Cruelty and Kindness in Academia

Published at Chronicle Vitae on October 11, 2016.

In that climate, your own career success is of the utmost importance. Unkindness becomes a buffer between you and all the other people seeking those elusive tenure-track jobs, grants, promotions, book contracts, prestigious journal articles, named chairs, editorships, and so on. Your career begins to matter more than collaboration and pleasantries exchanged in the hall. Maybe academia is up to its ears in assholes because that is an acceptable route to the career you trained for.