Surviving Academe: Equity and Persistence for Students and Faculty

deadline for submissions: 
April 15, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Academic Labor: Research and Artistry (ALRA) Journal
contact email: 

We hope you enjoyed Volume 1, Issue 1 of Academic Labor: Research and Artistry (ALRA), a peer-reviewed open access academic journal launched in 2016 by the Center for the Study of Academic Labor (CSAL) at Colorado State University. The journal encourages ongoing research on matters relating to tenure and contingency in the academy, both nationally and internationally. Along with our center and web site, we offer a research home for those undertaking scholarship in areas broadly defined as tenure studies and contingency studies. To meet this objective, we invite a wide range of contributions, from the statistical to the historic/archival, from the theoretical to the applied, from the researched to the creative, and from empirical to essayist forms. Our editors and reviewers include social scientists, artists, and theorists specializing in labor issues.


Our second issue will focus on discussions of “the slow professor” and “surviving academe”—and efforts by academics to (re)gain control of their professional and personal lives. We see this issue offering solidarity with other workers who are seeking a workplace that demands less than the proverbial pound of flesh—i.e., a workplace that respects one’s boundaries and one’s dignity. This issue will focus on how faculty, staff, and students persist under current academic conditions. Send us your manuscripts! We hope this issue will generate responses and will fuel a conversation that will take us forward. Here are some initial questions that may generate ideas for contributors:


  • How can conceptions of the “slow professor” become more equitable? What does “slowness,” as a concept or practice, offer movements and efforts that aim to realize campus equity?
  • How might collegiality across rank and status be encouraged to contribute to reduced emotional labor, perhaps particularly in regard to advocacy and activism, and address the fatigue that results?
  • What informal and formalized resources can help faculty, staff, and students to persist under current academic conditions? For example, what enables the recruitment and retention of diverse faculty?
  • What does campus equity mean and how can it be realized? How is the term “campus equity” mobilized in different spaces? How does “campus equity” come to be represented and recognized?
  • What do recent calls for “faculty remediation” by scholars such as Shaun Harper in his recent speech “Toward Equity in Degree Completion” mean in a labor context? How can academic labor conversations help undo disparities in representation, retention rates, graduation rates and other measures of student success? How do the rhetorics and discourses of the “achievement gap” (which is actually an “integration gap” and institutional failure) risk generating faculty protectionism, and what can be done to correct this tendency? If there is a tendency to shift deficit-model thinking from the students to the faculty, how can we instead hold institutions accountable for institutional change while also supporting changes that need to take place in the classroom and in other aspects of faculty life?
  • How has the emergence of a field called “critical university studies” affected academic work? How has critical university studies been defined, and how might it more fully address labor issues? Conversely, how can academic labor studies more fully account for critical issues such as decolonizing the university, neoliberalism, academic repression, militarized education, diversity and inclusion?

Submita piece of not more than 10,000 words in length (including abstract, notes and citations) to by April 15, 2018.


We welcome scholarly articles, reports, policies, position statements, essays, organizing and advocacy toolkits, photographs, photographic essays, personal narratives, social science research, original art, artifacts of curated performance art, op-eds, reviews in print and multimedia formats, etc. We also welcome histories of academic labor efforts; for instance, if your institution or program has engaged in efforts to establish or improve practices and policies and would like to have a backup location for archiving the papers, please send them our way and we will work with you on creating a secure, digital file. If you do not see a genre mentioned that you are interested in pursuing, please contact the lead editors, Sue Doe and Janelle Adsit (; ALRA has no minimum required word count. Aligned with ALRA’s mission to encourage conversation among a broad range of stakeholders, we welcome shorter pieces, including briefs, on topics aligned with the journal’s mission and aims.