Ideological Discrimination in Academia Is More Complicated than You Think

Students on the campus of Harvard University in 2009 (Brian Snyder/Reuters)
Faculty feel less threatened by the opinions of undergraduates than by those of Ph.D. students and their peers.

NRPLUS MEMBER ARTICLE M any right-of-center students (especially those who are grade-obsessed) self-censor, fearing that their professors will punish them for their political and cultural views if they were to express them in class discussions or assignments.

It’s easy to understand why they are concerned. The dearth of ideological diversity in the professoriate is significant; in social-research fields, the left-to-right ratio is roughly 10:1. Professors rarely assign readings by conservative or libertarian intellectuals, let alone engage with such thinkers in a charitable way. Faculty regularly make off-topic jabs at Trump or the Republicans, or even end up digressing into full-on rants. Professors who are moderate

Something to Consider

If you enjoyed this article, we have a proposition for you: Join NRPLUS. Members get all of our content (including the magazine), no paywalls or content meters, an advertising-minimal experience, and unique access to our writers and editors (through conference calls, social media groups, and more). And importantly, NRPLUS members help keep NR going.

If you enjoyed this article and want to see more content like this, we have a proposition for you: Join NRPLUS.


Join Now
Musa al-Gharbi is a Paul F. Lazarsfeld Fellow in Sociology at Columbia University and a senior fellow at Heterodox Academy.


The Latest