In the aftermath of September 11, 2001, institutions of higher learning have been subjected to an increasingly sophisticated infrastructure of surveillance, intervention, and control. Are the dark clouds hovering over academic life a passing storm, or do they betoken a structural shift that undermines a key pillar of democratic societies?
This book brings together some of the nation’s leading scholars to analyze the new challenges facing the system of higher education in the United States, including the rise of conflicting interpretations of what constitutes academic freedom. In clear and powerful prose, the essays in this volume provide a solid platform for informed classroom and public discussions on the philosophical foundations, institutional practices, and political dimensions of academic freedom in the twenty-first century.
Essays by Joel Beinin, Judith Butler, Beshara Doumani, Kathleen J. Frydl, Amy Newhall, Robert Post, and Philippa Strum.
“These original and remarkably intelligent and profound essays, representing diverse analytical perspectives, should be read by anyone interested in the future vitality of American universities.” —Jonathan R. Cole, Columbia University
“Challenges to academic freedom are as deep today as they have been since the McCarthy era. They come not only from political attacks and security concerns but from structural transformations in higher education. All those who care about knowledge and the university need to pay attention. This book is one of the best places to start.” —Craig Calhoun, President, Social Science Research Council
“This is a vital and timely book in view of the insidious campaign under way to undermine the freedom and autonomy of the universities, to intimidate outspoken voices on campus, and to silence one of the few zones left in American public life where corporate/government newspeak does not dominate. These insightful essays analyze the nature of the peril menacing academic freedom since September 11, and suggest strategies for dealing with it.” —Rashid Khalidi, Edward Said Professor of Arab Studies, Columbia University