Key takeaways


  • “The most important thing for a first-year graduate student to do is to figure out where they stand ideologically.”
  • Gradually, over the next few years, I got the lay of the professional terrain I’d entered into. It was marked not only by a relentless animus against the works of the past (and the “dead white men” who wrote them), but by a constant effort to enlist them in contemporary battles; by an enthrallment with jargon, a commitment to verbal opacity, and a suspicion of clear, conversational prose; by intellectual dishonesty and flabbiness and sloppiness, all implicitly excused by the alleged rightness of the cause; by an adolescent sense of moral superiority; by a pervasive atmosphere of ideological surveillance.
  • The goal was advancement, not truth.