Many people are drawn to teaching and research because they seek to understand aspects of their own lives and / or make a difference in social arenas that matter to them on a personal level. Countless graduate students, teachers, professors, and researchers note that their own life experience directly or indirectly influenced their decisions about what to study, what methods to use, what or where to teach or do research, which topics mattered most, and many other aspects of teaching and research careers. Unfortunately, many within and beyond the academy encourage erasure of these standpoints and motivations in the name of supposedly objective teaching and research norms embedded within academic traditions.
Despite efforts to create, promote, justify, and enforce supposed objectivity, teaching and research today generally includes wrestling with many issues – such as racism, classism, sexism, cisssexism, heterosexism, ableism, nationalism, ageism, and inequalities based on religion, mental and physical health, traumatic experience, and other phenomena – that resonate with people in deeply personal ways. Rather than supposed objectivity, teachers and researchers in critical pedagogical, theoretical, and methodological traditions have long noted the importance of owning one’s location in the world and making sense of the ways such locations influence intellectual endeavors in subtle and explicit ways.
By creating this site, we hope to provide a space for teachers and researchers doing deeply personal work and / or confronting emotional encounters related to the subjects they study to share their insights and experiences with others. To this end, we will provide stories from teachers and researchers that highlight the personal and emotional aspects of scholarly practice as well as informative posts geared toward providing resources and building community around teachers and researchers brave enough to write where it hurts in hopes of one day witnessing a better world for themselves and others. Write where it hurts is an inclusive space for all standpoints, and thus we are committed to egalitarian and multi-perspective communication, dialogue, and conversation wherein all voices have the same value and opportunity in this web community.