The Politics of Survival in Academia

Narratives of Inequity, Resilience, and Success

Foreword by George D. Spindler Contributions by Maria Chun, Eugenia Cowan, Concha Delgado-Gaitan, Chalsa M. Loo, Peter Nien-chu Kiang, George Spindler, Myriam N. Torres, Yali Zou Edited by Lila Jacobs, José Cintrón, Cecil E. Canton

Paperback - £34.00

Publication date:

23 November 2002

Length of book:

200 pages


Rowman & Littlefield Publishers

ISBN-13: 9780742523685

This volume presents the personal accounts of African American, Asian American, and Latino faculty who use "narratives of struggles" to describe the challenges they faced in order to become bona fide members of the U.S. Academy. These narratives show how survival and success require a sophisticated knowledge of the politics of academia, insider knowledge of the requirements of legitimacy in scholarly efforts, and resourceful approach to facing dilemmas between cultural values, traditional racist practices, and academic resilience. The book also explores the empowerment process of these individuals who have created a new self without rejecting their "enduring" self, the self strongly connected to their ethno/racial cultures and groups. Within the process of self -redefinition, this new faculty confronted racism, sexism, rejection, the clash of cultural values, and structural indifference to cultural diversity. The faculty recounts how they ultimately learned the skillful accommodation to all of these issues. It is through the analysis of survival and self-definition that women and faculty of color will establish a powerful foothold in the new academy of the twenty-first century.
The stories told in this book serve as a reminder that subtle forms of discrimination, which cannot be fully captured by quantified research, are powerful and deserve attention.