Research Leave "Vacation"
One of the very minor frustrations of being a professor is that one gets criticized (usually in jest) for getting a variety of "vacations." Now it's true that the freedom that comes with not having to keep a set schedule in the summers and during research leaves is one of the greatest perks of the professor job. But in my experience, I often end up putting in more hours during the summers and on leave than I do when I'm teaching (partially because teaching hours are more tiring and so I can justify not working until midnight every night when I'm teaching).
Here's what I've written since May, when classes ended:
"An Anglo-Saxonist Gets His Fifteen Minutes (or, what happens when the media briefly pay attention)," Old English Newsletter (2004), also available on line at the Old English Newsletter site.
[in press] “A Re-Assessment of the Efficacy of Anglo-Saxon Medicine” with Barbara Brennessel and Robyn Gravel, Anglo-Saxon England.
“The Problem of Transformation: The Use of Medieval Sources in Fantasy Literature” Literature Compass 1 (2004) ME 101, 1-22.
[in press] "Bibliography (in English) for 2003," Tolkien Studies 2 (2005), ; with Melissa Smith-MacDonald.
[forthcoming] “Texts that Speak to Readers Who Learn: Towards a Better Tolkien Criticism” in Robert Eaglestone, ed. Re-Reading the Lord of the Rings. London: Continuum, 2005.
[forthcoming] “The Rhetorical Evolution of ‘Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics” in Wayne Hammond and Christina Scull, eds. Scholarship in Honor of Richard E. Blackwelder, Marquette UP, 2006.
under consideration] “Blood and Deeds: The Inheritance Systems in Beowulf.”
[under consideration] “’The Partridge’ is a Phoenix: Revising the Exeter Book Physiologus.”
Tolkien Studies 2 (2005); with Douglas A. Anderson and Verlyn Flieger.
The Table of Contents of The J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia: Scholarship and Critical Assessment, ed. Michael D.C. Drout [forthcoming 2006, Routledge]. A complete encyclopedia in one volume, approx. 815 pages (500,000 words) [this was way more work than it sounds, since I had to come up with all of the entries, describe each one, give it a word count and assign it to a scholar].
College Course on CD / Course Guide
Geoffrey Chaucer: Bard of the Middle Ages14 lectures on CD; 100-page course guide with discussion, essay questions, glossary, suggested reading. Recorded Books:The Modern Scholar: 2005.
Then we could add in the invited lectures:
“Understanding J.R.R. Tolkien and The Lord of the Rings,” Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA, September 22, 2004.
“The Rhetorical Evolution of ‘Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics’” The Lord of the Rings, 1954-2004: Scholarship in Honor of Richard E. Blackwelder. Oct 21-24, 2004. Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI.
“Tolkien and the Middle Ages” Outreach Seminar for Secondary School Teachers, Institute for Medieval Studies at the University of New Mexico, October 30, 2004.
“J. R. R. Tolkien and The Lord of the Rings.” Wrentham Public Library, Wrentham, MA, January 11, 2005.
“The Lord of the Rings: What Didn’t Make the Director’s Cut.” Duxbury Free Library, Duxbury, MA, January 19, 2004.
Just reading this is exhausting. Getting back to full-time teaching next week will be a nice vacation...