• The Worst of Anthro Job Ads for 2021

    Dannah Dennis, Dada Docot, Danielle Gendron, Ilana Gershon (see profile)
    Anthropology, Labor Studies
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    Every fall, some lucky anthropology departments get to hire. The search for a new colleague happens behind the scenes for a while before it goes public—five-year plans have been written, external reviews have been navigated, lots of conversations have occurred, and some pleading with a dean has taken place. But the first public hint that the department has been successful in its campaign is the job ad. And what a text it is! Written by a committee, endorsed by a department, approved by HR (in some institutions), and then read earnestly and over and over again by job applicants wondering if they should apply. And these job applicants often find themselves wondering: Who wrote this ad? Why do they need so much material from their applicants? Who is actually going to read three writing samples for two hundred applicants? Job applicants might have other questions; they might want to know a salary range, if moving costs will be reimbursed, and if they will in fact be told in a timely fashion whether they made a cut or were rejected. But job seekers are supplicants, and they might feel too vulnerable to ask. There is no way for applicants to point out that the job ads are taking too much time out of the scholarly community’s collective time bank. And so into the breach we go—awarding the title of “Worst Job Ad of 2021” to remind departments that job ads can be written with more consideration and care for applicants and that their carelessness has costs that applicants and letter writers are paying (and resenting every moment of).
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    Journal article    
    Last Updated:
    6 months ago


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