Writing in the Discipline

In addition to the usual Fourth of July fare, this past holiday also found me scrolling through a fabulous *emancipatory* Twitter rant on academic writing and the preservation of your soul by one of my fav sociologists/Memphians Zandria Robinson. Check out what she had to say here.

One of the biggest adjustments in returning to academia was learning how to write in acadamese. A little piece of my soul died every time I had to contort my thoughts into unnatural, cold, unfeeling, antiseptic words. Academic writing simply sucks all the soul out of your words. Words should move, and if I’m unmoved then how much so is my reader. Even worse, if my audience likes these words devoid of feeling, then what does that say about who I’m keeping company with?

There is just so little intellectual excitement, or rather, the excitement is dull, lackluster, a cheap knockoff of what excitement should feel like, look like. But it’s important to maintain this active disconnect with academic writing. Yes, I write my papers within the constraints of the discipline, but I hold on to my voice. Sometimes it’s frustrating and hard, but sometimes you get reminded of the hope and the shared vision and you can struggle on another day.

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