ideology

Iowa and the Groupthink Academy

That certain quarters of the academy–humanities departments, most social sciences departments, and many graduate programs (social work, education, and to a lesser extent law)–are ideologically imbalanced is not news. A decision in an Iowa court, however, exposed the difficulty in addressing the problem. The case, which received extensive coverage in the Des Moines Register and […]

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Tenured Incognizance

A small controversy surfaced last week at University of Central Florida when a psychology professor sent an email to all his students to berate some of them for “religious bigotry.”  According to the professor’s letter, some Christian students in class that evening claimed that their faith is “the most valid religion,” thereby “demonstrating to the […]

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University of California’s Politicization is Out of Control

KC Johnson drew our attention to an extraordinary development at UCLA, where the faculty senate of a major campus is now on record approving use of a class to promote an instructor’s personal political agenda. The practice itself is not new, but to date objections have been met either with obfuscation or outright denial.             The […]

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College Insurrection

Today Professor William Jacobson (of Legal Insurrection fame) launched College Insurrection, a new website devoted to higher education. The site, according to Professor Jacobson, will help “conservative/libertarian students…find out what is going on with like-minded students on other campuses, and understand that they are the many, not the few, no matter what they are told.”  […]

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UCLA: Still Obsessed with Diversity

What is it with universities in California? Financially strapped, troubled by protesters making impossible demands, and worried about the declining value of their academic programs, many of the state’s great universities decide to…redouble their commitment to a fast-fading political ideology. The latest example is the impending vote by the faculty of UCLA’s College of Letters […]

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In Praise of Ideological Openness

Many people, some conservatives included, say we need to get ideology out of the college classroom. Some professors say proudly, “my students never come to know where I stand.”   I practice an opposite approach. I tell students that I am a free-market economist, a classical liberal or libertarian.  And I am not suggesting that […]

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The Safe and Secure Professoriate

Here is what Andrew Hacker, co-author of Higher Education? How Colleges Are Wasting Our Money and Failing Our Kids and What We Can Do About It , says about tenure in a recent interview in Atlantic Monthly: Here’s what happens. Academics typically don’t get tenured until the age of 40. This means that from their […]

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Another Argument against Liberal Bias

Every ideology has its factual holes. The press of ideas and values highlights certain facts and obscures others, and when the ideology grows in force in local settings, those obscured facts disappear entirely, or even turn into outright falsehoods in the eyes of the “ideologues.” George Mason economics professor Daniel Klein and Zogby International researcher […]

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Decoding Teacher Training

Thanks to the efforts of the American Council of Trustees and Alumni and the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education—and a rare, if welcome, instance of Congress standing up for students’ rights in higher education—the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) abandoned its de facto “social justice” criterion. Yet while the development made […]

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Three Groupthink Conferences—No Dissenters Please

Several years ago, in a seminal Chronicle of Higher Education essay, Mark Bauerlein lamented a campus in which “the simple trappings of deliberation make academics think that they’ve reached an opinion through reasoned debate—instead of, in part, through an irrational social dynamic. The opinion takes on the status of a norm. Extreme views appear to […]

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Why I Left Academia

By Anonymous In March 2008 I reluctantly made the decision to leave academia. After six years in graduate school and three years as a professor, it was clear to me that the discrimination I faced was so pervasive that there would be no escaping it in the years ahead. Don’t misunderstand what I write in […]

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More Diversity Nonsense

If you still think the diversity ideology isn’t corrupting the universities, consider these two items from Canada: – Carleton University in Ottawa is dropping cystic fibrosis as the beneficiary of its annual fundraiser because the disease isn’t diverse enough—most of the people who suffer from it are believed to be white males. – Queens University […]

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Ideology In The Classroom

Closed Minds? Politics and Ideology in American Universities, published in September to little fanfare, has caught on amid its intended audience: those who believe indoctrination of students is a figment of the conservative imagination and not really a factor on our campuses. The New York Times, calling indoctrination “an article of faith” among conservative critics […]

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The Long Shadow Of The Sixties

In every discussion of left-wing bias on college campuses, a good portion of faculty defenders come to the table with a blunt contention. There is NO bias, they insist. Sure, most humanities and social science faculty register Democrat, but it doesn’t much affect teaching, and besides, campuses have their fair share of conservatism and libertarianism […]

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Want to Teach Here? Then Tell Us Your Politics

It’s hard to say just when universities ceased to believe that education was a worthwhile mission. But that they have done so is beyond question. Among many signs of this reality is the anxiety to redefine the university’s task. After all, educators who no longer expect or demand serious intellectual effort from their students are […]

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What Does ‘Sustainability’ Have to Do With Student Loans?

The student loan crisis – or near crisis; narrowly-averted crisis ; or postponed crisis – no one is sure – comes co-incidentally at a moment when many colleges and universities are once again repackaging their basic programs. The new buzzword, as John Leo has pointed out is “sustainability.” I also recently tried my hand at […]

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The Ideological Fog Of The Modern University

Don’t miss Peter Wood’s remarkable speech on the crisis in the universities, delivered April 19 to the National Association of Scholars affiliate in Minnesota. The speech is featured above in commentary. Wood, NAS executive director, neatly encapsulates the crisis in a single sentence, discussing “how higher education one ordered by a small number of abiding […]

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Indoctrinate U At The Manhattan Institute

Last night the Manhattan Institute sponsored a screening of Evan Coyne Maloney’s brilliant documentary, Indoctrinate U. Some 400-500 people attended, laughing in all the right places. (It’s hard to explain why a film about campus repression is so funny, but it is.) Not one campus administrator (on or off camera) even tries to answer any […]

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Indoctrinate U Screening

The Moving Picture Institute and MindingTheCampus.com invite you to a public screening of Indoctrinate U on Monday April 14, 2008 from 6:00-8:00 PM. The screening will be held at the Directors Guild of America Theater and will be followed by a discussion featuring MindingTheCampus.com editor John Leo and David DesRosiers, executive director of the VERITAS […]

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Soft Bias Against The Right

In recent years, conservative critics of academia have had few better friends than Ward Churchill, the Group of 88, MIT biology professor Nancy Hopkins (who fled Larry Summers talk about variations in intelligence between genders), and a few other hot-headed leftists on campus who made headlines. They proved the point about ideological bias every time […]

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Where Are The News Media?

Stuart Taylor’s brilliant rant in this week’s National Journal (“Academia’s Pervasive PC Rot”) says “the cancerous spread of ideologically eccentric, intellectually shoddy, phony-diversity-obsessed fanaticism among university faculties and administrators is far, far worse and more inexorable than most alumni, parents, and trustees suspect.” There’s an obvious explanation of why so many university watchers don’t seem […]

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Professors: Just As Liberal, Or More Moderate?

The Chronicle of Higher Education, the voice of liberal academia, says that an important new study shows that liberal dominance among professors is much less than commonly believed. Not really. The study, by sociologists Neil Gross of Harvard and Solon Simmons of George Mason University, found that in 2004, 78 percent of faculty voted for […]

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The Humanities: A Laughing Stock?

An excerpt from the new book Education’s End, Why Our Colleges and Universities Have Given Up on the Meaning of Life by Anthony T. Kronman, Sterling Professor of Law, Yale Law School (Yale University Press) By the early 1970s, the humanities were floundering. Ideological rifts were widening. Traditional ways of teaching had lost much of […]

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Regents Asleep At The Switch

By Anne Neal Question: What happens when you take a world-class public university, let political correctness run amok, and give it regents who are asleep at the switch? Answer: You get the University of California. Over the last week, UC faculty, administrators and regents have illustrated, in gory and public detail, a principle one would […]

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Praising Discomfort at Middlebury

Stop the presses. The president of a well-known college has actually come out for diversity of ideas, rather than just the narrow form of diversity prized on campus (skin color, gender, sexual orientation). In a baccalaureate address at Middlebury College’s graduation, President Ronald D. Liebowitz talked about the “value of discomfort” in listening to and […]

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