The halls of academe are known to be hospitable to people with radical views on power relationships between capital and labor, but colleges themselves are often merciless actors in the labor market. Many adjuncts earn only a few thousand dollars per course, with no health insurance or retirement benefits. Twenty-five percent of part-time faculty receive some form of public assistance.
But there’s a crucial difference between schoolteachers and college professors. Elementary, middle, and high school teachers all have versions of the same job. They sink and swim and bargain together. The academy is a two-tier caste system, split between those who won the tenure tournament and those who lost.
From the comments:
I had a philosophy professor in college who said “if you’re thinking about a PhD in Philosophy, let me talk you out of it.” Great advice.
The Bleak Job Landscape of Adjunctopia for Ph.D.s
Ruthless labor exploitation? Generational betrayal? Understanding the job crisis in academia requires a look at recent history.
Kevin Carey, NYTIMES