Phi Beta Cons

Dissenters at Conferences

Anne Neal has sent out a posting on the Athena Roundtable, a symposium this fall hosted by ACTA. The roster includes distinguished names, but one of them stands out: John K. Wilson, author of The Myth of Political Correctness: The Conservative Attack on Higher Education
This is a praiseworthy tendency I’ve seen at other conservative meetings, the invitation of prominent figures from the other side.  In 2001, for instance, the NAS included in its annual meeting the leftist CUNY sociologist Stanley Aronowitz, and the 2002 meeting had Todd Gitlin, a staunch liberal, though he does despise the academic left.
One could add to the list of leftists welcomed at conservative havens a few of the guest speakers at West Point, Noam Chomsky and Al Franken.
And at a symposium on “Social Studies and the Battle for America’s Soul” at the American Enterprise Institute, hosted by Rick Hess, conservative panelists William Bennett and Senator Lamar Alexander were blanaced by former president of the National

Council for the Social Studies, Rick Theisen.
One seeks in vain for the same openness at many academic gatherings.

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