Thursday, May 24, 2007

Who Are the Clarifiers?

Public attention about the behavior of Duke faculty activists had two turning points. The first came on December 15, when—for what appears to be the first time in American history—the statements and actions of their own professors were cited as grounds for why college students could not receive a fair trial locally. The second came in the so-called “clarifying” statement, issued by 87 Duke faculty members in mid-January.

The statement, which purported to “clarify” the Group of 88’s ad, formed the first leg of the ill-fated Group of 88 rehab tour. The defiant refusal to apologize and the professors’ inability to explain the guilt-presuming statements from the original ad (something “happened” to Crystal Mangum; “to the protesters making collective noise, thank you for not waiting”) generated national attention. Drudge (16 million daily hits) linked to the statement itself; within days, Dan Abrams, John Podhoretz, Mary Laney, and Charlotte Allen had condemned the statement on television or in widely circulated newspapers and magazines.

The statement attracted big names among anti-lacrosse extremists: Anne Allison; Bill Chafe; Kim Curtis; Grant Farred; Karla Holloway; Wahneema Lubiano; Paula McClain; Mark Anthony Neal; Alex Rosenberg. But some Group members, such as Houston Baker, had left Duke by the time the new statement appeared; a select few, such as Arlie Petters, declined to sign the new statement. A total of 28 original signatories did not endorse the clarifying statement.

Perhaps the most inexplicable element of the faculty’s response to this entire case came in the decision of 27 members of the Duke faculty who had the good sense or fortune not to sign onto the Group of 88’s statement to affiliate with the Group’s cause long after it had been discredited.

Who were these newly “clarifying” faculty, and why did they act?

A handful were powerful figures on campus who fall into the Chafe/Lubiano/Allison ideological axis. Take, for instance, Kerry Haynie, co-Director of Duke’s Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity, and Gender in the Social Sciences. He joined Chafe in a late-February apologia, demanding that Duke “move forward” without addressing the faculty’s response to the lacrosse case, and affirming his belief “students and faculty alike should pledge to uphold a code of mutual respect and of caring about each other.

When asked why he signed the “clarifying” statement, Haynie’s reply, en toto, was, “Get a freaking life! Quote me!”

A half-hour later, he e-mailed back, writing, “Please don’t send me any additional stupid emails on this topic.”

Some people might wonder how Haynie considered himself a figure who could lecture others on the need for “mutual respect.”

Other prominent figures among the newly “clarifying” faculty:

  • Charlie Piot is chair of the African-American Studies program. At a February forum, he demanded that the Group’s critics “shut up,” and, in one of my favorite lines of the case, suggested that this blog imitates the propaganda practices of unnamed African dictators.
  • Robyn Wiegman is Margaret Taylor Smith Director of Women’s Studies and Professor, Women’s Studies and Literature. Last fall, when Steve Baldwin became the first Duke professor to criticize the Group of 88, Wiegman wildly attempted to tar him with the brush of racism.
  • Kenneth Surin replaced Karla Holloway on the Academic Council and confided to Diverse that athletes did not enroll in his courses: “I do not give quizzes . . . I give very hard reading.” He told me that he signed the “clarifying” statement and would have, if asked, signed the Group of 88’s statement because “Duke did not ask the lacrosse team to have a party with under-aged drinking in March 2006. Duke did not ask the lacrosse team to hire strippers at that party. Duke did not ask the lacrosse team to impersonate another Duke sports team [sic] when hiring the strippers. Duke did not ask the lacrosse team to shout racial slurs [sic] at the strippers that night (vouched for by neighbors [sic], no one on the team has denied this). Duke did not ask a member of the lacrosse team to send an inflammatory email later that night (the subsequent excuse is that this email was a ‘parody’, but in the circumstances sending it was not the best thing to do). Duke did not ask the lacrosse team to acquire a significant track record of alcohol-abuse and public-disorder convictions (1/3rd of the team since 2000). Duke did not ask one of the three accused members of the lacrosse team to acquire recently a gay-bashing conviction [sic] in DC. Duke did not ask the lacrosse team to become notorious for its unruly and antisocial behavior in the Edens Quad on campus and the Trinity Park and Trinity Heights neighborhoods off campus (I know first-hand, having lived in the latter neighborhood from 1993-2005) . . . In no way can condemnation of this persistent pattern of lacrosse team misbehavior be a problem for any ethically upright member of the community.”

How this explanation corresponds to the current excuse for the Group of 88’s statement (the ad had nothing to do with the lacrosse case; signatories were merely expressing support for unnamed black students on campus) Surin did not say.

Several other “clarifying” faculty (Erin Gayton, Erik Harms, Fred Klaits, Tamera Marko, Kristin Solli) were instructors in the University Writing Program—which isn’t exactly a hotbed of mainstream thought. Harms, for instance, teaches a course called “URBANcultureSPACEtimePOWER” (all one word), which explores such questions as, “Why are there no supermarkets in some neighborhoods, only liquor-stores? . . . Who gets ‘a view’ and who is put under surveillance?” Klaits teaches a course asking, “Why Have Wealth?”; Solli’s offering critiques “The World According to America.” Marko’s class explores how “cell phones to cybersex to 'designer babies'” to other technologies are “produced, marketed and consumed in terms of [naturally] race, class, gender, sexuality, labor, family and nationality.” All five did not respond to two requests asking why they signed the January statement.

Of the remaining 17 non-Group members who signed onto the “clarifying” statement, only two have publicly articulated their rationales. They, and the other 15, all did not respond to two e-mails from me asking about the statement; the Chronicle, too, found these professors unwilling to explain their actions. Many, however, had the expected (Jehanne Gheith; Robert Korstad; Sean Metzger; Stephanie Sieburth; John Transue; Kathryn Whetten; Tomiko Yoda) race/class/gender worldviews. Covering just about all the bases, Metzger, for instance, lists “performance and queer theory; race, migration and sexuality . . . [and] the intersections of gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity and national belonging as constructed through film, theatre and performance” as his intellectual approach.

Finally—and remarkably—the “clarifying” statement attracted a handful of signatures from either prestigious professors in the humanities (Maureen Quilligan, Helen Solterer) or faculty in computer science (Jeffrey Forbes); the natural sciences (Joshua Socolar, Roxanne Springer); and engineering (William Reichert). Of the six, only Forbes responded to e-mail requests from me asking about their reasoning for signing the statement. Forbes wrote back to say he would have no comment.

The statement to which the above figures affixed their signatures was highly problematic. To take just two examples: (1) the Group of 88’s ad claims the endorsement of five Duke departments and more than a dozen academic programs at the school. Yet no evidence exists how any of these departments endorsed the ad--and, indeed, it appears that none of the departments actually did endorse the ad. Why, then, did the clarifiers not repudiate this aspect of the Group of 88’s handiwork?

(2) The clarifiers quoted the Group of 88—“The ad thanked ‘the students speaking individually and . . . the protesters making collective noise’”—but cut off the next five words: “thank you for not waiting.” Why did the clarifiers consider it so important not to pass along the Group’s decision to praise people for not waiting before speaking out last March and April? Indeed, the academy usually advocates gathering all evidence before speaking out, not praising those who rush to judgment based solely on evidence presented by one side.

But with clarifiers such as Haynie lecturing colleagues on how to behave, perhaps such questions are irrelevant at Duke.

63 comments:

Anonymous said...

JLS says....,

The question of why those untainted by the first ad jumped about is really an interesting question. One would guess that the peer pressure among the faculty at Duke caused other faculty members to jump on a sinking ship? That is powerful peer pressure.

Of course Brodhead or the Duke trustees failing to say anything about original ad or failing to suggest the faculty not criticize students, also made it easier to sign on to the "clarrifying" statement.

rrhamilton said...

One of the all-time best postings by KC. I'm still reading, but I have the answer for this question, which KC quotes from one of the 88er-wannabes: “Why are there no supermarkets in [black] neighborhoods, only liquor-stores?"

Having lived in a black neighborhood, I can tell you why there are no supermarkets: Fear of crime. The older black people from the neighborhood I lived in would drive to the nearby all-white neighborhood to go to the grocery store. They were too terrified of crime to carry cash to (or even purchases from) supermarkets in their own neighborhoods.

When I first went to Washington DC (stationed there in the Army), I wondered why the black paperboys used shopping-carts to on their routes instead of bicycles, as I had seen white boys use all my life. Clearly anyone could afford a $10 bicycle (this was in the 1970s), so why slow yourself down pushing a cart? After I had been in DC for awhile, the answer became clear: Because of black crime, any newsboy riding a bike, wouldn't be riding it for long.

Anonymous said...

It looks like we have a "Gang of 115".

Anonymous said...

Carolyn says:

Face it. The Gang of 88 are a bunch of idiots that got caught being idiots - and are now too dumb to fix the mess. And even if you told them how, they still wouldn't fix it because, in addition to being stupid, they're also cowards.

You know, I really don't like those guys.

Anonymous said...

More embarrassment for Duke. Do the trustees think the public won't notice the caliber of professors on Duke's payroll?

Gary Packwood said...

KC Asked?
...Who were these newly “clarifying” faculty, and why did they act?
::
I would venture a guess that the Duke administration asked them to lend a hand in helping everyone bring the academy back to that place which "advocates gathering all evidence before speaking out, not praising those who rush to judgment based solely on evidence presented by one side."

It didn't work.

I'm guessing that the majority of the faculty is intimidated in a way that is similar to the residents of those high rise apartment buildings in NYC years ago who refused to dial 911 even when they were aware that terrible crimes were being committed in front of their building.

Fear.

So many of the G88 are relatively new to Duke and the established faculty are not at all certain that they understand fully what these new people and departments are going to do next or more importantly...who they are going to do it to.

The established faculty and departments must feel secure in the knowledge that senior administrators are interested in everyone in the academy and not just these new loud professors and departments...who talk continually about problems with no solutions.

If they are not secure in that knowledge they will behave just like those residents in NYC who could not make that commitment to dial 911.

Can President Broadhead bring these groups together? I can't imagine that the established faculty and departments are even listening to him anymore.
::
GP

Insufficiently Sensitive said...

Being hopelessly old and with mores molded in the 1950s, I can cheerfully declare the faculty 'activists' in G88 (and their recent recruits) to be a nest of snakes operating in the dark.

One lovely aspect of DIW is that it has lifted their cover and exposed them all in a knot at the bottom of the manhole, writhing and hissing, refusing all questions and making distinctly un-professorial noises in the direction of their critics. They refuse to defend their scurrilous behavior - has any of them even defended a thesis?

About time for some serious defunding.

Anonymous said...

I hope this information and much more about the 88 appear in your book. It's a perplexing and worrisome group of people.

The past and continuing actions of these faculty members with race-sex-class agendas that permeate all that they do at the university should serve as a warning to the many other universities and colleges that seem to have a need to have a large number of politically correct hires and course offerings, with little regard to standards.

No one stands up to the 88 types for fear of victimizing them, for fear of being called racist or sexist. (Wiegman of Women's Studies went on the attack, falsely accusing another professor of making a racist comment).

In the past, I think, many other professors considered them jokes. No more. These agenda-driven faculty have made themselves political forces on campuses around the country. Look how delicately Brodhead and Burness treated the 88 during the hoax, in contrast to their treatment of the lacrosse players. The rest of the faculty took note.

Daniel said...

My friend on EbonyFriends.com and I really hope this information and much more about the 88 appear in your post, we will wait for it.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with rrhamilton that this is one of your "all-time best postings," KC. I hope to read it again in your book.

While much has been written about the facts and legal aspects of this case, the actions of this group of faux-academics and their obvious dominance of the voices emitting from Duke is a serious national problem in academic institutions everywhere.

Not every university town has a Nifong or a Durham PD; only a few could possibly have a newspaper as pathetic as the Herald-Sun; but most all have these ridiculous "Anger Studies Departments" dominated by a cast of bad actors like the Group of 88 et al.

At Duke they are a cancer in the throat of a University that, when it had the opportunity to speak and heal a very volatile situation, could not.

With the exception of a brave few --- Professor Coleman, Coach Kimel, and Professor Baldwin, why has there not been a response from what surely must be a majority of fair-minded professors at Duke? This very disturbing question remains one of the great mysteries in this entire episode

It is curious that these faux academics in the group of 88-plus who were originally so vociferous now refuse to respond to the media, bloggers, and even their own very excellent university newspaper. The sins of their silence is bested only by their perfidy to the students and to the values of the institution they purport to represent.

But, I'm an optimist, and here's why.

In reading the replies on this blog and others, and the letters in the Chronicle, there appears to be a large number of Duke alumni who are justifiably concerned about their beloved university.

Perhaps those reasonable alumni can organize to eradicate this cancer represented by the Group of 88 and their fellow travelers whose only contribution to the education of our young is teaching anger and hatred toward others who do not conform to their world view.

One Spook

Anonymous said...

anonymous
With the exception of a brave few --- Professor Coleman, Coach Kimel, and Professor Baldwin, why has there not been a response from what surely must be a majority of fair-minded professors at Duke? This very disturbing question remains one of the great mysteries in this entire episode

Because they have enough sense to know that discretion is the better part of valor.

Rather than get drug out into a wide scale pissing match and polarize the university even further, they're letting their opposition sabotage themselves.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, it is only too predictable that Haynie would respond to the inquiry by labeling it a "stupid" email.

Many of the G88/G89 live in an arrogant world in which "they lecture/others listen". Safe in the security of their Ivory Tower, they cannot imagine a world in which they are held accountable for their statements and actions.

When called upon to explain themselves, it is most typical for members of this environment to lash out. Haynie only confirms his membership in this community of academic arrogants.

Anonymous said...

i still do not understand why the original statement was rushed out to 'beat' release of dna info.

Anonymous said...

In response to my question " ... why has there not been a response from what surely must be a majority of fair-minded professors at Duke?" Anonymous 4:39:00 AM responds:

"Because they have enough sense to know that discretion is the better part of valor.

Rather than get drug out into a wide scale pissing match and polarize the university even further, they're letting their opposition sabotage themselves."


I believe "polarization" has occured mostly because of the paucity of response of the fair-minded and reasonable at Duke.

Wouldn't you rather have our youth taught by professors who have enough courage to speak out against an injustice, particularly one committed against their own students?

There is a great tradition for that type of fearless, selfless behavior in the history of the American academy ... have we lost that?

One Spook

P. Rich said...

'...The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.'

One is reminded of stupid herd beasts milling about in a dark box canyon, dimly perceiving some vague threat, warmed by the dung-encrusted bodies of their lowing comrades.

Anonymous said...

Why did it take 9 months for the G88 to give birth to a clarifying statement? As KC points out, the motion for a change of venue mentioned G88 and in paragraph 40, "[G88's] statement asserts unequivocally..." Why did G88 wait a month after that statement to clarify?

It is ironic to me that the April 6, 2006 statement stands out as a relative beacon of clarity in comparison with the statements and writings of individual G88 members.

bill anderson said...

Apparently, most of these faculty signees are of the type that even to question them is to commit an act of racism/sexism/homophobia/lookism
/whateverism.

Unfortunately, they are an academic version of the Snopes family in William Faulkner's The Hamlet. But at least the Snopeses provided some half-baked services to the community.

Anonymous said...

$1 alumni donations with short notes explaining why. Money trumps ideological agendas.

Anonymous said...

KC>excellent as usual. Yes>include a whole chapter in book. Can be used in many law school courses in future as a case study.
I have lost respect and concern for causes that I once followed. The obvious discrimination of these students by their own professors and the media has been too blatant and distructive. I see now that justice is only for certain people in their minds.
I am wondering why the g88 haven't come out to support efforts of obvious need to clean up the Durham Police Department. Their own students of color are also in jeopardy of being prejudiced by the police just for being Duke students,though not as much of a target because of their race maybe.

I hope you rebutt the outlined offenses that one of the professors gave as his reasons for harsh condemnation and 20 years in prison> he must really live in an ivory tower if he thinks no other students, AA or other have drunk under-age, hired strippers or said racial slurs in the heat of the moment. So much of his premise for villification of these students was based on lies to begin with.

We now know that the police profiled Duke students and punished them more harshly for minor offenses. I guess the g88 support the reverse discrimation and profiling being done by those in authority.It's an excellent source of income for the city of Durham and the local attorneys.

Anonymous said...

Where can i get the full list of the G88 and the clarifiers? My child is in the class of '11, and she would like to know who to avoid.

Anonymous said...

FWIW, first-years are most likely to encounter G88 in the required Writing 20 class...

m b said...

I'm having this weird first-thing-in-the-morning image/metaphor going through my mind right now: The Duke community is represented as a mostly-civilized cocktail party, and the G88 are the unfortunate but inevitable drunks who walk around slobbering on themselves, getting into people's faces raving about the most bizarre crap you've ever heard, etc. Meanwhile, the rest of the Duke community are the regular folks at the party who are just trying to have a pleasant evening and thus politely look at their watches and walk away when a G88 pulls their drunken, slobbering routine on them. However, as is the case at most of these sorts of things, there are always a few folks who once they see that the drunken fools are getting away with being, well, drunken fools, they join-in the festivities. Some people just can't help themselves.

Only in Wonderland do these sorts of bizarre, just-woke-up daydreams imitate reality.

Ralph Phelan said...

"One would guess that the peer pressure among the faculty at Duke caused other faculty members to jump on a sinking ship?"

From a career point of view, is it really a sinking ship?

Look at which people and departments at Duke have gotten increased responsibilities, more personnel, etc. in the last couple of years.

The G88 may have "lost" the legal case, but they appear to be winning the academic politics battle.

It appears that a willingness to publicly align oneself with ideology over truth is one of the most highly rewarded traits in modern academia.

Anonymous said...

The front-page of this blog has links to the G88 statement and list of signatories...

Ralph Phelan said...

"There is a great tradition for that type of fearless, selfless behavior in the history of the American academy ... have we lost that?"

Yes, back in the late 1960s, when university administrators allowed themselves to be intimidated by students rioting and taking over buildings etc. The demomstrators' leaders have since become professors and administrators, and the lunatics are truly running the asylum.

Anonymous said...

The sad, sad truth is that in our society, being seen as meritorious is a cardinal sin.

Thus, those in the academy who are more clear-minded have learned not to speak out, to avoid being seen. There are exceptions, but these are few and many work to ensure that they are made into examples, so that the number will be fewer still in the future.

Duke parent 2004 said...

In the mid 1970s I taught political science for a year at Carleton College in Minnesota. When hired, I knew that my appointment was good for only that year, as the husband-wife team whom I replaced would likely return from their leave, which they spent teaching at another college.

Soon I found myself in controversy with another member of my own department, Paul Wellstone, later to become the most liberal member of the U. S. Senate. At Carleton, Wellstone carried the banner of radical students and faculty. Although we maintained cordial relations, the shells we lobbed at each other in the student newspaper left no doubt of our ideological differences. Throughout that year, "mainstream" members of the faculty privately encouraged me to "keep at him." But never once did any of them line up beside me in a public forum. Perhaps they understood that because I'd be leaving soon I could strap on the armor without fear of being shunned forever after by the bien pensants on campus.

With few exceptions (Harvey Mansfield at Harvard, Jeremy Rabkin at Cornell, for example), college professors of traditional or conservative bent will never be mistaken for soldiers. Many of them are simply too involved in their research (that is, the real deal rather than the bilge produced in "angry studies") to engage the anti-intellectuals who in the past forty years have found sanctuary in our elite colleges and universities. Many professors in engineering and the hard sciences will privately snarl at their ideologically besotted colleagues in the humanities but will only reluctantly challenge them publicly. After all, they've seen what happens to the Steve Baldwins in their ranks. I suspect many of them fear that their own plain English will be derided by obscurantist ideologues as hopelessly unsophisticated, as incapable of addressing the "secret racism" and other chimeras posited by the Grant Farreds who have corrupted not only their own universities but also the language of discourse itself.

The bad news: Universities will be cleansed, if at all, only after environmentalists celebrate the primacy of mankind. The good news: As more alumni and concerned parents learn of the rot that has degraded the academy (the Internet and blogs such as DIW will be the engines of outrage), universities will come under increasing pressure to justify the infamy they peddle at $45,000 per year. Ironically, the very market capitalism abhorred by the tenured radicals will give better-informed parents the best weapon of all--namely, choice. Choice hardly guarantees satisfaction. But it surely beats accepting uncritically the bleatings of the Brodheads and Burnesses of our time.

miramar said...

As far as other Duke professors not coming out publicly against the 88, I get the impression that they wanted them to stew in their own juices. Nevertheless, my daughter tells me that several of her professors would make snide comments in class about them, and also celebrated the innocent verdict. I also don't think that an all out war on campus would help the university, especially when it wasn't necessary since the 88 would keep calling attention to themselves and simpy making it worse for themselves.

Unfortunately, Duke is hardly alone here. In general, the sciences and business live in their own worlds, and economics is now pure quant work. The professional schools are another world apart. As a result, many humanities departments live in their own bubbles, and it is only in cases like this when people realize what some of the professors are working on, if you can call it work. I expect that this case will serve as a wake up call to many university administrators about the kind of people they should and should not hire.

Anonymous said...

Well said, Duke Parent 2004!

Gary Packwood said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gary Packwood said...

Anonymous 8:16 said...

...Where can i get the full list of the G88 and the clarifiers? My child is in the class of '11, and she would like to know who to avoid.
::
The G88 are listed in detail at the Duke Community Forum.

http://z10.invisionfree.com/
FODU_Open_Board/index.php?showforum=2

Also, you should be able to read the course syllabus for each of your child's courses by looking for the professor and course on the Duke web site.
::
GP

Anonymous said...

I have had a Grant Fareed moment regarding the Group of 88!

88 = HH

HH = heil Hitler

heil Hitler = facist

Maybe they have gone so far left they have emerged on the far right?

Anonymous said...

Haynie reminds me of the 7 and 8 year olds who run around my neighborhood. Whenever an older kid or an adult questions something they've done, they become flustered and defensive and respond in the same inarticulate way that Haynie does ("get a freakin' life" or the ever-popular "you're stupid!"). I'm surprised Haynie didn't tell K.C. to "bite me" as well.

I understand that a child does not have a fully-developed brain, and thus cannot always be expected to articulate a rational and reasoned response when his/her behaviors or statements are questioned or challenged. However, I fail to understand why so many professors at Duke seem to have the same difficulty.

Anonymous said...

Many thanks for the links to the G88. To complete the "avoid at all costs list," is there also a list of the clarifiers who were not in the G88?

Gary Packwood said...

bill anderson 6:55 said...

...Apparently, most of these faculty signees are of the type that even to question them is to commit an act of racism/sexism/homophobia/lookism/whateverism.
::
I think Professor Anderson's comment is especially helpful for parents and others who have not been exposed to Anger Studies people and their friends.

These people have agendas and it is possible to predict the content of their sermons or how they are going to ambush a discussion.

Ninety percent of the time they will rant about... racism or sexism or homophobia or perhaps environmentalism...and they will attempt to ambush a discussion...to move their agenda forward.

Professor Anderson made this observation several months ago and I made use of his teaching last week at a monthly meeting where I volunteer as a trustee to help with issues that impact adults with hearing loss.

I asked that the first five minutes of the agenda be designated as THE TIME for any discussion about the AWFUL state of the state with respect to racism/sexism/homophobia/lookism/whateverism.

All of us learned quickly during that meeting that G88 types do not appreciate BEING ON the agenda.

Colleges and Universities including Duke would benefit greatly if they actually place their G88 on the agenda...and then sit back quietly and watch who is really listening.
::
GP

Anonymous said...

I am SICK of reading about the Group of 88 and their "social causes". If they are so interested in equality for EVERYONE, I wonder if they donate their rather hefty Duke paychecks to poor innner city families? Do they have cell phones, have cable TV, drive automobiles?

They are all a bunch of social hypocrites!
Besides, I am sure 3/4ths of the Group of 88 acheived their education and positions through affirmative action and not through independent academic credentials!

bill anderson said...

Duke Parent 2004, well-said indeed. The radical faculty at any university ultimately are anti-civilization and anti-discourse. It is fitting that Paul Wellstone went into politics, as he was able to do what these people dream of doing: seize power.

Not only have we witnessed how these people are tyrants on a university campus, but we also see what happens when their belief system seeps into the law. If it were up to the G88 and their ideological soulmates around the country, Reade, Collin, and David would be in prison right now, serving hard time for something that never happened.

That is the reality of campus radicalism. When I was in college, the campus radicals were celebrating Pol Pot and the murder of half of Cambodia. We had near-worship sessions of Mao in my religion classes, and the continuous propaganda that all we needed for a good life was for the state to take over and kill and imprison a lot of people. I see nothing has changed.

Gary Packwood said...

Anonymous 9:37 said...
...Many thanks for the links to the G88. To complete the "avoid at all costs list," is there also a list of the clarifiers who were not in the G88?
::
http://concerneddukefaculty.org/
::
GP

Anonymous said...

GP, thanks

Anonymous said...

like rodney jones, universities want everyone to get along

but only if smart people are willing to remain silent---only if tradional fairness is sacraficed to paganism, to constitutional revisionism, to the worst aspects of the non melting pot of envious african and spic/latino cultures whose main soverign nations NEVER REPAY DEBTS AS A MATTER OF THEIR CULTURE

the group of 88 will ne a thorn in the side of deuke trustees as the approval for their conduct to encourage LEGAL GUILT BIAS WITHOUT FACTS...IS REPEATED AND REPEATED IN books, articles, interviews, college student discussions ...the lack of courage by broadrotten is the equivalent to vichy france...

until trustee actions are taken against these anti american professors, sanctioning their call to disorder, sanctioning their political grade decisions, and removing them from contact with the student body, then duke will act more like a third world government than a first rate university

Anonymous said...

To 8:16 am. You can get a list of the G88, G89, their statements, etc here:
http://z10.invisionfree.com/FODU_Open_Board/index.php?s=722a2cc975225fbe567868d4e7194ce1&showtopic=4&st=0&#entry2429674

Anonymous said...

A minor correction to GP's statement about class syllabi--you can't always access complete course syllabi on the open web (though enrolled students can usually get these through Blackboard, which is password protected).

But the schedule of courses for each semester, available through the Duke Registrar's website, http://www.siss.duke.edu/schedule/,
includes links to course synopses for each class, which usually provide a fair amount of information about topics and texts. These descriptions, and sometimes complete syllabi, are also made available by some (but not all) departments through the department websites.

Stephen said...

The comments regarding this post are the most literate, thoughtful and articulate that I have read since I have been following K C's postings (about 6 months). K C's respondants are typically intelligent, with a firm grasp on what is fair, what is right and a remarkable degree of common courtesy. You all are to be commended.

Anonymous said...

"I'm guessing that the majority of the faculty is intimidated in a way that is similar to the residents of those high rise apartment buildings in NYC years ago who refused to dial 911 even when they were aware that terrible crimes were being committed in front of their building."

Gary, this sounds like a reference to the murder of Kitty Genovese, and the neighbors who were allegedly aware that there was an attack in progress but refused to call police, or even (in some tellings) watched the attack unfold.

If so, you'll probably want to research the Genovese incident, as a lot of the initial reports on the incident, the ones which gave birth to the "metanarrative", were later shown to be misleading if not completely incorrect. Many of those who supposedly knew of the attack and did nothing probably did not know that what they were hearing was an attack, or that it was ongoing, and of those who did know, many did contact the police, contrary to the popular belief. See http://www.oldkewgardens.com/ss-nytimes-3.html for a more full analysis.

Anonymous said...

How many of the original "signatories" actually gave their explicit permission before their names were added? (Hasn't this been an issue all along?)

It's not a crime if the victim is unwilling to press charges. Just so can people's names be added if they're too intimidated to object afterward.

Anonymous said...

"It looks like we have a 'Gang of 115'". 12:43 AM

Horowitz wrote a book about the 100 most dangerous academics. Bernard Goldberg wrote a book about 100 people who are screwing up America.

Both could have written their books without leaving Durham!!

highcotton said...

Speaking of Houston Baker...

I was horrified to learn that arguably the worst 'gang' member of all had left Duke to join the faculty at Vanderbilt University. I wrote Gordon Gee, the Chancellor at VU, to express my dismay. I asked that he do some in-depth research into Baker's writings and public comments. And I suggested, as politely as possible, that I felt he would then have to agree that Baker was a threat to academia rather than an asset. I received no answer to that or to several follow-up emails.

That was all months and months ago. Funniest thing -- I finally received a response just this morning. Chancellor Gee made 3 points. First, Houston Baker is one of the intellectual giants in this country. (Gosh, who knew?) Secondly, he is absolutely certain that anything negative attributed to Baker has been lifted out of context or distorted or misquoted or yada, yada, yada. (The unspoken implication, of course, being that the lifting, distorting and misquoting was being done by anti-intellectual lowlifes like me....) Finally, he haughtily reminded me that it really doesn't matter what he's written or said anyway because, like me, he enjoys freedom of speech.

Wow, a real smack-down, huh? I am properly chastised! But it wasn't all a total waste of time, because I did gain some valuable insight that I happily share with you. WARNING to all Vandy alums and parents of prospective college students: Gee is a Brodhead clone!

mb said...

miramar said: "Unfortunately, Duke is hardly alone here. In general, the sciences and business live in their own worlds, and economics is now pure quant work. The professional schools are another world apart. As a result, many humanities departments live in their own bubbles, and it is only in cases like this when people realize what some of the professors are working on, if you can call it work. I expect that this case will serve as a wake up call to many university administrators about the kind of people they should and should not hire."

It's worse than that mirarmar - most all of the professional administrators in higher education in the U.S. are products of the affirmative action 'pipeline' G88 machine, if not directly members themselves. For all their bluster about "diversity," openness, fair play, equal opportunity, etc., the cronyism in the system is worse than any of the "Old Boys' Clubs" those people railed against. It's truly a cesspool, and IMO the only way to fix it is to completely dismantle the current structure and start over. That would mean firing all of the mid- and upper-level administrators and career track personnel, having any and all of them who wish to continue in the career re-apply under new and more stringent and open rules and criteria, and then only hiring the ones who are indeed qualified and at the same time capable of doing their jobs in a non-political manner. I know this would be very disruptive to the system, but IMO that's exactly what the system needs: Complete disruption.

wayne fontes said...

Anon 4:39 said:

Because they have enough sense to know that discretion is the better part of valor.

Rather than get drug out into a wide scale pissing match and polarize the university even further, they're letting their opposition sabotage themselves.

Polarize to what? Who represents the conservative element at Duke? To my knowledge Coleman, Gustafson and Baldwin would all be considered centrist to liberal democrats. I think what you meant to say was every time the G88 open their mouths they reveal themselves to be Marxist, hard left, lunatic left (readers choose your favorite) purveyors of the latest trendy "ism".

Anonymous said...

highcotton @ 12:31

Regarding the response you got from Pres. Gee of Vanderbilt, was this an e'mail? If so, could you share it with us? If it was a hard copy response, could you scan it and let us link to it?

As for me, as long as Pres. Gee remains in charge, Vanderbilt will not be on my children's list of possible universities.

No justice, no peace said...

The Duke schedule of classes

Duke Official Schedule of Courses

An inexpensive tool to see how students rate professors.

Pick-a-Prof

Also go to the department web sites, select the specific professor, and see the quality of their work. Don't be surprised if you cannot find either the publication of links to the articles.

If you really want to have some fun email them and request they send you their published works, or at least link you to their work.

The lack of transparency of these frauds is criminal at $60k per year. The fact that the President of the University abets their behavior is as appalling.

No justice, no peace said...

Make certain you review what your children are enrolling in each semester. Around my house if any come in with a course like those taught in the fraud departments, they will drop them. If they decide they wish to follow a course of study from the frauds, then they are on their own and must pay for the worthless degree themselves.

Anonymous said...

Highcotton - Thanks for the Post. Looks like Gee, will be surprised, when Houston brings negative attention to the school. well, then they deserve what they get.

Gary Packwood said...

Anonymous 11:53 said...

...Gary, this sounds like a reference to the murder of Kitty Genovese, and the neighbors who were allegedly aware that there was an attack in progress but refused to call police, or even (in some tellings) watched the attack unfold.
::
Thank You. I appreciate the reference and I will read and study this evening when I get home.

After studying the current Duke Lacrosse case, I need to sort through all of the metanarratives floating around in my brain and do a truth check.

I probably should have used the example of the hundreds of employees within the CIA who were shocked but silent when President Bush announced that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.
::
GP

Anonymous said...

So the Chancellor of Vanderbilt thinks that Houston "whites Are Farm Animals" Baker is an "intellectual giant"? Funny, because Baker is an acolyte of Louis Farrakhan.

http://www.blackculturalstudies.org/baker/march.html

Anonymous said...

"When asked why he signed the 'clarifying' statement, Haynie’s reply, en toto, was, 'Get a freaking life! Quote me!'"

"A half-hour later, he e-mailed back, writing, 'Please don’t send me any additional stupid emails on this topic.'"

"Some people might wonder how Haynie considered himself a figure who could lecture others on the need for 'mutual respect.'"

...What a clown. The self-aggrandizing, self-centered, self-orbiting, self-congratulatory epitome of the kind of insouciant academic professional the worship of identity politics in colleges has created. This guy should be selling insurance or personal-injury legal representation.

Easy to act as if a case like this doesn't matter, when your livelihood and personal identity are 100% protected by the enormous political infrastructure of a university, and thereby insulated against criticism or correction.

Dr. Haynie's CV is purely political, and racially segregated into only Black Issues; this is a man who has probably never had to produce tangible results in his life-- just words. We all know what obfuscations academic prose produces.

Oddly enough, this kind of breezy nonchalance reminds me most, in a free-associative way, of Francis Macomber, a character of the racist sexist anti-gay Ernest Hemingway.

If you substitute his academic career for the references to the wife, and his various publications in place of the named hobbies, the htoughtless unconcern Dr. Haynie evinces for Dr. Johnson's question fits right in:

"...she would not leave him ever now. That was one of the few things that he really knew. He knew about that, about motor cycles-that was earliest-about motor cars, about duck-shooting, about fishing, trout, salmon and big-sea, about sex in books, many books, too many books, about all court games, about dogs, not much about horses, about hanging on to his money, about most of the other things his world dealt in, and about his wife not leaving him..."

Macomber's insecure possession of his wife is just like the tenuous hold on intellectual legitimacy that academics like Dr. Haynie-- and all those who acheived their credentialling mostly through flogging their racial identity-- possess.

The workaday business world of obtaining results would leave Dr. Haynie crying like a cat floating on a piece of wreckage.

Quote me!

Anonymous said...

Just for the record. A professor is not someone who knows anything but one who "professes" to know. This is the Socratic tradition we in the west have inherited. Therefore, a "professor" delights in answering questions from people so he can prove that he knows what he is talking about. The more determined,insistent , even angry the questions the more the professor is pleased for it shows interest, and interest can possibly be turned into passion for the subject. If you find a professor who doesn't like to be questioned or who thinks he has already been certified and has earned the right to ask questions not answer them, you can be sure he is a fraud.

Brant Jones

Anonymous said...

Law School 72' says--I have been watching with interest how the alums of Dartmouth College have been slowly but surely replacing the PC airheads on their board of trustees with real people. Any way we could emulate them?

Anonymous said...

KC - you were, and still are, a valuable free-speech source in exposing the abuses of individual freedom concerning the Duke Lacrosse case.

However, your concerns and comments against the "Duke 88" are nothing more than the same stuff "conservatives" have been saying about "academic" abuse for years.

There’s nothing you write here going change anything about the Duke “88.” Ward Churchill still has a job at Colorado, and that son of a bitch coward has actually slapped women, and brandished an assault rifle for photo opportunities. He gets away with it because of the “liberal” left-wing cowardice that you’re now one of the perceived “right-wingers” railing against.

Welcome to reality. We’re glad to have you. Don't expect change quickly, though.

- Rick

Anonymous said...

Allow me to add my sincere compliments to the "duke parent 2004 at 8:49AM" for what is one of the most articulate and outstanding posts I have ever read on any forum, anywhere in the blogeshpere.

If I were KC, I'd add that comment in its entirety to my book.

The majority of comments in this forum are emblematic of the real beauty that can be found when the blogeshpere is used to its best advantage, and KC is primarily responsible for that by the eloquent substance of his contributions and by keeping a sharp eye on the comments with a deft finger on the Delete key.

I have read a good deal of forum comments during my over 10 years on the net and have usually been reluctant to comment because so many forums become fractured by off-topic comments and often dissolve into churlish debates between commenters.

This forum is a notable exception, and I am humbled to be among all of you in this discussion.

And as for "duke parent 2004," you strike me as just the type of person who could organize and lead an effort to bring about positive change at Duke ... and I'd be honored to join you.

One Spook

kenb said...

Gordon Gee was president of my university for several years and made himself a very popular figure around town and on the campus - but, among those who *knew the details*, his reputation was not at all high.

Earlier he had been president at West Virginia, and when I was working later at another college in that state, I learned that people who had dealt with him really did not like him.

The details are probably supererogatory, given what has been posted above, but it seems that he was very skilful at projecting an image quite at variance with reality. He also, by the way, was good at coopting the radical students.

Mark Riherd, Pratt 09 said...

To the parent of the class of 2011,

I'm sure that you've found the list of 88 by now.

On that same note, while many of these professors are extremist in their political veiws, not all of them pollute the classroom. Two of them that I've had myself are:

Socolar - Physics 61, sucks as a teacher, but politics and physics don't mix

Boatwright - Latin and Roman History, amazing. I love everything about the class (except my final grade, which i deserved). She occasionally allows her feminist feelings to show, but she contains herself, and stays on topic. At the worst, she'll calmly rant on the postition and rights of women in Rome for 10 minutes, then get back to the original topic.

More on topic, I've never really read DIW, but this article brought up many of the things that I've thought about the group of 88 and their intial and secondary statements.

I find that the statements themselves lay somewhere between the boundaries of 'lets talk about the underlying issues here' and 'lets lynch these laxers.' Their timing was wonderful from an acemidic perspective, suddenly everyone wanted to talk about the event. But from a worldly perspective, the statements have an inflamatory tone, effectively inflaming the masses. While the group of 88 could have accomplished something with their actions though lecturing about gender and race or a less anti white/male ad in the chron, the inclusion of current events and the emotions that were riled effectively halted whatever good could have come out of the situation.

Hopefully good will come out of this. I've always thought that the black studies and women studies should be downsized from majors to minors in order to let interested persons learn the subject, but still remain connected to the rest of the university through a more mainstream major. I also think that the administration should spend more time on the quad speaking with students rather than with the university's special interest groups.

-MR

David Wynn said...

The article is very well written for the most part, but I have one critique.

Your second point asks why did the clarification not include all of the words from the original article. This is true, but confusing, because I thought that the point of issuing a clarification was to highlight what was important and discard what wasn't.

Whether or not the group should have trod more carefully to begin with, or that a number of original signers refused to sign the clarification, or especially if there was deception in the claims of department stances are all issues that seem fair and balanced for discussion. However, I find that criticizing a clarification for choosing not to reprint the article it clarifies verbatim is an invalid point.