Revolution Rock

We have not sung in some time, but now we are singing Revolution Rock.

After twelve years of oppression I told the M.A.’s I had had it, I would no longer test from a commercial testing bank, I would make my own examinations and peg them to national standards.

I said I was sure I was competent to do this, having done it for eighteen years before coming here.

I said I knew every expert and accreditation agency would support me, and that I was tired of pretending I did not have expertise just to be “fair.”

I said I would not surrender, and that I awaited them in my office if they wanted to take me out.

I gave my memo the avant-garde title “Manifesto With No Reverse Gear.”

I await them now.


2 thoughts on “Revolution Rock

  1. And: the very worst advice I ever got on how to be a professor was to just walk through some classes, following the leader and not worrying about it. If to do so means to mutilate yourself, this is really poor advice. Also, many smaller schools do not have course leaders and you should never, ever just walk through a class which has no leader — someone has to be a competent leader and it has to be you if there is no other, regardless of how things “should” be or how people want them to be or how your dissertation director believes them to be because s/he has never seen any but the most rational and fancy of schools.

    I am SO educated to all of this, in addition to the local dysfunction, that wresting control of my undergraduate courses out of the hands of the MA’s feels dangerous and scary (although good).

  2. P.S. very close to the actual memo:


    “No me rendiré y aquí los espero. Yo quiero patria libre o morir.”
    –A.C. Sandino, letter refusing to surrender to U.S. Marines, ca. 1927.

    My language class changed radically when I went off the test bank. It is now the most successful language class I have taught since going on the test bank. I will not go back. My rebellion against the test bank is total, permanent, and complete!

    –Yo, Profesora Cero, acampada y semi-clandestina en mis aposentos.

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