The Future of Academic Freedom

Overview


At the bottom of every controversy embroiling the university today?from debates over hate-speech codes to the reorganization of the academy as a multicultural institution?is the concept of academic freedom. But academic freedom is almost never mentioned in these debates. Now nine leading academics, including Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Edward Said, Richard Rorty, and Joan W. Scott, consider the problems confronting the American University in terms of their effect on the future of ...
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Overview


At the bottom of every controversy embroiling the university today—from debates over hate-speech codes to the reorganization of the academy as a multicultural institution—is the concept of academic freedom. But academic freedom is almost never mentioned in these debates. Now nine leading academics, including Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Edward Said, Richard Rorty, and Joan W. Scott, consider the problems confronting the American University in terms of their effect on the future of academic freedom.

"Louis Menand has assembled The Future of Academic Freedom to better define and delineate what should and should not happen within our colleges and universities. . . . The whole extremely learned yet accessible debate exploits the freedoms it extols, tackling sensitive subjects such as ethnicity and ethics head-on."—Publishers Weekly

"The essays are not only sharp, elegant and lucid, but extremely well-informed about the history of American battles over academic freedom."—Alan Ryan, Times Higher Education Supplement

"[A] superb inquiry into some of the most vexing and significant issues in higher education today."—Zachary Karabell, Boston Book Review

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Editorial Reviews

Virginia Quarterly Review
Brilliant opposing arguments about the philosophical presuppositions of academic freedom.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
One of the main contenders for New York's "public intellectual" throne, which was left vacant by the likes of Lionel Trilling, City University of New York professor and contributing editor of the New York Review of Books Louis Menand has assembled The Future of Academic Freedom to better define and delineate what should and should not happen within our colleges and universities. Internal debates erupt among the nine essayists: Richard Rorty and Thomas Haskell argue about philosophy; Cass Sunstein and Harvard's Henry Louis Gates Jr. take the debate back to the campus, to what actually gets said inside and outside the classroom. Essays by Edward Said and Menand himself take differing but complementary stands on curriculum. The whole extremely learned yet accessible debate exploits the freedoms it extols, tackling sensitive subjects such as ethnicity and ethics head-on. Univ. of Chicago, $24.95, 240p ISBN 0-226-52004-8
Zachary Karabell
[A]n extraordinary compilation on the issue of how wide the net of academic freedom should be cast...[The book is] rich in argument and detail...nuanced and sophisticated.
Boston Book Review
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226520056
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 12/15/1998
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 239
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Table of Contents


Foreword by Linda Ray Pratt
1: The Limits of Academic Freedom
Louis Menand
2: Does Academic Freedom Have Philosophical Presuppositions?
Richard Rorty
3: Justifying the Rights of Academic Freedom in the Era of "Power/Knowledge"
Thomas L. Haskell
4: Academic Freedom and Law: Liberalism, Speech Codes, and Related Problems
Cass R. Sunstein
5: Critical Race Theory and Freedom of Speech
Henry Louis Gates, Jr
6: Academic Freedom as an Ethical Practice
Joan W. Scott
7: We Need a New Interpretation of Academic Freedom
Ronald Dworkin
8: Science and Its Critics
Evelyn Fox Keller
9: Identity, Authority, and Freedom: The Potentate and the Traveler
Edward W. Said
Contributors
Index
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