One of my former students from my years at the University of Pennsylvania recently directed my attention to this article by Thomas H. Benton. Mr. Benton (who is actually an English professor named William Pannapacker) has this simple advice for anyone who is thinking about going to graduate school in the humanities: just don't go.
My former student says that Prof. Pannapacker's reasoning in support of his advice sounds very much like what I told her when she was considering becoming a graduate student in English. So she wanted to be sure that I read this particular article.
I find myself in complete agreement with Prof. Pannapacker's views. This post on my blog will give you a few of my thoughts on the subject of graduate school. You might also want to read my academic autobiography. I haven't updated it in over three years, but it amply covers my ten-year experience as an adjunct. (Yes, ten years.) My example should serve as a warning to anyone thinking about graduate school in the humanities.
Oh, one last thing. As you read Prof. Pannapacker's article, you'll come across a reference to the infamous Bowen/Sosa report. I say something about this laughable piece of scholarship in this post.