This time it’s a chemistry course at Rice University. Here’s the poster. (The “the study of Black-Life Matter” tells you that this is purely ideological.)
AFROCHEMISTRY: The Study of Black-Life Matter (CHEM 125) is debuting this Spring ’24. In this interdisciplinary course, students will explore the intersection of racial justice and chemistry. We will approach chemistry using a historical and contemporary African American lens in order to analyze science and its impact. In addition, we will be using chemical concepts to better understand Black life in the US. As we consider not only what science is being discovered, but also ask why, how and by whom, etc., this course will empower students to consider approaches to STEM that enhance community impact. CHEM 125 is open to students from all disciplines, regardless of STEM or African American studies background (and counts towards AAAS minor). Preview the course Wednesday Nov. 8, from 7-8pm at the MCC. Reach out to Dr. Brooke Johnson [email redacted] if you have questions.
Is it even possible now to keep ideology away from science, and to refrain for coopting science to advance your own personal “progressive” principles? Although students get credit for this in the AAAS minor at Rice (African and African-American studies), could one could get science credit as well? I hope not. Regardless, it pollutes science by conflating it with “progressive” activism.
Here’s how the course violates academic principles by urging specific political action:
. . . . . this course will empower students to consider approaches to STEM that enhance community impact.
Now what, do you suppose, does that mean?
And what does it mean to “use chemical concepts to better understand Black life in the U.S.”?
On Brooke Johnson’s faculty page, which describes her as a “preceptor” in the DEI office, it says this:
Dr. Brooke Johnson joined the DEI team as a Preceptor after obtaining her Ph.D. in chemistry from Princeton University (‘23). Rice alum (‘17) and former Rice track athlete, Dr. Johnson is passionate about the intersection of science and social justice and using her unique experiences to teach, support and inspire diverse students.
I thought about making a satirical version of the poster touting either “Latinochemistry” (actually, “Latinxchemistry”) or “Judeochemistry”, but it’s not necessary. The announcement above doesn’t need satire.