADFL Executive Committee. Presiding: Susan Miller, Santa Fe Community Coll., FL

Speakers: Sandra Sellers Hanson, LaGuardia Community Coll., City Univ. of New York; June Miyasaki, Los Angeles Valley Coll., CA; Howard B. Tinberg, Bristol Community Coll., MA

Session Description:
Faculty members in English and foreign languages will discuss the career opportunities that exist at two-year colleges, with a special focus on job seekers who are starting their careers.

#s571 Off the Tenure Track, on Our Radar

Saturday, 11 January, 1:45–3:00 p.m., Belmont, Chicago Marriott. Program arranged by the MLA Committee on Contingent Labor in the Profession.  

Presiding: Karen Lentz Madison, Univ. of Arkansas, Fayetteville
  1. "Contingent Faculty Members at the Center for the Study of Languages, Rice University: Evolutions in Policies and Practices," Wendy L. Ring Freeman, Rice Univ.
  2. "Bylaws and Collegiality at Pitt: Forty Years of Inclusive and Adaptive Faculty Self-Governance," Philip Edward Smith, Univ. of Pittsburgh
#s643 Defining the Moment, Defining the Momentum: Perspectives on the Language of Employment Status

Saturday, 11 January, 5:15–6:30 p.m., Indiana-Iowa, Chicago Marriott. Program arranged by the Discussion Group on Part-Time Faculty Members. Presiding: Margaret Hanzimanolis, De Anza Coll., CA.  Margaret Hanzimanolis's Annotation: Talks on parity, organizing, language used in the debates about contingency.

Speakers: Sue Rowe Doe, Colorado State Univ., Fort Collins; Alice Emery, Southern Connecticut State Univ.; Margaret Hanzimanolis; Maria Maisto, New Faculty Majority; Marcia Newfield, Borough of Manhattan Community Coll., City Univ. of New York; Emma Widener, Southern Connecticut State Univ.

Responding: Marc Bousquet, Emory Univ.

For PowerPoint presentations and slide shows, write to

Session Description:
Short, focused presentations that examine critical definitions determining the working conditions and institutional integration of part-time faculty members; dialogue about effective resistance to the frameworks of inequality that persist.

#s703 Strength in Numbers: Unionization as a Strategy for Reducing Faculty Vulnerability

Sunday, 12 January, 8:30–9:45 a.m., Sheffield, Chicago Marriott. Program arranged by the American Association of University Professors. Presiding: Gwendolyn Bradley, American Assn. of University Professors

Speakers: Granville Ganter, Saint John's Univ., NY; M. Scott McFarland, Univ. of Illinois, Chicago; Walter Benn Michaels, Univ. of Illinois, Chicago; Kira Schuman, American Assn. of University Professors; Robin J. Sowards, Duquesne Univ.

Session Description:
As public funding dwindles, education is redefined as job training, and academic institutions are run more and more like Walmart, humanities faculty members are increasingly vulnerable. Hear from faculty members who have formed unions—graduate-employee, contingent-faculty, and tenure-line—to fight for reasonable working conditions, the faculty voice in academic decision making, and academic standards.
 #s783 How We Talk about Contingent Faculty Members

Sunday, 12 January, 1:45–3:00 p.m., Lincolnshire, Chicago Marriott. A special session
Presiding: Catherine Keohane, Montclair State Univ.; Julia Wagner, Montclair State Univ.
  1. "From Adjunct to Contingent to Teaching Faculty Member: Changing Labels but Continued Divisions?" Catherine Keohane
  2. "The Good, the Bad, and the Unethical: Stories from Two Decades as a Contingent Faculty Member," Sharon M. Gallagher, Penn State Univ., Erie-Behrend
  3. "How We Change: Contingent Faculty Members and the Responsibility of Communicating for Action," Julia Wagner

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