ERIC Number: ED304063
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988
A Discourse on Professorial Melancholia.
Machell, David F.
The concept of professorial melancholia is introduced and discussed. Professorial melancholia is defined as a progressive emotional process characterized by the negating of a university professor's professional motivation, positive attitudinal focus, and adequate personal self-esteem. The beliefs and environmental and personal factors found in the academic life that contribute to the three stages of professorial melancholia are discussed. Two irrational beliefs, that one must excel in all areas and be loved/approved of by everyone, are considered to be underlying factors, which may be exacerbated by the transition from being a graduate student to being a faculty member, with the resultant changes in the nature of relationships with both students and faculty and change from a nurturing to a non-nurturing environment. The three stages are defined as early (where causal factors are beginning to have their detrimental effect), middle (where the influence of the initial causal factor is progressing and having a noticeable impact), and late (where the impact on the professor's environment, performance and lifestyle is most noticeable and negative). Counseling treatment that directly addresses the professorial role dysfunction is recommended. It is considered vital for therapists to see these issues in their totality, as important lifestyle and life support concerns that need to be addressed. Contains 19 references. (KM)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A