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In reading an earlier draft of this article, Johndan Johnson-Eilola commented very astutely on problems that often arise in evaluating traditional work when colleagues are not aware of what exactly it is that others do.

There is also the question about valuing traditional work in TP&R--when you discuss the issue of valuing the amount of time spent developing a multimedia project, you seem to make it sound like there's not a corresponding problem in determining the value of other work. I know from experience that faculty members frequently devalue the work of others. At a previous institution, for example, a full person discussing how to value the work of a poet made some comment about how a poem didn't count as much as an article toward TP&R because "a poem's just a short thing, like a page or two -- he can whip thirty of those out in a month." Of course, this sort of misunderstanding and devaluing is less common with traditional work, but you should admit that even for traditional work, determining value is sometimes a problem. Perhaps you can argue that the problems faced infrequently by faculty about traditional publications are endemic/nearly universal for those working in new media.

It is certainly reasonable to mention here the tension between literary and composition studies, where the latter, `younger' discipline still faces a range of misunderstanding and scorn from some members of the former; the same was probably true of the relationship between Classics and English Literature a hundred years ago when the latter was the "new discipline."

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Last revised February 3, 1997