Thursday, September 29, 2011

Power, Status, & Academia

I found this article from the Huffinton Post during my daily procrastination. I think this may be highly applicable to academia. It's a quick read and worth a thought.

I know several in my department who have succumbed to this problem. Though they've been promoted from assistant to associate professor, this doesn't mean their status within the department or the field has increased. Human beings are pretty good and gauging where their power or status ranks compared to others. Profs who've had this happen, in my experience, do tend to take it out on their grad students.

Being a good scientist, any study finding always brings up more questions in my mind: If power without status leads to abuse, what does status without power get you? What happens when your status and power change depending on settings? What happens when those you've abused learn where you've buried the bodies, metaphorically speaking (or literally I suppose)?

1 comment:

anthea said...

Interesting article. Thank you for posting it.

Mmmm...what happens to those who've been abused when they learn where you've buried (metaphorically) the bodies? I think that it depends on what one's position in power is,'s institution etc. I actually think that this sort of abuse isn't healhy for the person who's the abuser..they must end up a fairly twisted awful individual. What happens to those who have been buried metaphorically? I think that it depends on the personality/cahracter of those buried. I suspect that a few of them will talk and tell others but that the majority won't say anything...and continue by default to be abused.