"There is always a philosophy for lack of courage."—Albert Camus

Saturday, October 06, 2007

The Odd and Interesting World that is Academics

Academia is a strange place. There's really no other way to describe it. I was perusing the job announcements at the Chronicle of Higher Education and came across this announcement for a job at the University of Ottawa. (Not really interested in living in the northern reaches of the American Cultural Empire, but gotta look anyway...) Now, most job announcements have the typical boilerplate about especially wanting minorities and women to apply, but this one had a bit of a different wrinkle. It says: "The University of Ottawa is committed to diversity and encourages applications from women, aboriginal peoples, members of visible minorities and persons with disabilities." (emphasis added)

"Visible" minorities? Why add the "visible"? What sort of work is that doing?

2 comments:

John H. Watson said...

It's a defensive measure against shepherds armed with the ring of Gyges.

David S. Bloch said...

Heh.

Seriously, I'd imagine the idea here is that the good doyennes at Ottawa want to ensure that they hire minorities that LOOK like minorities, not merely people with ethnic-sounding last names.

Which is appalling, BTW. But that's the way I'd read "visible minorities."