Editor Lee Skallerup Bessette (Georgetown University) has issued a call for submissions for a collection of short essays entitled, Terms of Service: Affective Labor and Alt-Ac Careers, which will be released by the University of Kansas Press. This collection seeks to focus on “the experience of those who have chosen alt-ac careers (aka ‘staff’)”:
Librarians are the exception, however, writing eloquently about the affective elements of their role on campus, particularly as they embody both a liminal and feminized space (see Logsdon, Alexis, Amy Mars & Heather Tompkins. “Claiming expertise from betwixt and between: Digital humanities librarians, emotional labor, and genre theory”). Alt-ac is particularly susceptible to feminization not only because of the nature of the type of alt-ac jobs available, but also because of the gender and racial dynamics of the professoriate: the majority of tenure and tenure-track professors are white men, while women and POC are increasingly forced on to the alt-ac track, or choose to, because of the lack of options.
Alt-ac digital humanities scholars are also beginning to explore this area in their work, such as Paige Morgan’s “Not Your DH Teddy Bear” and Bethany Nowviskie’s exploration of the ethics of care. The purpose of this volume is to allows an opportunity for those in alt-ac careers to critically examine and share their affective experiences in their roles. Neither faculty, nor fully staff, alt-ac roles often find themself in in-between spaces, navigating the complex roles their positions demand, between “serving” faculty, answering to administrators, and working with students. Also, this volume hopes to explore the affective realm of those who left academia, a decision often fraught, but also entering in a new hierarchical space.
Abstracts are due October 31, 2018.