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humanities 103 university of toronto quarterly, volume 73, number 1, winter 2003/4 these processes (as the Human Rights Commission complaint is intended to illustrate) equity goals are shunted to the side. Last, the >24/7= workplace of the contemporary university presents constant and sometimes insuperable challenges for women, in every employment category, faced with the demands of maternity, child rearing, elder care B and sometimes all at once. Women in the Academic Tundra could incur criticism for presenting a slanted picture of gendered academic life, since the contributors were selfselecting , responding to a call for submissions. (More essays from academics of colour and lesbian scholars would have been welcome, and only one piece is from a francophone academic; but the collection is otherwise diverse in terms of age, ability, geography, and field, with some illuminating contributions from First Nations women.) And while one respects the editors= desire to let the testimonies >speak for themselves,= a more analytical and action-oriented conclusion would have been appreciated . Overall, what is impressive about this collection is the grit, humour, and savvy of these academic survivors. While >tundra= is a >barren land= by definition, it has nonetheless a rich diversity of flora and fauna. >Tundra plants have developed many adaptations for survival,= according to The Canadian Encyclopedia. >Their low stature exploits the more favourable microclimate near the ground.= Staying >close to the ground= of experience and solidarity, with collections such as this one, allows Canadian women academics to continue to, tenaciously, flourish. (HEATHER MURRAY) Indhu Rajagopal. Hidden Academics: Contract Faculty in Canadian Universities University of Toronto Press. xx, 330. $65.00, $27.50 Indhu Rajagopal=s detailed and revealing examination of contract faculty in Canadian universities should prove to be invaluable for anyone interested in the present and future state of the academy. Rajagopal=s thorough statistical analysis not only supplies previously undocumented information about part-time faculty but also shows how academe=s long-standing dependency upon part-time labour is indicative of other changes underway within our universities, which are often as invisible as part-time faculty themselves. Rajagopal=s exposure of part-time faculty in Canadian universities, then, has a threefold aim: one, to reveal the presence, work, aspirations, and frustrations of what she argues is the most exploited body of workers in academe; two, to show how full-time faculty and university administrators benefit from this exploitation and perpetuate myths which enable it; and three, to demonstrate how exploitative labour relations between part-time and full-time faculty result from the growing >corporatization= of the university. Since universities and governments rarely keep official data on contract 104 letters in canada 2002 university of toronto quarterly, volume 73, number 1, winter 2003/4 faculty, Rajagopal=s work marks an important advance in this area. Rajagopal=s analysis is based upon surveys of part-time and full-time faculty as well as university administrators which she conducted in 1991B92, augmented by national and international studies and statistical data from the late 1990s. Her study of part-time faculty ranges widely; she surveys their terms of employment, working conditions, career aspirations, research, age, qualifications, and gender. According to her research, even though administrators, chairs, and program directors believe that part-time faculty are >indispensable,= most still >do not consider it cost efficient to collect data on part-timers, whom they consider transient.= The absence of such information, Rajagopal argues, has devastating effects upon part-time faculty, since the university=s reluctance to account for their work reveals only too clearly how it is devalued and marginalized. Through anecdotes, Rajagopal powerfully conveys the effect of such marginalization on contract academics. They often perceive themselves as >captive= to the >women=s work= of academe, characterizing themselves as the >intellectual proletariat.= Rajagopal, however, does not limit her analysis to anecdotal evidence; she also presents significant statistical evidence to underscore that the individual experiences of part-time faculty result from real, rather than perceived, exploitation. According to her studies, part-time faculty are not only subject to low wages and poor working conditions; they are also excluded from most decision-making bodies, while full-time faculty control their working conditions and act as >gate-keepers= of...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1712-5278
Print ISSN
0042-0247
Pages
pp. 103-105
Launched on MUSE
2014-07-02
Open Access
No
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