What’s wrong in MRU’s (women’s issues revisited)

One of the goals, if not The Goal, of the women’s movement I knew was being able to chose what you want to do in life. Being forced  (psychologically) into a preset role was bad.  One ongoing argument,still around, is whether it is OK to chose to be a mother/housewife or whether you were just brainwashed enough to think that is what you wanted. Choice is a tough thing.

Fast forward to MRU’s of today. You would think that those women who have survived and prospered as full profs at the MRU of Great Distinction would have held onto that ideal. Nope. In word and deed, they have swallowed the party line. It’s called Leadership now, and it is the greatest good. Anyone who strives for less is somehow “not real MRU stuff”. Teaching, will allegedly rewarded, is still somehow something people who can’t do the real work.

What set this off? A female someone told me that “Potnia, your lab is too small”. That real leadership in research was at least a 2 R01 job, and that 3-5 trainees and a tech indicated that perhaps I was “setting my sights too low for a prof at our institution”.

Supposedly when you get tenure you are in a position to say “screw you”. But it doesn’t work that way. This is a community. There is stuff that is done and decided by committee. There are things in my department and my school that need changing. There is credibility and one’s ability to change things.  I hate this aspect of the politics, which is weighing how to respond to things, picking your battles and realizing everything is connected. I just want to do my research. But its never that simple.



2 thoughts on “What’s wrong in MRU’s (women’s issues revisited)

  1. That’s fucked up. At Janelia farm, even the “larger” groups are restricted to six people. Total. More money, of course, normally translates to higher productivity. It ought to come down to the quality and impact of your science, not the size of your group.

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