During my time at Babson, political messaging and identity were less prominent among professors. But after the group of student demonstrators who rocked campuses in the 60s decided to become professors and never leave, the cohort of professors has gotten steadily more liberal. Sam Goldman, writing at The American Conservative says this leftward shift makes a difference, and could prevent challenges to misconceived or prejudicial ideas on campus.
The Heterodox Academy blog is circulating an overview of political opinion among college faculty. As the graph shows, more professors lean to the left today than even a few decades ago.
It is a problem. The absence of conservatives means important questions won’t be asked and possible answers won’t be proposed and tested. A conservative presence is also important for ensuring that the curriculum includes certain classic works and unfashionable topics or methods. Finally, in a monolithically leftist academy, students won’t be exposed to a wide range of arguments and perspectives, leaving them dependent on conventional wisdom. In this respect, a stronger conservative presence is actually essential to the progressive task of challenging prejudice.
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