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David Noble, Critic of Distance Education, Dies at 65

David F. Noble, a prominent critic of the corporatization of academe and of distance education, died on Monday evening of natural causes, the Toronto Globe and Mail reports. He was 65.

Mr. Noble taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and later at York University in Toronto, where he became known for his political activism.

In 2001 he was denied an appointment at Vancouver’s Simon Fraser University despite faculty backing, a denial he blamed on his activism. Six years later he settled out of court with the university.

According to the Globe and Mail, Mr. Noble, a Jew and an anti-Zionist, angered York University administrators in 2004 when he accused fund raisers there of being “biased by the presence and influence of staunch pro-Israeli lobbyists, activities, and fund-raising agencies.” He sued for defamation after the university condemned his actions, and the case was scheduled to go to trial next year.

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