A modest question: Should we abolish the PhD degree?

Jeff Bone jbone@jump.net
Wed, 29 Aug 2001 01:44:11 -0500

Jeff Bone wrote:

> I would say that, say, a married grad student
> couple able to afford housing in the married student housing and supported by
> grants --- while not vacationing in Aruba by any means --- is definitionally a
> part of "the leisure class."  If one cannot or will not afford that lifestyle,
> then one hasn't that option.

Let's be concise if somewhat over the top:  the academy somewhat endorses the notion
of "pay for brains," though it relies on external and (IMHO) ethically questionable
methods of raising monies for said brains.  The private sector pays for

Both of these are over-simplifications, but the question remains:  should anyone be
able to support themselves indefinitely through publically-funded and purely
intellectual creations which remain indirectly- or under- or unexploited /
uncommercialized / unvalued (and culturally and definitionally un- or invaluable) in
the public marketplace?