LOST IS FOUND
NAVIGATING NARRATIVES OF PROFESSIONAL IDENTITY ON THE TENURE TRACK
Keywords:tenure track, narrative inquiry, collocation, liminal space, visual methodology
The tenure track is a contentious space in which pre-tenure faculty are asked to navigate the corporatization of the university, and uncertainty with regards to the expectations of success to achieve tenure. In this article, we frame the period of pre-tenure as a liminal space, not as a space of inadequacy but as a necessary shelter of respite. Living in a temporary autonomous zone, we find ourselves challenged to lose and find varying aspects of our professional identities as faculty. We use arts-based narratives in the form of micro-storymaking as well as Solnit’s (2005) discussion of what it means to be lost to locate and (re)frame our stories of navigating the tenure track. We argue that the liminal space of pre-tenure, in the context of the “slow” movement is a time of openings that prepare us to embrace and engage in passionate artistic practices as we enter mid-career.
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