The Essay Essay Returns!

Finally, the sequel to “The End of the College Essay” you never asked for. For the past two months, I’ve wondered why the fuck so many thousands of academics bathed me in the flames of their righteous, essay-defending anger.

I’ve finally figured it out–but the reason my surprise you.


4 thoughts on “The Essay Essay Returns!

  1. I would imagine most of these folks are also adjuncts? I wonder what happens when a student turns in an essay that happens to have been written by their instructor for one of these services. 😉 Awkward!


  2. What’s really caught my attention is the hypocrisy of it all. During my time as full time faculty (ten years), I’ve heard about faculty recruiting other faculty to write papers. In some cases, this was paid work and the researcher’s name would not appear on the submission. In other cases, it was a “team effort” where one person would do most of the work and the other would clean up the language—both names appearing on the publication. To be clear, I know lots of faculty who do their own work…but I also know others (paid, unpaid, been paid), who engage in the other methods…

    Schuman, you’re the best!


    • At my institution we have a married couple who for the last five years have co-authored basically every single thing they’ve published. They’re not even in the same department — one is in social science, the other in humanities. The social science publications they put out are 100% social science, and the humanities papers are 100% humanities, without any real overlap that would indicate true interdisciplinarity. And, despite the fact that the *soc. sci.* partner had been incapacitated and on sick leave for nearly a year, he still managed to publish three *humanities* articles — one as first author, two as second. Now, these two are either the “Dream Team” … or they’re just dividing up the work in such a way that neither one of them has to actually work a full-time TT job in order to gain tenure, promotion, and merit raises. My hunch is the latter. Needless to say they both get promotions and merit raises at the same times. Talk about a 2-Body Boon for them!


      • On the other hand? FAIR ENOUGH! If higher ed.’s mantra is “Publish or Perish,” then it’s about survival. Etiquette and ethics are allowed to be tossed out when it becomes a matter of survival.


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