The Kalven Report of 1967, supposedly ensuring the political neutrality of the University of Chicago

In 1967, President George Beadle of the University of Chicago (a Nobel-winning geneticist and also an avowed atheist) convened a committee whose charge was to “prepare a statement on the University’s role in social and political action.” This was the result of many people calling for the University to take positions on political issues like … Continue reading The Kalven Report of 1967, supposedly ensuring the political neutrality of the University of Chicago

Another violation of academic freedom at The University of Chicago

As I’ve written here before, the University of Chicago has several “foundational principles”. These include the famous Chicago Principles of Free Expression, promoting complete freedom of speech, which have been adopted by over sixty universities. They also include the Kalven Report, which prohibits the University, with a few rare exceptions, of taking official political, moral, or … Continue reading Another violation of academic freedom at The University of Chicago

FIRE has a chat about free speech with the University of Chicago’s incoming President

As of September 1, our estimable leader, Bob Zimmer, is retiring as President of the University of Chicago and will become Chancellor, retaining his interest in the free-speech principles that he supported so strongly over the past 15 years (I hope he’ll also keep his interest in our ducks as well!). Our new President is … Continue reading FIRE has a chat about free speech with the University of Chicago’s incoming President

Wokeness escalates at the University of Chicago: the school ignores its own “foundational principle” of not publicly espousing political or ideological views, and student activists occupy campus police headquarters

UPDATE: Professor Brian Leiter of the Law School (he’s the director of the Center for Law, Philosophy, and Human Values) added this comment to my public Facebook notice about this whole post: _________________________ I’m deeply saddened at how woke The University of Chicago is becoming. The students, of course, are far woker than the faculty, … Continue reading Wokeness escalates at the University of Chicago: the school ignores its own “foundational principle” of not publicly espousing political or ideological views, and student activists occupy campus police headquarters

U of C President clarifies and affirms University’s refusal to take official stands on political, ideological, and moral issues

For a while I’ve been dismayed by the posting of statement after woke statement on departmental websites of the University of Chicago, all espousing doctrines adhering to Critical Race Theory or the Black Lives Matter movement, and often castigating their own group for a past history of racism in a University department or school—a history … Continue reading U of C President clarifies and affirms University’s refusal to take official stands on political, ideological, and moral issues

Ben Schwarz on the University of Chicago’s new grad-school admissions policy

I’ve written several posts about the dissolution of The University of Chicago’s commitment to free expression, embodied in the Kalven Report‘s mandate that—except in exceptional circumstances involving University operation—our school should take no official stand on any issues of morality, ideology, or politics (see, for instance, here, here, and here). And up to now it … Continue reading Ben Schwarz on the University of Chicago’s new grad-school admissions policy

U. Chicago student government demands elimination of Israel, but University administration refuses to take stand on Israel/Palestine war

I’ve been at the University of Chicago for 35 years now, but never have I felt so alienated, at least politically, from the student body. As the Chicago Maroon (our student newspaper) reports, the incoming University of Chicago Undergraduate Student Government (USG) released a statement in conjunction with the blatantly anti-Semitic organization Students for Justice … Continue reading U. Chicago student government demands elimination of Israel, but University administration refuses to take stand on Israel/Palestine war

A hard case to make a good law: the ideological impurity of David Starkey

The original saying I paraphrase above, from Oliver Wendell Holmes, is “hard cases make bad law”, meaning you shouldn’t erect general principles based on extreme cases. But in this instance, regarding the defenestration of scholars who say things unpalatable to their peers, or odious things in general, these are the hard cases that should be … Continue reading A hard case to make a good law: the ideological impurity of David Starkey

University of Chicago student government refuses to retract pro-Palestinian, pro-BDS, anti-Zionist statement

Six days ago I reported that the incoming University of Chicago Undergraduate Student Government (USG) issued a statement in conjunction with the anti-Semitic organization Students for Justice in Palestine. This is an official position of the U of C’s student government (click on document to enlarge or to see it in situ). The support for … Continue reading University of Chicago student government refuses to retract pro-Palestinian, pro-BDS, anti-Zionist statement

Alan Dershowitz, in Newsweek, decries the University of Chicago’s adherence to Groupthink

Say what you will about Alan Dershowitz, but in his new piece in Newsweek (below) he’s right—and by that I mean he agrees with me. Dershowitz’s article is about the University of Chicago, and in particular the English Department’s new Statement of RightThink, along with its announcement  that grad students in the next year’s class … Continue reading Alan Dershowitz, in Newsweek, decries the University of Chicago’s adherence to Groupthink