Farewell, then, university days….
Campus, the '60s Began to Fade as Liberal Professors Retire....
|By Patricia Cohen, The New York Times, July 3, 2008
MADISON, Wis. - When Michael Olneck was standing, arms linked with other protestors, singing "We Shall Not Be Moved" in front of Columbia University's library in 1968, Sara Goldrick-Rab had not yet been born.
When he won tenure at the University of Wisconsin here in 1980, she was 3. And in January, when he retires at 62, Ms. Goldrick-Rab will be just across the hall, working to earn a permanent spot on the same faculty from which he is departing.
Together, these Midwestern academics, one leaving the professoriate and another working her way up, are part of a vast generational change that is likely to profoundly alter the culture at American universities and colleges over the next decade. Baby boomers, hired in large numbers during a huge expansion in higher education that continued into the 70s, are being replaced by younger professors who many of the nearly 50 of the academics interviewed by the New York Times believe are different from their predecessors - less ideologically polorized and more politically moderate.
"There's definitely something happening," said Peter W. Wood, executive director of the National Association of Scholars, which was created in 1987 to counter attacks on Western culture and values. "I hear from quite a few faculty members and graduate students from around the country. They are not really interested in fighting the battles that have been fought over the past twenty years."
....In general, information on professors' political and ideological leanings tends to be scarce. But a new study of the social and political views of American professors by Neil Gross at the University of British Columbia and solon Simmons of George Mason University found that the notion of a generational divide is more than a glancing impression. "Self-described liberals are most common within the ranks of those professors aged 50-64, who were teenagers or young adults in the 1960's," they wrote, making up just under 50 percent.
....When it comes to those who consider themselves "liberal activists," 17.2 percent of the 50-64 age group take up the banner compared with only 1.3 percent of professors 35 and younger.
"These findings with regard to age provide further support of the idea that, in recent years, the trend has been toward increasing moderatism," the study says.
The authors are not talking about a political realignment. Democrats continue to overwhelmingly outnumber Republicans among faculty, young and old. But as educators have noted, the generation coming up appears less interested in ideological confrontations, summoning Barack Obama's statement about the elections of 2000 and 2004: "I sometimes felt as if I were watching the psychodrama of the Baby Boom generation - a tale rooted in old grudges and revenge plots hatched on a handful of college campuses long ago - played out on the national stage.
|Less ideologically polorized
and more politically moderate, Caroline? Hmmmm? TA
So their 'world' didn't really come into fruition did it? But then, it was really just a dream of a different world that was still largely based on Western culture.
And well done Barack Obama's statement for summing up the case
quite well. And well done for having the most awful name a Presidential
candidate could possibly have.
|The table below shows the results of Gross and Simmons "The Social and Political Views of American Professors: