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psstein last won the day on September 15 2019

psstein had the most liked content!


About psstein

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  • Location
    East Coast USA
  • Application Season
    Not Applicable
  • Program
    Left with MA

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  1. Yes, unfortunately. Having just gotten off an interview with a consulting firm, they're also getting hammered. Plus, I wouldn't overestimate the value of a PhD to them, at least based on people I've spoken to in them. FWIW, of course. @Sigaba makes an excellent point. The private sector is bad right now. The public sector is teetering on an apocalypse. Many states have had irresponsible or outright incompetent budget management for years. With COVID-19, the day of financial reckoning draws nigh.
  2. To your last point, yes. Part of the withdrawal of history into ever-increasingly narrow and specialized niches has had the effect of making historical scholarship arcane, inaccessible, and generally not too useful to people outside of academia. That's not a criticism of any specialized field, for the record. I actually find some of that work fascinating (e.g. Andrew Warwick's work on mathematical physics education at Cambridge). But, speaking from my history of science/medicine perch, my subdiscipline has actively disengaged from its original mission and attempted to become more integrated wi
  3. Yes and no. A lot of US graduates have the same thoughts. Plus, the overwhelming likelihood of non-US employment is not a nice position somewhere in Europe. The countries investing most heavily in higher education at this point are repressive petrostates like Saudi Arabia (there was an opening not too long ago at King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals) and equally as repressive countries like China.
  4. Good post and one that really bears repeating. Leaving with the MA was one of the best decisions I've ever made. And for the record, I see the "alt-ac" thing as a crock. With a few exceptions, "alt-ac" jobs are jobs you can hold with a PhD, not jobs requiring a PhD. I'm sorry, but your dissertation on discourses on bodily fluids in the 18th century or the literary culture of immigrants in the early 20th century isn't a key element of becoming an insurance adjuster or a grants manager. These are jobs you can hold with the PhD. By the way, if I sound angry about this, it's because I am. Am
  5. These are some very interesting questions. I don't think Wisconsin's faculty would be the worst match for those interests, but one of them is likely to retire shortly and the options outside of her may not be the best for your interests. I also believe the program there has some structural problems that I'd caution thinking carefully about before applying. There's an excellent essay in Francisco Scarano (ed.) Colonial Crucible: Empire in the Making of the Modern American State discussing the US South's role as a "tropical other." Natalie Ring's The Problem South and Todd Savitt and James
  6. Agreed. Just from my own experience, there are a lot of microfilmed/online materials that need studying. Seminar papers can turn into dissertation ideas quite easily... had I stayed in my program, one of mine would have.
  7. Bar-Ilan may not be a bad choice, if you're open to Israel. They're not as conservative as somewhere like Gordon-Conwell, to my knowledge, but there are some very good, conservative-leaning faculty.
  8. I very strongly agree with you. It's to your detriment, if you want to get into any of the programs worth attending (in terms of academic job placement) to portray yourself in the strongest possible light. And, in some cases, that means omitting the "struggles" that far too many people think give an application depth.
  9. I said this a few pages back, but I suspect that programs that don't "have" to take a new graduate cohort will try to avoid doing taking one.
  10. That's very similar to what I've heard as well. Many of those smaller colleges already have enough of a problem keeping the lights on and paying out faculty/staff salaries and benefits. I see some universities further reducing their humanities graduate programs and, in some cases, eliminating or consolidating them.
  11. I would echo this call, but add that one should also approach this with an understanding of the existing academic job market in mind. It's been over a year since I looked at it closely, but the opportunities for a historian of capitalism are dramatically better than those of a historian of education. Of the last 4-5 openings at my former program, 3 went to scholars who had a significant focus on the history of capitalism.
  12. I would also suggest that some faculty aren't always keenly attuned to the administrative parts of any department. While I was still in graduate school, both of my supervisors were very much of that mold. TT or tenured faculty have many important things on their plates at any given time. Bureaucracy usually is not among the more important elements.
  13. No, they won't. Certain advisors have different approaches to language proficiency. My colleague's first advisor (who took medical retirement, otherwise I would've worked with him too) required his students to translate Foucault from the original French, in front of him. Others require their students to take the university-offered courses.
  14. Even earlier, I'd argue. George Gliddon, an American Egyptologist who was very influential in the development of scientific racism, gave a series of very popular lectures on Ancient Egypt in the 1840s and 50s. And that's just off the top of my head.
  15. I suspect the schools that can "afford," for lack of a better word, to not have an incoming cohort will not have one. I'm not sure what Wisconsin plans on doing, either. Certainly it's going to be very competitive getting into graduate school this Fall.
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