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Success Stories

I write a lot about graduate school and graduate student life — mostly because I’m responsible for training graduate students myself, which has forced me to figure out… well… what to tell graduate students to do. As a result, my thinking out loud on the blog has mostly been for my own sake, as I try to present my best approximation of the advice that I’d like to give people and the state of my thoughts at the present moment. I was really, psyched, therefore, to get an email from an SM reader who I’d corresponded with briefly who had actually followed some of that advice and successfully gotten into a graduate school they really wanted to go to. Lordy — it works! It’s always nice to know that your online ruminations actually amount to a hill of beans, or at least take the form of a metaphorical bean which, along with others, presents a hill on which future anthropologists can climb climb climb until they reach that Ph.D. program in the sky. Of course it’s also nice to know when you’ve done something to totally screw people up as well. So just a reminder — if you find SM useful, feel free to let us know either via email or in comments.


Alex Golub is an associate professor of anthropology at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. His book Leviathans at The Gold Mine has been published by Duke University Press. You can contact him at rex@savageminds.org

3 thoughts on “Success Stories

  1. So, I was recently at the Hammer, here in LA, watching a film about the history of ACT UP. Afterwards, a man approached me, and I recognized him as a fellow member from 25 years ago, aged as have I. “Thank God for Media Praxis,” he said unexpectedly. It took me a socially awkward minute to comprehend what he was saying. Cuz, that’s my blog. And, it turns out, Dudley is a grateful reader! I blog because I like a frequent writing space, and I cherish community. While I know how many people read me, I hardly know who, and readers rarely interact. It often feels like talking to a void, not Dudley. In the blog, and elsewhere, I’ve been interacting with feminist grad students in my field in the aftermath of a particularly strange panel at our recent SCMS (Society for Cinema and Media Studies) on Feminist Academic Blogging. I’ve remarked that commenting is as vital a part of the commitment as writing: that is, if we are interested in creating communities in these spaces, as well as empowering voices. Hence, my comment. I read you, and thanks!
    Alex Juhasz

  2. Not an anth student (but I’m in the humanities) and think that your pieces on conferences are the most awesome and helpful articles on the subject. Sick of people telling me how to give a paper (just read your paper; never just read your paper; always use powerpoints; powerpoints are demonic) and really just wanted to know how conferences _worked_.

    I had to go to my first conference last month and present a paper. I’m only in my first year of my PhD, and, quite frankly, I was shitting myself. Your articles really helped me work out how to get through it. I liked the reflexivity and the no-not-really-serious-but-okay-it-is-really-like-that tone underpinning the whole thing. And this line: ‘If you are a graduate student, don’t feel bad that you are hanging out with the other graduate students while the Famous People are off in some mysterious, glamorous, undisclosed location. Soon you and your new friends will become the Famous People and then your victory will be complete.’ —best advice ever. And it strokes the ego. Win for all.

    tldr: you. awesome.

  3. And there are some of us who are still undecided about taking the leap to apply to a PhD programme but fill our waking hours with reading SM & Co. to get our fix meanwhile. Thank you for enriching our nonacademic lives with the stuff we dream about.

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