Vitriol, Part x(n)

The other reason I resent all the advisors who preach about how you should do a poor job teaching is that well known professors gave very responsible courses, that I took as an undergraduate, at one of the premier research institutions in the world. They had good materials, they prepared interesting essay questions, they did a great many things and they were eminent scholars. You may never have met academics as famous as those I have.

In graduate school, however, at the same institution out West, our program seemed to be overrun by Yankees. These were a large cohort of assistant professors and graduate students who spent their time being rude to each other and everyone else. The graduate students, who came from Ivy League schools, had learning disabilities, specific learning styles, and other neuroses which made their lives difficult; they were shocked to find that at a public school it was not as easy as it had been for them in the past to go and chat with a professor instead of finishing their paper, and so on.

The assistant professors, meanwhile, spent a great deal of their time exhorting these graduate students to work harder, and telling us Westerners that we looked too blissful to be hard workers. “How could you have written a paper that good, being blonde?” a feminist scholar from Ann Arbor once asked me. Una profesora de Ann Arbor, y feminista, y de izquierda, por más señas. Perhaps, then, these are the people who need advice about motivation, and not being so lazy, and not being so entitled.

What I have to say about those people is this: I shit in the milk of the Yankee whores that bore them for the Calvinist devils they fucked. And yes, I can swear creatively. I wish I could do it in Faroese. I guess you could say I am angry; I would say it is for good reason.

And I am partial, and I have been prejudiced since that experience, and I realize my stereotype does not fit everyone, but for the purposes of this post I do not care. I have traveled far and wide, and the least civilized people I have ever met are academics from the Northeastern United States, and I am so glad I have never had to live in the East.



Filed under Banes, What Is A Scholar?

18 responses to “Vitriol, Part x(n)

  1. Brava, brava, brava for this post!!!

    “I shit in the milk of the Yankee whores that bore them for the Calvinist devils they fucked.”

    -I’m giving you a standing ovation for this sentence right now. This is what I always wanted to say but couldn’t find the words.

  2. Z

    Merci, c’est bon, I almost deleted it as inflammatory.

  3. I was told at Stanford I was too laid back too, being from California. Pues yo también me cago en la leche de la puta madre yanqui que los parió.

  4. Z

    Californians are simply superior.

    Do you know CUP is re releasing the Dialectics of Poetry and Silence, Jean Franco’s much maligned book (which I don’t find that bad)?

    I like Jean a lot better than you do — and don’t complain about her Spanish, lots of famous scholars don’t speak well, I’ve seen whole rafts of them speak when the only one who did it with ease was Neil Larsen. I think MLP is overrated and strangely self important. But I’ll take either of them to coffee any day, any day before I do their friend, that feminist from Ann Arbor.

  5. Z

    But PS: Stanford undergraduates transferring to UCB to save money, really suffered because of how much harder it was. I think they might not have gotten into UCB except as transfer students. As freshmen they may have had to go to Stanford, getting not on grades and scores but on extracurricular activities and things like that. I guess that was what these Ivy graduates were going through.

    And yet people from Reed (again, in the West) were way ahead.

  6. Almudena

    I am interested in the subject but find difficult to follow your discourse. I am learning English now. Maybe I will understand better by the end of the semester.

  7. I’m now discovering that Jonathan is actually Argentinean. 🙂

  8. Pingback: Let’s Swear Together! « Clarissa's Blog

  9. Jonathan

    Che, ya sabés mi secreto.

  10. Jonathan

    We disliked MLP with a passion. She is truly evil.

    It’s true the Stanford undergrads were not impressive intellectually. I found the ones at Cornell much smarter.

  11. Perdon, pero ningun argentino que se precie diria: “Me cago en la leche…”

    @Z: did you mean people from Reed? I interviewed with them, and was asked how I would use Foucault in an Intermediate Spanish II class. I am not kidding.

  12. Z

    @SpanProf: No, it’s something Spaniards say, and the one with the Argentine relatives on this thread besides you is actually this servidora. Prima en 6o grado de Borges y en 7o de Benito Lynch; my ancestor emigrated from Rusia in the 19th C and married the nieta of the Coronel Cornelio Saavedra, 1a junta 1810. He was of course the one who mando matar a Moreno and the family appears to have become bankers, responsible for bad financial situation in 19C, and to be “unos fascistas de mierda.”

    Yes, that’s how the people at Reed are. It means their graduates are mega nerds and ahead of everyone else in graduate school.

    @Jonathan well MLP’s possibly best friend directed my dissertation y es una persona realmente cruel — although not about said dissertation, oddly.
    You’ve got a colleague in field for nosotras; she says one has to forgive bad behavior because the pressure of working at a Big U takes its toll; I say the hell with making that kind of excuse: going off once or twice, or even being hot tempered generally, is all right, but systematic abuse is another thing entirely.

  13. “Perdon, pero ningun argentino que se precie diria: “Me cago en la leche…””

    -La concha de la lora, pero sera posible. . .

    Is this any better? It’s my favorite Argentinean expression, too. 🙂

  14. ” I say the hell with making that kind of excuse: going off once or twice, or even being hot tempered generally, is all right, but systematic abuse is another thing entirely.”

    -Yes! So true! We are all under pressure but this is no excuse to vent on people with less power. Want to vent? Go to the Dean’s office and let it fly, if you dare. But systematical abuse of students is just wrong.

    I’m a very hot-tempered person (in case anybody hasn’t noticed), but I don’t go off on people who are dependent on me. Complete strangers yes, any time. 🙂

  15. Pingback: Why I Am Allergic To Certain Calls for Solidarity with Academic Women | Mictlantecuhtli

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s