Dalkey Archive Press director John O’Brien caused controversy this week with a difficult job posting, setting an impossible set of demands for his future employee.
In an interview with Irish Times, O’Brien explained: “The advertisement was a modest proposal. Serious and not-serious at one and the same time.” What do you think? You can compare the ad with Jonathan Swift’s “A Modest Proposal,” one of the most famous pieces of satire ever written.
The job posting included this challenging set of requirements: “Any of the following will be grounds for immediate dismissal during the probationary period: coming in late or leaving early without prior permission; being unavailable at night or on the weekends; failing to meet any goals; giving unsolicited advice about how to run things; taking personal phone calls during work hours; gossiping; misusing company property, including surfing the internet while at work; submission of poorly written materials; creating an atmosphere of complaint or argument; failing to respond to emails in a timely way; not showing an interest in other aspects of publishing beyond editorial; making repeated mistakes; violating company policies. DO NOT APPLY if you have a work history containing any of the above.”