There are some great discussions going on right now, but I'm too covered up with students and grading and committees to do any of them justice. Instead I'd just like to share a quick note about academic fantasies.
I finished my Ph.D. in 1996. Since then it has been my continuing dream to go back to school. There's just no life I love better than that of a grad student. Of course, anything I might want to take wouldn't actually advance my career. Often I consider ditching everything and running off to an MFA program. Hello. My Ph.D. is in creative writing. This wouldn't exactly be a move forward. Once I was going to apply for a Ph.D. program at Duke and just get a degree in another field of English. What can I say? I drove through North Carolina and thought it was pretty.
Often my fantasies actually stray toward other disciplines. I'd like MAs in history, philosophy, and graphic design.
I never fantasize about taking courses that would allow me to make more money. I'm just an arts and humanities girl through and through.
I could, however, change the particulars of my current job by getting another MA. Instead of two sections of literature and four sections of composition every semester, perhaps I could teach two lits, two comps, and two comparative religion classes. Wouldn't that be nice?
Ah, well. We all need our dreams.