My name is Daniel Mullin and I’m a philosophy PhD and part-time teacher. The other part of the time, I’m unemployed and/or looking for work. I’ve been relatively successful in finding work in the traditional job market for philosophy — teaching at universities — but that market consists mainly of contract positions that don’t really provide a liveable wage. Also, in order to get them, you have to be willing to live a transitory lifestyle, moving wherever and whenever there’s work. The tenure track job is still the holy grail, but there’s a lot of competition for those in a market that’s shrinking. What’s a guy with a philosophy degree to do? The conventional wisdom tells him that there aren’t many other options. The purpose of this blog is to challenge that conventional wisdom and explore innovative ways to use one’s philosophical background. I want to make a case for the value and versatility of an education in philosophy. I’m not an expert on this, so I’ll be learning, hopefully, along with everybody else. I’ve also launched a podcast devoted to these themes. You can find the rss feed here. Thanks for visiting!

24 comments on “About

  1. elkement says:

    Thanks for following my blog, too! I really like your blog – how you explore different topics from a philosopher’s perspective, how you make the best of your situation, and how you try aim at realizing your full potential. Have you considered starting a business of your own? I have learned some years ago that “philosophical practices” run by self-employed trained philosophers have been first founded in North America.

    • danielmullin81 says:

      You’re welcome! Your blog looks fascinating and I look forward to exploring it further. I’m considering different employment and self-employment options and I recently interviewed a ‘philosophical practitioner’ for my podcast (which you can find on this blog). Thanks for the compliments and the advice. If you think of any other knowledge monetization strategies for philosophers, please let me know!

    • But does anybody really go and seek the advice of a “philosophical practice” – and wants to pay for it? I somehow have a feeling I would mainly receive calls from people in a depression who are close to committing suicide.

      • danielmullin81 says:

        The answer to both questions is yes. Check out episode 3 of my podcast, which you can find on this blog or on iTunes, and the upcoming episode 5 for further discussion of this topic.

      • Jake says:

        Even many psychologists who once had thriving counseling practices are being hit and have been for some time. Health Insurance won’t pay for a philosophy counselor. I’ve heard various people talk about it, but almost not one make a living at it (a real living, where they can pay their overhead (usually more than you think it will be), afford health insurance, a family, etc.). I’d love to hear about people who are, though.

      • danielmullin81 says:

        There are a lucky few who make a living at it, but you’re correct that most do it in a supplemental capacity.

  2. elkement says:

    The podcast is great, thanks for the pointer. I believe you would make a great journalist. I would assume that a training in philosophy is the perfect preparation for analyzing the “complex and interdisciplinary issues” (as cliché as that may sound) prevalent today, such as the interdependencies of technology and society.

    • danielmullin81 says:

      So glad you enjoyed the podcast. Perhaps journalism would be a good fit. Some philosophy majors do pursue that career. I enjoy writing and speaking, so maybe if I have some success with the blog and podcast, I’ll try to move in that direction professionally.

  3. agreenmoon says:

    saying thanks for your blog…I chose you as one of my nominations for an appreciation award…you can see the info in my post:

    Thanks again

  4. James says:

    Your blog is cool. Congrats on being featured on WordPress’ Freshly Squeezed. That’s no easy task. Be interesting to see where this goes.

  5. danielmullin81 says:

    Thanks, James. I don’t know if it’s going anywhere, but I’m enjoying the ride.

  6. elkement says:

    Dan, your nominating me once for a blog award has boosted my blog – as the required answers motivated me to develop my genuine geeky style of blogging.

    So I would like to return the favor 😀

    I believe this is not “tag-backing” as it is a different award. But I don’t care so much about rules anyway. Feel free to bend and break them as you like, too!

  7. staceybroom says:

    I see that Elke has beaten me to it, but anyway, I’m nominating you for the Liebster Award too. Don’t feel like you have to go through the whole process. Really, the way I look at it is that it’s a way to acknowledge the efforts of other bloggers. So I nominated you because I appreciate your posts. They’re always so insightful and interesting. If you’d like to see my post about the award, here’s the link: http://fromthebroomcloset.wordpress.com/2013/05/01/liebster-blog-award/

  8. Tony says:

    Thanks for creating this blog. You bring so much comfort to those of us in the humanities with Ph.D.’s feel better. I hold a doctorate in American Studies and am currently unemployed. Your website is truly a godsend. 🙂

  9. onegrainrice says:

    Thank you for following my blog. I’m sorry about your current situation. As a Ph.D. student in Film Studies I understand the disadvantage of holding a Humanities degree in the job market. But your blog provides a healthy perspective against the odds. I’m enjoying reading your posts.

  10. David Stapleton says:

    I am recently unemployed PhD academic from the world of science and research – can you recommend any blogs in this area for me to read as I start looking for work?

    • danielmullin81 says:

      As a science PhD, you may focus on different sectors than a humanities PhD, but many of the job hunting skills are transferable. I’d start by looking at Jobs on Toast. Thanks for commenting.

  11. […] are some places online that might be helpful to those interested in leaving academia. The Unemployed Philosopher’s Blog is a good resource. So is Alternative PhD, which has a page that lists a number of others. Here […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s