– I talk an awful lot about the importance of writing and reading good writing here; I should probably talk more about the importance of having someone read your writing. The advice he gives here is good advice; I encourage you to read it and think about it if you want to improve your writing.
When I’m angry or uncertain, the first place I turn in my writing is to style.
To wit, the original opening line of this post was:
Friends, colleagues, countrymen: we come to bury the permission slip, not to praise it.
Right. Because what’s set me off today isn’t anger, really, though it may have a shade of frustration. It’s passivity.
Specifically, what I read as passiveness in this essay, On Writing in Grad School; the gist of which is: in general, we don’t teach graduate students how to write.
On the one hand: true.
On the other: tough shit.
To be clear, I bear no ire towards Kevin Gotkin, the author of this piece. Indeed, his grievances, the absences he’s noted in his own graduate education, truly seem to trouble him greatly, and I admire his ability to transform that sense of injustice into a cogent piece for The…
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