The Corner

Harvey “C-Minus” Mansfield

A vociferous opponent of grade inflation, Professor Harvey C. Mansfield of Harvard has earned the nickname “Harvey ‘C-Minus’ Mansfield.” Today on Uncommon Knowledge, Professor Mansfield explains what’s wrong with grade inflation—and his own, now legendary, solution to the problem:  keeping two sets of books.

There is something sick in the spectacle of mature adults showering young people with unbelievable praise, that professors who have devoted their lives to their field should be so quick to find excellence in so many students.  It just doesn’t make sense that 50% of a Harvard class can receive an A or A-.  And yet that’s what our average is.  To show my contempt for the grade inflation that we have at Harvard, I decided to give my students two grades.  One is the grade that goes to the registrar – that’s the “ironic grade” that is based on the Harvard average.  The other one is a private grade from me to them telling them what they really deserve.

Click here.

Peter Robinson — Peter M. Robinson is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution.

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Students’ Anti-Gun Views

Are children innocents or are they leaders? Are teenagers fully autonomous decision-makers, or are they lumps of mental clay, still being molded by unfolding brain development? The Left seems to have a particularly hard time deciding these days. Take, for example, the high-school students from Parkland, ... Read More
Elections

Romney Is a Misfit for America

Mitt’s back. The former governor of Massachusetts and occasional native son of Michigan has a new persona: Mr. Utah. He’s going to bring Utah conservatism to the whole Republican party and to the country at large. Wholesome, efficient, industrious, faithful. “Utah has a lot to teach the politicians in ... Read More
Law & the Courts

What the Second Amendment Means Today

The horrifying school massacre in Parkland, Fla., has prompted another national debate about guns. Unfortunately, it seems that these conversations are never terribly constructive — they are too often dominated by screeching extremists on both sides of the aisle and armchair pundits who offer sweeping opinions ... Read More
U.S.

Fire the FBI Chief

American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More
Film & TV

Black Panther’s Circle of Hype

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) first infantilizes its audience, then banalizes it, and, finally, controls it through marketing. This commercial strategy, geared toward adolescents of all ages, resembles the Democratic party’s political manipulation of black Americans, targeting that audience through its ... Read More