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Workshop about Public Writing with David M. Perry

Friday, April 9, 2021 at 1:00pm to 3:00pm

Virtual Event

There’s no such thing as the Ivory Tower. Colleges and universities are not isolated enclaves, and they probably never were. Public engagement is an essential part of the core mission of higher education.

But how do we reach the public? This age of constant media babble and a vast explosion of online and print publications have transformed the traditional pathways of publication, prestige, and engagement. Academics – experts in so many things – need to be part of the conversation. In fact, the variety of media voices has only made expertise and authority more important.

In this workshop, David M. Perry will lead you through the process of getting your voice into the public sphere. He will cover pragmatic topics: the art of the pitch, finding the right venue, managing social media profiles, getting paid, making it count for tenure and promotion, and protecting yourself from trolls and harassment. He will also talk about strategies to simultaneously maintain academic authority and be accessible to the broader public.

Through it all, you’ll be working on your pitches, reading essays that embody important traits, and developing your own ideas.

Over the last five years, David – once a mild-mannered medievalist – has become a columnist for Pacific Standard Magazine, with hundreds of published pieces at venues all over the world, including the New York Times, the Guardian, and the Chronicle of Higher Education. Along the way, he’s learned a lot about how to take academic expertise and share it with a much broader audience.

Going public isn’t easy, but neither is getting into graduate school, getting a PhD, or finding an academic job, so you’ve already traveled some pretty difficult paths. This workshop will start you on your way towards the next challenge.

Sponsored by: Historians Are Writers! (HAW!), History Department & Careers Beyond Academic/BEST program.

Note: This event was originally scheduled for the past academic year, but we were forced to cancel Dr. Perry’s in-person visit due to Covid-19. We want to thank the departments and programs that had originally agreed to sponsor Dr. Perry’s visit: the College of Arts and Sciences; the Society for the Humanities; the Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies; the Department of Literatures in English; the Department of Romance Studies; the Department of German Studies; the Department of Government; the Department of History of Art and Visual Studies; the American Studies Program; the Latin American Studies Program; the Public History Initiative; Flora Rose House.

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