How Work Reviews Can Be Read as Your Colleagues Telling You They Hate You: By the Way, It's Really about How Institutions Resist Curricular Change, Too
Weinbaum, Batya S., Women in Judaism
Batya Weinbaum, a former assistant professor in the English department at Cleveland State University (CSU) in Ohio, sued the university for sex discrimination in her treatment and the decision to terminate her in violation of Ohio state laws. A full case summary is available at http://www.aauw.org/laf/cases/weinbaum.cfm Learn more about tenure issues from the AAUW Legal Advocacy Fund by visiting http://www.aauw.org/laf/library/tenure.cfm
"What universities can and must resist are deliberate, overt attempts to impose orthodoxy and suppress dissent ... In recent years, the threat of orthodoxy has come primarily from within rather than from outside the university."
--Derek Bok, retiring pres. of Harvard, 1991
"In the past, systematic threats to academic freedom have been external. Today, however, the threat to academic freedom comes from within. The barbarians are not at the gates; they are inside the walls."
American Council of Trustees and Alumni Statement on Academic Freedom 6/24/02
 I am playing transformations by Alice Coltrane every night. My sense of self has been destroyed ... I am the CSU shaman who collects students' stories and suggests changes in the curriculum. Who gathers stories and suggests new courses. Who comes here with Ph.D. at age 46, seeks new job offers but develops deepened ties with colleagues and relationships with students, brings in speakers, gets my university into the papers.... who brings Octavia Butler to campus ... who brings Diana Diprima to campus ... who brings native poets to classes.... who develops and offers new courses on Asian American lit, Native American Women's Writing, Jewish American lit, who ... does oral histories in the peace movement in Israel.... who brings out a book to national reviews on Amazon archetype in world lit ... who ... gets two other book contracts ... whose three other books are in the library ... whose twenty four other pieces of short scholarship since coming to the university didn't qualify for tenure.... whose majority of teaching evaluations in the fourth (top) quartile didn't help either ...
willfully degrading; dominating and subverting; subverting through cunning; manipulating; threatening to degrade; willful intent to destroy; bringing down morality through any possible means; operating as the invisible other
 The above are codes gleaned from Stephen Carr's analysis of anti-Semitism. (i) The codes appeared in various letters written in my fourth year work review, which ultimately led to my receiving a terminal contract, without a hearing--and the effects of the terminal contract began before the announcement of a post-termination arbitration hearing were out.
 I perform this exploration in the spirit of the journal which encourages examination of the mundane aspects of our lives, and subjection of every day aspects of work situations to serious analysis and micro-inspection. I am examining in detail the mundane, exposing the normal to examination of intricate processes, and in doing so interpreting literacies to include the reading not only of books, arts and films, but reading and writing the world and reading and writing oneself into the world, and in relation to the world.
 In some ways, the letters written do not appear to me to be normal. Although passed off as normal, they appear abnormal. They appear to many readers outside of the immediate workplace context in which they were produced and circulated as psychologically abnormal, yet they were passed off as normal, within the group itself.
 Furthermore, what is more frightening, they successfully (so far--as I write, the process is being either sustained or reversed by an outside arbitrator after sixteen days of McCarthy-esque hearings) assassinated my character and had the effect of chasing me out of the university where I was doing good work and publishing at the rate of a superstar, as well as surveying students on their interests in multicultural literature offerings and presenting this data to the Committee on Instruction in a conservative, British literature dominated Department of English that didn't ever have time to analyze the data, but had time to generate letters of personal attack on me to get me out instead. …