gender

Is “Gender Balance” the New Quota System?

The Chronicle of Higher Education fretted recently about the lack of “gender balance” among college presidents. Women have achieved “gender parity” in the Ivy League, but “the Ivy League, with its eight institutions, is an outlier. Overall in higher education, the share of women presidents has barely budged, remaining at about 25 percent over the […]

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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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Politics and the Race/Class/Gender Trinity

My City University of New York colleague David Gordon has penned a convincing analysis about the current state of history in higher education. I share, and fully endorse, his critique about the direction of the field, with the vise-grip of the race/class/gender trinity “distort[ing] historical enquiry.” Stressing above all else victimization and oppression poorly serves […]

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The Mangling of American History

The evolution of the historical profession in the United States in the last fifty years provides much reason for celebration.  It provides even more reason for unhappiness and dread.  Never before has the profession seemed so intellectually vibrant.  An unprecedented amount of scholarship and teaching is being devoted to regions outside of the traditional American […]

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Wendy Murphy Comes to the University of Virginia

The Office of Civil Rights’ mandated procedures for investigating sexual assault are tilted heavily against the accused party. The institution can hire “neutral fact-finders” who produce the equivalent of a grand jury presentment, deny the accused an advisor of his choice, add witnesses that the accused student does not request, forbid the students from cross-examining […]

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Title IX: Not About Discrimination

Imagine a hypothetical gourmet grocery store chain — let’s call it Wholly Wholesome Foods — that serves haute cuisine specialties at sushi/deli/lunch counters only in its stores located in upscale neighborhoods. Now imagine the long zealous arm of federal, state, and local enforcers accusing WhoWhoFoo of discriminating against inner city residents and forcing it to […]

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An Unusually Stupid Court Ruling

Yesterday the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit held that Michigan’s Proposal 2 violates the U.S. Constitution’s Equal Protection Clause.  Proposal 2 was a ballot initiative that amended the state constitution to provide that state and local government agencies (including public universities) in Michigan “shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment […]

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Don’t Judge a Book by Its Cover, But…

You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, or its title, but how about from an extended interview with the authors? On November 2, Inside Higher Ed carried such an interview with the three authors of a new book entitled Occupying the Academy. The authors, Christine Clark (a professor of multicultural education at UNLV), Kenneth […]

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How the Colleges Skew U.S. History

American history has been radically transformed on our campuses. Traditional topics are now not only marginalized but “re-visioned” to become more compatible with the dominant race/class/gender paradigm. In two posts last fall, I took a look at U.S. history offerings at Bowdoin College. The liberal arts college, one of the nation’s finest, long enjoyed a reputation as a training […]

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A ‘Magisterial’ Work on Affirmative Action

“Mend it, don’t end it” was the famous advice on affirmative action from Bill Clinton, who did neither. There are, of course, other useful slogans, such as “Muddle it,” which the Supreme Court essentially did in the 2003 Gratz and Grutter cases. The Court held that the University of Michigan could not give a fixed […]

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Look What they’ve Done to U.S. History

If you doubt that leftist activists now dominate the study and teaching of U.S. history, take a look at the program for the 2013 American Historical Association conference in New Orleans. The pattern  is similar to the University of Michigan’s history department, discussed here yesterday—a heavy emphasis on race, class, and gender, with more “traditional” […]

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In History—the Obsession with Race, Class and Gender

The University of Michigan history department has 28 tenured or tenure-track professors whose research specialties in some way relate to U.S. history after 1789. Race is the favorite topic; at least eleven of the department’s professors indicate that their research in some way deals with race in America. Gender is the next prominent area of […]

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Shirley Tilghman Leaving Princeton

Shirley Tilghman, who has just announced that she will step down as president of Princeton at the end of the academic year,  was chosen as the successor to former president Harold Shapiro in part because the powers that be thought it about time that the university had a female in that office.  She was the […]

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The Wacky World of Victim Studies

Bruce Bawer’s new book, The Victims’ Revolution:  the Rise of Identity Studies and the Closing of the Liberal Mind, arrived on the front page of the “Back to School” issue of the New York Times Book Review.  Any author of a book on higher education would have to be delighted to be awarded such prominence.  The review itself, […]

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Why Are There Still Preferences for Women?

Using federal statistics, Laura Norén has prepared a series of graphics showing gender distribution among recent recipients of undergraduate, M.A., and Ph.D./professional degrees. The charts are visually striking, especially since all three sets of charts show movement in an identical direction. According to Norén, by 2020, women are projected to earn 61 percent of all […]

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“Diversity” and the Gender Gap in Economics

Both Inside Higher Ed and the Chronicle of Higher Education have articles this morning about a new survey of Economics PhDs that finds a dramatic gender gap on policy questions.  Among the findings, women economists are: 20% more likely than men to disagree with the notion that the United States has too much government regulation; […]

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Thirty Million for Race and Gender Hires at Columbia

In 2005, amidst the Harvard faculty’s ultimately successful effort to purge President Larry Summers, Columbia president Lee Bollinger announced that his university would launch its own “diversity” hiring initiative. Bollinger committed $15 million to “add between 15 and 20 outstanding women and minority scholars to the Faculty of Arts and Sciences over the next three […]

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In Hard Times, Diversity Bureaucracies Do Well

By Duke Cheston Originally Posted from the Pope Center for Higher Education Policy About a year and a half ago, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro attempted to hire a new chief diversity officer. The university sought an administrator who would focus on increasing appreciation for racial differences on campus–even though UNCG already had […]

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Gender Quotas on Philosophy Panels?

First it was gender quotas for the sciences–and now it’s gender quotas for philosophy. Two philosophy professors are calling on their colleagues to boycott academic conferences that don’t feature at least one woman as a keynote speaker.

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Nora Ephron’s Commencement Talk at Wellesley, 1996

President Walsh, trustees, faculty, friends, noble parents…and dear class of 1996, I am so proud of you. Thank you for asking me to speak to you today. I had a wonderful time trying to imagine who had been ahead of me on the list and had said no; I was positive you’d have to have […]

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Prominent Gender Historians Circle the Wagons

A few weeks ago, the Sunday New York Times published a review of Alice Kessler-Harris’ new biography of the writer and political activist Lillian Hellman. (Outside of the academy, Kessler-Harris is perhaps best-known for testifying against Sears and on behalf of the EEOC in a famous gender-discrimination case.) Written by Donna Rifkind, a regular Times […]

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Oppositional Gay Culture and the Future of Marriage

These are banner days for the gay-rights movement. “Banner Days” is in fact the front page headline in The New York Times Book Review for a review of Linda Hirshman’s new book, Victory: The Triumphant Gay Revolution. The reviewer, Rich Benjamin, praises Hirshman’s work but feels the need to chasten her on the extent of […]

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$301,000 to Study Gender in Political Ambition?

On May 25th, the House of Representatives passed what is called the Flake Amendment, which prohibits the National Science Foundation from funding projects in political science. Here are Congressman Jeff Flake’s words on the House floor from May 9th: “Let me simply say I can think of few finer examples to cut than the National […]

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Affirmative Action, the Bishops and Women’s Colleges

Here’s something to think about when debating the position of the Catholic bishops on religious liberty and contraception: all-women colleges are allowed under Federal law to discriminate against men in admissions, at least on the undergraduate level. Because they are private, these colleges are free under the law to design their mission (the education of […]

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A Controversy at Post-Catholic Georgetown

Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services, is scheduled to speak Friday at a Georgetown University commencement event, setting off protests among Catholics and others who believe the Obamacare mandate violates religious liberty. So far, some 25,000 people have signed petitions asking for the invitation to be withdrawn. On campus, the reaction seems more […]

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