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(A colloquium is a sort of writing workshop for graduate students.) The essay was about Thomas Kuhn, the historian of science.Kuhn had coined the term “paradigm shift,” and I described how this phrase had been used and abused, much to Kuhn’s dismay, by postmodern insurrectionists and nonsensical self-help gurus.If you live in the UK you can buy the book or ebook If you live in the US you can buy the book or ebook If you live in Australia, you can buy the book or ebook.
Professors pointed out that the brainiest part of the blogosphere is overflowing with contributions from academics; that, as teachers, professors already have an important audience in their students; and that the itself frequently benefits from professorial ingenuity, which the paper often reports as news.
(A number of the stories in the Sunday Review section, in which Kristof’s article appeared, were written by professors.) To a degree, some of the responses, though convincingly argued, inadvertently bolstered Kristof’s case because of the style in which they were written: fractious, humorless, self-serious, and defensively nerdy.
Academic writing is the way it is because it’s part of a system.
Professors live inside that system and have made peace with it.
But every now and then, someone from outside the system swoops in to blame professors for the writing style that they’ve inherited.
This week, it was Nicholas Kristof, who set off a rancorous debate about academic writing with a column, in the , called “Professors, We Need You!People seemed to like the essay, but they were also uneasy about it.“I don’t think you’ll be able to publish this in an academic journal,” someone said. Academic writing is a fraught and mysterious thing.A three-volume essay writing course for students in American English.Academic Writing Skills 1 takes students through a step-by-step process from writing a paragraph to essays.The pressure on established journalists is to generate traffic.New and clever forms of content are springing up all the time—GIFs, videos, “interactives,” and so on.That’s because journalism, which is in the midst of its own transformation, is moving in a populist direction.There are more writers than ever before, writing for more outlets, including on their own blogs, Web sites, and Twitter streams.He thought it was more like something you’d read in a magazine. If you’re an academic in a writerly discipline, such as history, English, philosophy, or political science, the most important part of your work—practically and spiritually—is writing.Many academics think of themselves, correctly, as writers.