That's "Associate Professor" To You

For the past few weeks there was a glitch in my Blogger FTP settings, which prevented me from putting up new posts here (though I have still been putting things up at Sepia Mutiny on occasion). I finally fixed the problem this afternoon, which means I can start posting a bit again.

One nice announcement -- I was formally granted tenure at Lehigh this year, ending the long uncertainty that every academic has to deal with.

How does it feel? Well, it feels good, though there is suddenly more administrative work and committee work to deal with.

The idea of tenure is, you're supposed to use the academic freedom you've earned to do serious and original research without worrying about your job prospects. You can spend ten years researching a monumental project, if you want. Or, you can go off and write a novel instead of doing criticism. You can become a hard core academic blogger, bypassing traditional publishing venues. You can even, in theory, do nothing at all, though that would be a waste.

In my case, I am in the middle of a short book-length project on Mira Nair that I am supposed to finish in the next few months. I am also nearly done with at least three separate articles, on 1) Tagore's Travel Writing, 2) Sa'adat Hasan Manto, and 3) a revised version of the "Secular Sikh Writers" essay I mentioned back in April. I'm also still sitting on an only partially revised essay on G.V. Desani, which was actually written nearly two years ago.

So -- a lot to get done before I "go off and write my novel."