Dear Academics: Enough With the Free Speech Rhetoric!

November 16, 2023 1 min read

Richard Amesbury and Catherine O’Donnell
Chronicle of Higher Education

Excerpt: Academics are losing the support of the public. We read it in newspapers, we see it in surveys, we feel it in our bones. There are many dimensions to this problem. One is the claim that colleges restrict speech and lack intellectual diversity.

Whether and by whom free speech is under threat on campuses are hotly debated questions. Less commonly examined, however, are the assumptions that free speech is a cardinal virtue of higher education, and that colleges should aspire to a diversity of opinions. Are these goals in their own right, as college administrators often seem to think, or means for achieving something else altogether?

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