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The Battle Over Pronouns Coming to a College Near You

Last year, Jordan Peterson, a professor at the University of Toronto, made news when he refused to use the invented pronouns of the transgender movement as prescribed by Canadian law (see chart). Pronouns these days are a new battleground, as recommendations admonish us all that the standard English pronouns, which traditionally distinguish she from he, […]

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The Campus Left’s Mass Attack on Amy Wax and Middle Class Values

In an attempt to document “the impact of web-driven political outrage” on the lives of professors, The Chronicle of Higher Education launched a series called “Professors in the Political Cross Hairs.” Updated periodically whenever a new story unfolds of web-based attacks on professors for their classroom comments, opinion essays, tweets, or Facebook posts, The Chronicle […]

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China’s Propaganda Arm on U.S. Campuses

More than 100 U.S. colleges and universities have allowed Confucian Institutes on their campuses. These institutes, sponsored and paid for by the Chinese government, yield a good deal of sway to  China over the curriculum and hiring of teachers, sometimes outsourcing control. As a result, several universities, including the University of Chicago, have closed their […]

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The University as Nursery

One of the implications of the shift of pressure against free speech from left-wing faculty and administrators to undergraduates is that the ideological framework of liberal bias doesn’t quite apply.  Yes, we have language of “racism” and “sexism,” along with demands that relics of US history that fail the PC test be torn down.  But […]

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No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

Mary Spellman,  dean of students at Claremont McKenna College in California,  resigned under pressure after  sending a gracious note to a troubled minority student. A student demonstration argued that  Spellman’s comforting message was in effect a way of saying that minorities didn’t belong at the school. Charlotte Allen has the story at her blog, Stupid Girl […]

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Cornell’s Not Even Hiding Its Bias Anymore

A few highlights from the online site of Cornell University’s conservative student newspaper, the Cornell Review: At her inauguration as Cornell’s new president, Elizabeth Garrett said, “We must heed the call to be radical and progressive.” Later she issued apparently contradictory statements on free speech, calling herself “an avid supporter of freedom of speech” at a […]

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A One-Sided Law Meeting

In the week that a new organization, Heterodox Academy, was established to press for more ideological diversity in academic life, the learned association in my own profession showed how much it is needed. The Association of American Law Schools (AALS) sent around a notice of its prospective annual meeting, highlighting its most prominent speakers. Of the […]

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Expel 10 If One or Two Are Guilty of Rape?

At a House oversight hearing last week, Representative Jared Polis (D-Colorado) seemed deeply troubled by two arguments raised by FIRE’s Joseph Cohn: that trained police, rather than campus bureaucrats, are better equipped to investigate felony offenses; and that the current campus tribunals deny meaningful due process for students accused of sexual assault. In response, Polis […]

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Animal House

Wesleyan Finishes off Its Frats

And then there were none. In early August Psi Upsilon, the sole remaining residential fraternity house at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut, was suspended for the 2015-2016 academic year over an investigation by law enforcement over alleged illegal drug activity inside its house. Until the fall of 2014, there were three fraternity houses at Wesleyan, […]

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Academic Work May Not Be Worth Your Time or Effort

This is an excerpt from a September 8 article published by Vox, “I Have One of the Best Jobs in Academia. Here’s Why I’m Walking Away.” Despite all the finger-pointing directed at students (“They’re lazy! They’re oversensitive! They’re entitled!”), and the blame heaped on professors (“Out of touch and irrelevant to a man”), the real […]

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Why STEM ‘Diversity’? Just Because

Most reports, studies, proposals, etc., calling for more “diversity” — whether of faculties, students, coaches, whatever — either fail to provide any justification for the discrimination necessary to increase it or fall flat, sometimes fatuously, when they do attempt to provide a justification. In reviewing a typical one, for example, MIT’s Report on The Initiative […]

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ARE SCOTT WALKER’S UNIVERSITY BUDGET CUTS A WIN FOR STUDENTS?

Should college professors teach more? Specifically, should professors at public research universities devote more time to teaching undergraduates, and less to research? In two states this, um, academic question has become a political controversy, one likely to crop up elsewhere. Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, a Republican presidential candidate, has proposed a tuition freeze and […]

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College Students Now–the Good and the Bad

First, the good news:  My undergraduate students here at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, are quite literate, contrary to all the bad press and fears. Every week I give them a 20-minute writing assignment in class, the sole preparation for which is having done the week’s homework.  Turns out they write pretty well; arguably, in […]

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Princeton Takes a Stand on Free Speech

“Our university campuses are now islands of oppression in a sea of freedom.”—Abigail Thernstrom, 1990 So say many critics of our colleges, and, alas, in many cases correctly.  Here are the hallmarks of today’s college campus: The implementation of hate speech codes The stultifying strictures of political correctness The greatly expanded notions of verbal harassment […]

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