Friday, December 3, 2010

Correspondence

Laura Sjoberg writes:
At least be respectful enough to leave off with the "Ms. Sjoberg" crap and call me professor or doctor or whatever you call yourself. And, oh yea, tell me when you pick a fight, and I might actually argue with you. If you had an argument to make better than not wanting to understand, of course.

Fair points in the last two sentences. On the other hand...

FLG didn't mean any offense by Ms. If FLG were in your class, then he'd call you professor, but he's not and so he won't. But holy fucking shit -- "call me professor or doctor" -- are you really one of those people?

FLG calls himself FLG. Then again, he doesn't have a doctorate, but even if he did he certainly wouldn't insist people refer to him as Dr. FLG, like some pretentious jackass.

PS. FLG is aware that referring to himself in the third person, but it's part of the shtick here at Fear and Loathing in Georgetown.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Per:

"FLG calls himself FLG. Then again, he doesn't have a doctorate, but even if he did he certainly wouldn't insist people refer to him as Dr. FLG, like some pretentious jackass."

FLG, the pretentious jackass you are referring to is the one who is demanding respect from you while penning this, correct?:

"If you had an argument to make better than not wanting to understand, of course."

That would be the same doctor or professor who wrote this to the editor she was taking out to the woodshed:

"You sent my work to people who just don't understand, and, fundamentally, don't want to. Which is their prerogative, but I thought your journal was (and it should be) above that."


FLG, she's not a pretentious jackass -she's a bitch. She'll be a more content feminist in the long run if she accepts the fact people are understanding her work - and rejecting it.


Mrs. P

The Ancient said...

It is limitlessly vulgar for an academic with a PhD to call himself/herself "doctor."

In this country, a "doctor" is a physician.

Academics who don't like that can learn German and go practice their trade elsewhere.

FLG -- Why not institute a Barbara Boxer Prize for Ostentatious Pomposity?

Alpheus said...

Wow. I have an endless supply of complaints about academia, but I've met very few Ph.D.s/Professors who insist on their title like this. As the Ancient says, it's pretty vulgar. Even in academic publications, it would be unusual, nowadays, to refer to another scholar as "Dr." or "Professor" so-and-so.

(That said, I'd like to be known as "Lord Alpheus.")

FLG said...

Would you accept Dark Lord Alpheus? Or Darth Alpheus?

arethusa said...

It is limitlessly vulgar for an academic with a PhD to call himself/herself "doctor."

In this country, a "doctor" is a physician.

Academics who don't like that can learn German and go practice their trade elsewhere.


Second that. If nothing else, imagine what might happen if someone knows you as "Dr. So-n-so" but doesn't realize you're a PhD, and comes running to you for help when their beloved family member suddenly collapses.

Withywindle said...

In a Peanuts strip, I think from the 1970s, Snoopy types a story:

The actor on the stage collapsed. The stage manager rushed to the front of the stage. "Is there a doctor in the house?" he yelled. Howard stood up. "I have an honorary doctorate from the University of Minnesota," he called out. It was at that moment his wife decided to leave him.

Alpheus said...

Would you accept Dark Lord Alpheus? Or Darth Alpheus?

Well, I do spend a lot of time practicing light saber moves in the garage . . .

David said...

"imagine what might happen if someone knows you as "Dr. So-n-so" but doesn't realize you're a PhD"

A guy with a PhD in electrical engineering and a very important executive job signed in at a doctors office as "Dr so-n-so". The physician, noticing the title, moved him to the front of the line, ahead of all the other people who were waiting. But after asking him what kind of medicine he practiced, the doc sent him back out to the waiting room to wait for his turn....

profmondo said...

In civilian life, I only use the title "Doctor" in self-defense, when some other grad-school graduate uses it on me first.

As for Prof. Mondo, he's a rhetorical mode, or as FLG says, part of the schtick.

I think what determined it for me was when one of my high school bands was rehearsing at my house. When the guitarist's mom (a speech therapist) came to pick him up, she introduced herself to my mother: "Hi, I'm So-and-so, Ph.D." Without missing a beat, my mother replied, "I'm Madge Moore, M-O-M."

Not too much room for pretense at my house.

Withywindle said...

Also: "They call me Dr. Tibbs."

dance said...

Contrary position: she's writing as an academic about academic topics. Thus, "Ms" is actively inaccurate and misleading in this context. Just plain Sjoberg would be fine, but Ms goes out of your way to hint she doesn't have the credentials that would give her credibility and expertise in this issue.

And most of the comments agreeing with you snark on the demand for Dr when it's out of context. In this case it's not.

 
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