At a meeting today I met a faculty member from the Business School. I asked a couple polite questions about his background and the organization of the Business School and learned an awful lot. He hastened to assure me that most of the faculty in the B-School did not, in fact, have corporate backgrounds -- most of them were "just academics." He said, laughing, "what people in psychology or sociology don't often realize is that they could have done the same research in a Business School and wind up making a lot more money!" Ha ha. I'm really laughing with you there, buddy, since you probably pull in at least $60,000 more than I do. (We in the humanities are the least-paid faculty at our U). He also tried to impress me by telling me several times that he had been at a lecture earlier today where someone was talking about Wittgenstein and information management systems. Woo-hoo. You guys really are intellectuals.
Maybe he is. It doesn't really affect me one way or the other. But it was interesting to see how defensive he was, how hard he was trying to prove to me that he knew the word "postmodern."
Never once in our 20 minute conversation (we were seated next to each other during the lunch segment of the meeting) did he ask me what I research or teach. Because, of course, the professional school folks usually assume that they already know what "English" means.
Serving in the faculty senate will at the very least provide some anthropological entertainment as I meet people from around the university.