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Author Topic: An Offensive Blog on CHE?  (Read 43726 times)
busyslinky
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« Reply #15 on: May 03, 2012, 4:18:57 PM »

The response to critics of the blogger.

http://chronicle.com/blogs/brainstorm/black-studies-part-2-a-response-to-critics/46401
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ambassadress
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« Reply #16 on: May 03, 2012, 4:29:59 PM »

I'm super-interested in the non-white birthing practices dissertation, now that I know it exists. Awesome topic because the natural birth scene really is white-woman heavy.
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busyslinky
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« Reply #17 on: May 03, 2012, 5:27:37 PM »

http://chronicle.com/blogs/brainstorm/editors-note/46423

And the editor's note: "Please join the debate."  CHE is trolling.

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fiona
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« Reply #18 on: May 03, 2012, 5:52:02 PM »

I find the blog entry loathsome, but as Voltaire would say, I would also defend to the death the right to say it--including the Chronicle's right to print it.

Freedom of the press/speech means the protection of obnoxious speech and writing. That fosters knowledge and, yes, debate.

If everyone were nice and inoffensive, we wouldn't need the First Amendment.

Those of you who want to muzzle the Chronicle or the blogger should reread the First Amendment.

The Fiona
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The Fiona or Them Fionæ or Fiona the Sublime

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larryc
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« Reply #19 on: May 03, 2012, 6:05:12 PM »

She doesn't know anything about the field but feels that she can dismiss it. White privilege, anyone?

Fiona I don't see anyone questioning the right of the CHE to publish racist dreck, only their judgement in doing so.
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forest_and_the_trees
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« Reply #20 on: May 03, 2012, 6:06:29 PM »

I don't find the blog post offensive.  I find it racist, illogical, anti-intellectual, and clueless.

I wish we would stop calling such things offensive and call them what they are.
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yellowtractor
Vice-Provost of the University of the South-East Corner of Donkeyshire (formerly Donkeyshire Polytechnic) (a Post-1992 University) and also a
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« Reply #21 on: May 03, 2012, 6:07:00 PM »

Fiona I don't see anyone questioning the right of the CHE to publish racist dreck, only their judgement in doing so.

+1 (was just about to post precisely this).
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mimzy121
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« Reply #22 on: May 03, 2012, 6:16:59 PM »

The grad students respond: http://chronicle.com/blogs/brainstorm/grad-students-respond-to-riley-post-on-african-american-studies/46421
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pocvecem
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« Reply #23 on: May 03, 2012, 6:23:25 PM »

I'm back for one post only because I wanted to comment on this topic.

The problem as I see it is not the view that NSR expressed.  There are plenty of us out there who find the theoretical presumptions of the various "Studies" disciplines indefensible.  If the blogger had dug deeper into those dissertations, she might have had plenty to criticize.  The debate over eliminating these "Studies" fields is intellectually legitimate and timely in today's budgetary environment.  NSR did not elevate the discussion to that level; that is her real misdeed, not the opinions she expressed.

The blog post points to some bigger problems.  For my part, I am annoyed to see people who should be my allies publishing work that makes views like mine look empty.  However, I see a greater problem here.  Whether you support or oppose "Studies" fields, this whole debacle points to the inability on both sides to make the debate comprehensible to a non-academic audience.  NSR engages in uninformed criticism while her opponents demand censorship or declare the inappropriateness of causing such distress to graduate students.   If this is the quality of debate at the Chronicle, there's no way anyone's doing effective non-demagogic outreach on either side

It's no wonder academe is viewed so negatively.  
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larryc
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« Reply #24 on: May 03, 2012, 6:24:00 PM »


They do not pull their punches:

Quote
One can only assume that in a bid to not be “out-n*****ed” by her right-wing cohort, Riley found some black women graduate students to beat up on.  Despite her attempts to silence us personally, and indeed the discipline as a whole, her exhortations confirm the need for the vigorous study and investigation of black life in the United States and beyond.
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marigolds
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« Reply #25 on: May 03, 2012, 6:48:48 PM »

Some of the comments are pretty awesome, too. "the inanity that libertarianism burbles out in response to racism: GUYS WE'RE ALL FREE! IF ONLY WE REMOVED ALL REDISTRIBUTIONARY ELEMENTS OF SOCIETY, WE'D BE WAY FREER! LIKE, YOU HAVE TO WANT IT!

GUYS WHY AREN'T YOU BEING FREE ALREADY?!?!"
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gekko
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« Reply #26 on: May 03, 2012, 8:23:28 PM »

Wow, this is absolutely great. I would only expand it to include nearly any field with the word studies. Does anyone really want to defend some of the nonsense that gets submitted as a "dissertation?"
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hegemony
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« Reply #27 on: May 03, 2012, 8:32:45 PM »

And Medieval Studies, too!  That notoriously easy field!  Let's disregard all the people who have the bad judgment not to be us.
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gekko
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« Reply #28 on: May 03, 2012, 9:01:12 PM »

One other point: What possible relevance could the writer's lack of a Ph.D. have? Address the aricle rather than the author. If a Harvard grad isn't qualified to even comment on the validity of a field from a journalistic standpoint, then the education system is even more incompetent than she believes. Also, I don't see any faculty members in fluff fields showing any reluctance to state an opinion on the business community despite never having started or in many cases even worked for one.
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lucero
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« Reply #29 on: May 03, 2012, 9:02:29 PM »

Her blog post was tasteless. If she has a bone to pick with African American Studies then write about it, but to single out individual grad students' dissertations and publish their names, was wrong. She probably hasn't even read those dissertations. Her argument was so mean-spirited and illogical that I can't even take it seriously. I also think it was in poor judgment of the CHE to publish it with those grad students' names especially.

And I agree with others who have stated that there are plenty of useless dissertations in other fields. Hopefully there is more to any field of study (and teaching) than just the dissertations written, which in many cases are just a hoop to jump through to get the doctorate.
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