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Monday, August 12, 2019

Subject: Common Sense in Free Fall on College Campuses

Evidence is mounting that political ideology is corrupting the liberal arts.

According to Campus Reform, in late July, Portland State University accused one of its professors, Peter Boghossian, of “‘questionable ethical behavior’ and banned him from conducting academic research.”

What was the professor’s offense? He successfully convinced several prestigious, peer-reviewed journals to publish articles that were anything but scholarly. In one, he analyzed “dog rape culture,” in another, he republished portions of Adolf Hitler’s “Mein Kampf,” spruced up with academic buzzwords.

This may sound like an off-color prank, but it was a serious effort to expose a grave problem on college campuses. Boghossian’s hypothesis was simple: the leftist fixation on intersectionality and what he termed “grievance studies” have led to a sharp decline in the quality and rigor of scholarship within the discipline.

Boghossian and his two colleagues, Helen Pluckrose and James Lindsay, made headlines in 2018 for completing an investigation into how lax some humanities journals had become.

The trio wrote and submitted 20 “hoax” articles to several prominent academic journals in various academic fields, including gender and queer studies, that the researchers felt were most influenced by progressive ideology rather than objective research.

When seven of their “fake” studies were published after undergoing the purportedly-scrupulous “peer review” process, Boghossian and his team released a report demonstrating how ideologically-driven academia has become.


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