Episode 2.12: Academic Freedom and the Work of the University - Joan Wallach Scott


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FREE SPEECH BATTLES Interviewer: RAFAEL KHACHATURIAN.In an era when “free speech on campus” has become a slogan weaponized by conservative groups, historian JOAN WALLACH SCOTT insists on treating academic freedom not as an individual right of untrammeled speech, but as a collective right to carry out the work of universities: teaching, researching, and learning. In her discussion with political theorist Rafael Khachaturian, Scott argues that institutional changes are at the root of current crises in academic freedom, as universities increasingly envision themselves as businesses, their students as customers – rather than citizens in training – and their largely non-tenured faculty as an expendable workforce. Scott is the author of Knowledge, Power, and Academic Freedom (2019). Note: This interview was recorded in October 2020.

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