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Biased Campus


Got to NYT very late yesterday, where I finally found John Tierney’s article on bias in the academy. This piece announces the publication of several empirical studies of faculty bias (which I know was briefly mentioned in The Corner, but is worth highlighting). Here are some key excerpts: “…a national survey of more than 1,000 academics, shows that Democratic professors outnumber Republicans by at least seven to one in the humanities and social sciences. That ratio is more than twice as lopsided as it was three decades ago, and it seems quite likely to keep increasing, because younger faculty members are more consistently Democratic than the ones nearing retirement.” A study of voter registration records at two major universities “which included professors from the hard sciences, engineering and professional schools as well as the humanities and social sciences, also found the ratio especially lopsided among the younger professors of assistant or associate rank: 183 Democrats versus 6 Republicans.” These stats are important. But the pathetic rationalizations for this bias by the liberal professors interviewed by Tierney are almost as interesting as the numbers. The conservative profs get the last laugh in this piece, though. Thanks goodness for John Tierney. One item especially caught my attention. The ratio of Democratic to Republican professors ranged from 3 to 1 among economists to 30 to 1 among anthropologists. I’m an anthropologist, and I am not in the least surprised.


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