Caveat emptor

Tue Sep 17 10:35:42 UTC 2013

Absolutely correct, Sebastian. But we all know that most people do not do PhDs in typology in order to do accounting, etc. 

A PhD is normally seen as the way into an academic career. And I see far too many unemployed and underemployed  PhDs in the humanities. To give an example, adjunct faculty in the business disciplines usually have full careers, well-compensated, and do teaching as a satisfying way to interact with future professionals. Adjuncts in the humanities are either retired or, most commonly, underemployed folks trying to piece together a career from the leavings of full-time faculty. They wanted the tenure-track/permanent position. And they still do. And it is wrong to overproduce in this way.

Saying that there are other things they can do would be fine for BAs or MAs in linguistics. But a PhD is overkill for positions not in or even only tangentially related to  the field of study. 


On Sep 17, 2013, at 5:59 AM, Sebastian Nordhoff wrote:

> On Mon, 16 Sep 2013 18:59:24 +0200, Everett, Daniel <DEVERETT at> wrote:
>> I am posting this because linguistics is one of the disciplines I think needs to consider this seriously. There are too many academics in the liberal arts with no chance of full-time, secure employment in the area in which they have done their PhD.
> I might note that there are job possibilities outside of "the area where they have done their PhD". Getting a PhD in Typology does not necessarily mean that the only career opportunities are within the, indeed restricted, field of academic linguistics.
> Best wishes
> Sebastian

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