Preface
XI
reinstated. How did these events affect this book?
I added §28, "Relations with other departments"; I should have
had such a section independent of Rochester. But I am neither a
participant nor a first-hand observer of the scene there. I also think
it would be a mistake to fasten on the "problem of the moment"
in mathematics. I think there are things for all of us to learn from
that situation. One, certainly, is the fragility of academic existence.
Another is that we have to nurture many aspects of our role in a uni-
versity. Some of this is discussed specifically in §28, but it is a theme
that runs throughout the book. As time goes on we'll undoubtedly
learn more.
I have profited from the comments of several colleagues who gen-
erously agreed to read earlier versions of this book. Hank Frandsen,
Wanda Giles, and Jerzy Dydak made several suggestions, some fol-
lowed, some not, but all helpful for their different points of view. My
wife, Ann, read the first draft as well as a later version. She proba-
bly helped me avoid more controversy than I wanted. I embrace and
am responsible for whatever controversy and outrageous expressions
remain.
A word about one aspect of the writing style in this book which I
believe violates some of the usual advice to authors. Often I will write
as though I were talking to another department head. (For example,
"You ought to run a tight ship.") At other times I'll write in the third
person. ("Department heads should run a tight ship.") Still other
times I'll tell you something about myself. ("I believe in running a
tight ship. But my definition of a tight ship may be different from
that of many others.") The purpose of this document is manifold. I
want to offer advice to department heads out there. I want to try to
educate the rank and file about a variety of aspects of the job of being
a department head. I also want to tell you my opinion about this job
and perhaps also a little about love, death, and the vagaries of the
human condition.
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