Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Tenured radicals, or something

I read this book yesterday. It was a silly book. My children will write books of this caliber at the age of 6.

After the introduction, Horowitz dives right in, profiling 101 of the most "dangerous" academics in America. Here's what the dust jacket says:

"We all know that left-wing radicals from the 1960s have hung around academia and hired people like themselves. But if you thought they were all harmless, antiquated hippies, you’d be wrong. Today’s radical academics aren’t the exception—they’re legion. And far from being harmless, they spew violent anti-Americanism, preach anti-Semitism, and cheer on the killing of American soldiers and civilians—all the while collecting tax dollars and tuition fees to indoctrinate our children."

Here's the thing. There's a real debate to be had here, about freedom of speech and expression, tenure, and Ward Churchill. But this book is merely a caricature of one side of the debate: that these professors, who probably average teaching about a class a year, really are radically disconnected from American society and that their colleges graduate legions of clones each year. Horowitz's main problem with each professor seems to be that they opposed the Iraq war. Sorry--that's not radical. The people in America who take geopolitics and policy and history and blogging seriously are pretty much split about the war, and the rest of the American public changes their minds about it on a regular basis-- the same people that voted for Bill Clinton in 1996 and George W. Bush in 2000. It's 2006. Teaching women's studies, opposing the Iraq war and having Marx on your syllabus is just not that radical, and it's certainly not dangerous. (A few of the professors do seem to have pretty insane views.)

AND, there's no list or index of the professors: you can't see that Howard Zinn is on page 141, or Alison Jaggar is on page 67. I bet someone has made one, but the book doesn't have one. Horowitz could at least stand by his own list.


At 8:26 PM, Blogger Jackscolon said...

The reason there isn't a list is so the book will sell- good, right leaning citizens don't really care about the blurb (who reads a book that disjointed anyway? it's bound to be redundant- I mean, it's a list of 101 people who all believe the SAME thing), they just going to scan through and make sure their child isn't taking a class with Ward Churchill or the rest of the leftist rabble. If there was a list, they could just scan it at Barnes and Noble and put it back on the shelf. It's marketing, plain and simple, and it's prudent.

Also, just because your kids might be capable of shredding my kids worldview with shrewd, philosophical banter, doesn't mean I can't teach mine to shove them in puddles while listening to Rush Limbaugh podcasts.

At 9:22 AM, Blogger CharlesPeirce said...

I still think it's somewhat cowardly for there to be no list. How many parents can name their children's professors? 3, I think.

Whatever. There's no such thing as objective reality anyway, so what does it matter?

At 10:50 AM, Blogger Jackscolon said...

Good point. I guess I don't have a reason why it makes it less marketable, but I still think it does.

At 11:12 AM, Blogger CharlesPeirce said...

No, that was a good insight--way to think like a businessman.

At 3:58 PM, Blogger J. Morgan Caler said...

Here's to ruining marketing ploys:

Arcadia University: Warren Haffar
Ball State University: George Wolfe
Baylor University: Marc Ellis
Boston University: Howard Zinn
Brandeis University: Gordon Fellman, Dessima Williams
Brooklyn College: Priya Parmar, Timothy Shortell
Cal State University, Fresno: Sasan Fayazmanesh
California State University, Long Beach: Ron (Maulana) Karenga
City University of New York: Stanley Aronowitz, Bell Hooks, Leonard Jeffries, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick
Columbia University: Lisa Anderson, Gil Anidjar, Hamid Dabashi, Nicholas De Genova, Eric Foner, Todd Gitlin, Manning Marable, Joseph Massad, Victor Navasky
Cornell University: Matthew Evangelista
De Paul University: Norman Finkelstein, Aminah Beverly McCloud
Duke University: Miriam Cooke, Frederic Jameson
Earlham College: Caroline Higgins
Emory University: Kathleen Cleaver
Foothill College: Leighton Armitage
Georgetown University: David Cole, John Esposito, Yvonne Haddad, Mari Matsuda
Holy Cross College: Jerry Lembcke
Kent State University: Patrick Coy
Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Noam Chomsky
Metropolitan State College, Denver: Oneida Meranto
Montclair State University: Grover Furr
New York University: Derrick Bell
North Carolina State University: Gregory Dawes
Northeastern University: M. Shahid Alam, Northwestern University: Elizabeth M. Brumfiel, Bernardine Dohrn
Occidental College: Tom Hayden
Penn State University: Michael Berube, Sam Richards
Princeton University: Richard Falk
Purdue University: Harry Targ
Rochester Institute of Technology: Thomas Castellano
Rutgers University: H. Bruce Franklin, Michael Warner
Rutgers University, Stony Brook: Amiri Baraka
San Francisco State University: Anatole Anton
Saint Xavier University: Peter Kirstein
Stanford University: Joel Beinin, Paul Ehrlich
State University of New York, Binghamton: Ali al-Mazrui
State University of New York, Buffalo: James Holstun
State University of New York, Stony Brook: Michael Schwartz
Syracuse University: Greg Thomas
Temple University: Melissa Gilbert, Lewis Gordon
Texas A&M University: Joe Feagin
Truman State University: Marc Becker
University of California, Berkely: Hamid Algar, Hatem Bazian, Orville Schell
University of California, Irvine: Mark Le Vine
University of California, Los Angeles: Vinay Lal
University of California, Riverside: Armando Navarro
University of California, Santa Cruz: Bettina Aptheker, Angela Davis
University of Cincinnati: Marvin Berlowitz
University of Colorado, Boulder: Alison Jaggar, Emma Perez
University of Dayton: Mark Ensalaco
University of Denver: Dean Saitta
University of Hawaii, Manoa: Haunani-Kay Trask
University of Illinois, Chicago: Bill Ayers
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign: Robert McChesney
University of Kentucky: Ihsan Bagby
University of Michigan: Juan Cole
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor: Gayle Rubin
University of Northern Colorado: Robert Dunkley
University of Oregon, Eugene: John Bellamy Foster
University of Pennsylvania: Regina Austin, Mary Frances Berry, Michael Eric Dyson
University of Rhode Island: Michael Vocino
University of South Florida: Sami al-Arian
University of Southern California: Laurie Brand
University of Texas, Arlington: Jose Angel Gutierrez
University of Texas, Austin: Dana Cloud, Robert Jensen
University of Washington: David Barash
Villanova University: Rick Eckstein, Suzanne Toton
Western Washington University: Larry Estrada

At 5:49 PM, Blogger Jackscolon said...

I figured the entire staff of the University of Colorado (Boulder) would be included...

At 11:48 AM, Blogger Hans-Georg Gadamer said...

Grove City College: F. Stanley Keehlwetter.

Name names!

At 12:58 AM, Blogger RedHurt said...

Next I'd like a list of all the people polluting children's minds with ideas that playing halo will cause them to kill real people, because I'm going to use that list to find and kill them all.


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