Figure/Ground Communication talks to Simon Critchley

An interview with one of our leading contemporary philosophers
Simon Critchley, photographed in 2012
Andrew Hines talks to Simon Critchley (29 July 2012):
How did you decide to become a university professor? Was it a conscious choice?

“No” is the short answer. I went to university late. When I became a graduate student in 1985, there had been no jobs in England from 1977, and that began to stop in 1988; so from the late 70s until 1988, there were no jobs in the humanities, and certainly not in philosophy. Philosophy departments were being closed down. So, there was a little group of graduate students at the University of Essex and we all knew that there was no reason to do a Ph.D. because it would lead to nothing. We did it for that reason, just out of a sort of spite, I suppose. We would have quite liked to end up as lecturers, but you couldn’t have the ambition because there was nothing to have the ambition for. We all knew that doing a Ph.D. was a stupid idea because it would just make us less employable when we eventually did go and get proper jobs. So, I would say it was not an ambition of mine. [Read More]
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