organization:american association of university professors

  • Israeli universities urged to bar professors from calling to boycott

    We will not be used as a ’political thought police for the government,’ heads of universities say in unusually harsh response

    Yarden Zur Mar 25, 2018

    A panel for higher education headed by Education Minister Naftali Bennett adopted a code of ethics Sunday that moves to bar academics from calling for a boycott of Israel. 
    The subcommittee of the Council for Higher Education, in adopting this measure and a list of other principles prohibiting discrimination and advocacy based on political beliefs, rejected a controversial ethical code written by Prof. Asa Kasher at Bennett’s request.
    The heads of the universities in Israel harshly rejected the move, saying they would not agree to be “used as a political thought police for the government.” The move “continues the unfortunate line by which the ethical code is political sensorship that crushes underfoot the most basic principles of academic freedom,” it added. 
    The principles do not mention a specific call to ban academic boycotts in the settlements, but calls for a “ban on discrimination, positive or negative, of students based on their political opinions,” and a “ban on discrimination, positive or negative, of a faculty member or candidate for such or for promotion, based on their political opinions.”
    The measures would extend to both teaching faculty and administrators. The fourth principle bans “party propaganda in the framework of teaching,” and the fifth would prohibit “presenting or publishing materials “with political or personal opinions as if they are the opinions of the institution.”

    Education Minister Naftali Bennett speaking at a Knesset committee in February, 2018.אילן אסייג
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    The committee also proposed that lecturers be prohibited from “wrongly taking advantage of the teaching platform to systematically and improperly exhort a political position that clearly exceeds what is required by the teaching of the course in its broader context within its field.”

    The adopted principles were formulated last week and sent to the heads of Israel’s academic institutions for response. The issue will then be brought before the entire council.
    The subcommittee recommends that these principles become part of institutions’ disciplinary codes by early 2019; however, there is some uncertainty among panel members as to whether this can be enforced by the council.
    Adoption of the recommendations, a source told Haaretz, are ultimately up to the institutions themselves because the council is left with no avenue to enforce the measures. The only existing means against an institution that does not respond to the recommendations is to revoke its recognition as an institution of higher education, and that, of course, is unrealistic.
    “A code of ethics,” said the source, “is designed to define and spell out accepted norms of conduct in a specific community, and divergence from it can’t be considered a disciplinary infraction.”
    The original, rejected ethical code formulated by Kasher included wide-ranging directives in almost all areas of academic life, including campus activity, the classroom, publications and promotions, and was met with wide protest in the academic world. 
    Kasher’s ethical code treated the issue more stringently, stating that a lecturer “will not allow himself to deviate from the syllabus and the field of the academic unit, neither for political activity nor for similar exhortation, beyond a momentary and insignificant deviation. A significant deviation, for political purposes or similar exhortation, is improper and might also constitute wrongly taking advantage of authority.”
    Earlier, the Committee of University Heads called the code “a collection of government-dictated rules over an ensemble of academic activities of the academic faculty in Israel.
    The American Association of University Professors, harshly criticized Kasher’s code, stating that it was damaging to Israeli democracy.

  • Contingent No More

    Academia is in the midst of an acute, unsustainable crisis. For those working in the higher-education industry, and increasingly for those outside of it, it has become impossible to ignore.

    New generations of faculty and students crushed by unprecedented levels of debt; the increased precariousness of the academic labor force; the systematic devaluation of academic labor itself; the corporate-style structuring of higher education—something, somehow is going to give.

    In spite of the cold facts—that “contingent faculty” make up more than 70 percent of the academic labor force, that the gap between doctorates awarded and jobs available is wider than ever, that the overwhelming majority of academic workers live in a state of economic insecurity—we remain individually hypnotized by the poisonous conviction that hard work is all we need, that the “best” people in the best programs produce the best work, etc.

    The neoliberalization of higher education is every academic’s problem. This is the reality in which we are all participating, even those of us at “top” programs, even those of us who have reached the promised land of tenure. Not surprisingly, many at the top are mostly fine with it. But their eager complicity makes it all the more incumbent on the rest of us to recognize how deeply the current system skews all relevant outcomes—from the accrual of professional prestige to basic salary-and-benefit protections—in the favor of the already privileged.

    #université #crise #académie #néolibéralisme #néo-libéralisme #précarité #précarisation #travail #mythe #méritocratie #hiérarchie

    Avec une belle et longue #bibliographie :

    Resources for Resistance (an introductory bibliography) :

    Craig Lambert, Harvard Magazine, “The ‘Wild West’ of Academic Publishing”

    The Conversation, Articles on Academic Journal Debate

    Hugh Gusterson, The Chronicle of Higher Education, “Want to Change Academic Publishing? Just Say No“

    Michael White, Pacific Standard, “How to Change the Centuries-Old Model of Academic Publishing”

    Jonathan Gray, The Guardian, “It’s Time to Stand Up to Greedy Academic Publishers”

    Jane C. Hu, The Atlantic, “Academics Want You to Read Their Work for Free”

    Modern Languages Association, “The Future of Scholarly Publishing” (2002 Report)

    American Council of Learned Societies, “Crises and Opportunities: The Futures of Scholarly Publishing” (2003 Report)

    Christover J. Broadhurst and Georgianna L. Martin (Eds.), “Radical Academia”? Understanding the Climate for Campus Activists

    The Sociological Imagination, Radical Education Projects

    Robin D.G. Kelley, Boston Review, “Black Study, Black Struggle”

    Simon Batterbury, The Winnower, “Who Are the Radical Academics Today?“

    Gwendolyn Beetham, Feministing, “The Academic Feminist: Summer at the Archives with Chicana Por Mi Raza (An Interview with Maria Cotera)”

    The SIGJ2 Writing Collective, Antipode, “What Can We Do? The Challenge of Being New Academics in Neoliberal Universities”

    Culum Canally, Antipode, “Timidity and the ‘Radical’ Academic Mind: A Response to the SIGJ2 Writing Collective”

    Yasmin Nair, Current Affairs, “The Dangerous Academic Is an Extinct Species“

    Cary Nelson, American Association of University Professors, “A Faculty Agenda for Hard Times”

    Jennifer Ruth, Remaking the University, “When Tenure-Track Faculty Take On the Problem of Adjunctification“

    Thomas Duke, The Undercurrent, “The Cause of the Adjunct Crisis: How a Research Focus is Destroying Higher Education”

    Debra Leigh Scott, Adjunct Nation, “How American Universities Have Destroyed Scholarship in the U.S.“

    Mary Elizabeth Luka, Alison Harvey, Mél Hogan, Tamara Shepherd, Andrea Zeffiro, Studies in Social Justice, “Scholarship as Cultural Production in the Neoliberal University: Working Within and Against ‘Deliverables’”

    Alison Mountz, Anne Bonds, Becky Mansfield, Jenna Loyd, Jennifer Hyndman, Margaret Walton-Roberts, Ranu Basu, Risa Whitson, Roberta Hawkins, Trina Hamilton, Winifred Curran, ACME, “For Slow Scholarship: A Feminist Politics of Resistance through Collective Action in the Neoliberal University”

    Sarah Banet-Weiser, Alexandra Juhasz, International Journal of Communications, “Feminist Labor in Media Studies/Communication”

    Heather Fraser and Nik Taylor, Neoliberalization, Universities, and the Public Intellectual

    Kevin Birmingham, The Chronicle of Higher Education, “‘The Great Shame of Our Profession’”

    Mac Bousquet, How the University Works: Higher Education and the Low-Wage Nation

    Shannon Ikebe and Alexandra Holmstrom-Smith, Berkeley Journal of Sociology, “Union Democracy, Student Labor, and the Fight for Public Education”

    Anonymous, Inside Higher Ed, “Treadmill to Oblivion”

    Lucia Lorenzi, thoughts on mediocrity

    Miya Tokumitsu, Jacobin, “In the Name of Love”

    Sarah Kendzior, Vitae, “The Adjunct Crisis Is Everyone’s Problem”

    Hamilton Nolan, Gawker, “The Horrifying Reality of the Academic Job Market”

    Denise Cummins, PBS, “Why the Backlash against Adjuncts Is an Indictment of the Tenure System”

    Christopher Newfield, American Association of University Professors, “Avoiding the Coming Higher Ed Wars”

    Henry A. Giroux, Truthout, “Angela Davis, Freedom and the Politics of Higher Education”

    Charles R. Hale (Ed.), Engaging Contradictions: Theory, Politics, and Methods of Activist Scholarship

    Fred Moten and Stefano Harney, Social Text, “The University and the Undercommons: Seven Theses”

    Ji-Young Um, #alt-academy, “On Being a Failed Professor: Lessons from the Margins and the Undercommons”

    Undercommoning Collective, ROAR, “Undercommoning within, against, and beyond the University-as-Such”

    Zach Schwartz-Weinstein, Is This What Democracy Looks Like?, “Not Your Academy: Occupation and the Future of Student Struggles“

    Trish Kahle and Michael Billeaux, Jacobin, “Resisting the Corporate University”

    Levi Gahman, ROAR, “Dismantling Neoliberal Education: A Lesson from the Zapatistas“