Towards the end of Thursday’s televised debate, the issue of academic freedom came up. This surprised and pleased me.
I see this as an indication that the extremely serious crisis the university is going through is beginning to be understood outside its walls.
The theme also gave us the funniest moment of the night: Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois delivering the words “white niggers of America” through the mouth of someone biting into a lemon.
If you want to better understand what is happening in our universities, read the book Two Universitiesby my colleague Robert Leroux at the University of Ottawa, published by Editions du Cerf and launched on Saturday evening.
Only a professor at the top of the hierarchy could afford this book without too much personal risk.
Why this title? Because the two concepts of the university are waging an intellectual civil war.
There are those of you who cling to the classical concept of the University: we seek objective truth there, and whether we like it or not, we do not engage in politics.
If a teacher wants to do politics, let him do it outside of class.
Another concept is people who think that there is no truth, that everyone is their own, but that their truth is so important, so just, that it deserves to be applied to everyone.
Doesn’t it seem contradictory to claim that everything but one’s own perspective is relative?
Yes, and precisely because this work is of an unusually low academic standard, these men impose themselves through intimidation, censorship, infiltrating departments, and marginalizing colleagues who do not think like them.
Leroux reproduces examples of academic works that are nothing more than the promotion of ideologies and value judgments.
Described by Nathalie Heinich as “academic warriors,” these professors turned their neurotic obsessions into fields of research.
It’s worth it gender studies “, they” oil studies “, they” ethnic studies “, they” strange studies “, they” disability education ” and so on.
It is no longer learning to understand, but always defending and preaching from the premise that the people being studied are victims.
The partnership of student unions and intimidated administrations, which are increasingly full of people with degrees in these fields, gives them considerable power.
Imagine when young people who have been brainwashed for years enter the labor market.
Just look at who got the fellowship (and who didn’t), the topics of the theses, the profiles of the new teachers being hired, and many have smelled the vein that paid for the career.
Ideological fanaticism combined with self-interest then turns into a giant cocktail.
Leroux says that in the social sciences we no longer produce citizens, but less intellectuals, parrots.
Read this book. You won’t regret it.