The Slow Professor - Challenging the Culture of Speed in the Academy

The Slow Professor

Challenging the Culture of Speed in the Academy

Hide Details By Maggie Berg, & Barbara Seeber
Catégories: Education
Series: Défier
Hardcover : 9781442645561, 128 pages, University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division
Mars 2016
View Table of Contents

Table of contents

1. Time Management and Timelessness
2. Pedagogy and Pleasure
3. Research and Understanding
4. Collegiality and Community
Conclusion: Collaboration and Working Together


If there is one sector of society that should be cultivating deep thought in itself and others, it is academia. Yet the corporatisation of the contemporary university has sped up the clock, demanding increased speed and efficiency from faculty regardless of the consequences for education and scholarship.

In The Slow Professor, Maggie Berg and Barbara K. Seeber discuss how adopting the principles of the Slow movement in academic life can counter this erosion of humanistic education. Focusing on the individual faculty member and his or her own professional practice, Berg and Seeber present both an analysis of the culture of speed in the academy and ways of alleviating stress while improving teaching, research, and collegiality. The Slow Professor will be a must-read for anyone in academia concerned about the frantic pace of contemporary university life.


“It’s a beguiling book, written in controlled anger at the corporatized university, overrun by administrators and marketers.”

- Rick Salutin

"In 90 thrilling pages of text, Berg and Seeber describe the current corporatization of the college campus and urge professors to resist it with all they’ve got. ‘Thrilling’ isn't a word I often apply to books about higher education, but these pages galvanized me … I hope that college teachers will take time to savor The Slow Professor and talk about it with each other at faculty reading groups."

- Barbara King

"What Maggie Berg and Barbara Seeber are doing in The Slow Professor is protesting against the "corporatization of the contemporary university", and reminding us of a kind of "good" selfishness; theirs is a self-help book that recognises the fact that an institution can only ever be as healthy as the sum of its parts."

- Emma Rees

"While The Slow Professor has already raised some eyebrows as an example of "tenured privilege," it’s at once an important addition and possible antidote to the growing literature on the corporatization of the university."

- Colleen Flaherty

"The fact that precarious labour is becoming the norm in the academy impacts everyone, including those with tenure."

- Christina Turner

"'Thrilling' isn't a word I often apply to books about higher education, but these pages galvanized me."

- Barbara Hunt

‘A welcome part of a crucial conversation.’

- Rachel Hadas

‘Thoughtful, reflective… The best thing this book accomplishes is its unabashed encouragement to talk to our colleagues in order to increase solidarity and togetherness in the combat against changing and challenging professional environments.’

- Kate Mattocks

The Slow Professor recognizes the psychological strains of academic work, but subtly points toward explicitly political responses to the emotional toxins we absorb; but, it also avoids the fate of most subject-centred therapeutic exercises which are mainly courses in adaptation and resignation. Although it is no call to arms, no manifesto, nor a shout of defiance at the authorities, for insightful readers, the next step beyond self-awareness will be obvious.”

- Howard A. Doughty