Bias in Academia

Take Those PC Blinders Off: How to Read Mainstream Books

theylive

As a rule, I encourage all people, and perhaps especially political heretics on the Alt Right, to read some mainstream books, especially history books. I am obviously not discouraging the reading of courageous dissident historians like Dominique Venner,[1] Anne Kling, or David Irving. But I also think it is important we do not create our own echo chamber, but remain abreast of the insights and research of academia, so that we remain close to reality.

Mainstream academics’ work in the social sciences can of course be politicized, often atrociously so, but their work is also often of value (e.g. Brigitte Hamann’s Hitler’s Vienna, Mark Mazower’s Hitler’s Empire, Neagu Djuvara’s History of Romanians, etc.) if only because they have vast institutions and resources behind them to conduct research. In contrast, our humble work is far freer, but necessarily artisanal. (By the way, have you subscribed to The Occidental Quarterly or donated to The Occidental Observer recently? [Editorial Note: Great idea!])

Mainstream academic work in the social sciences however can be read most profitably only if one bears its limitations in mind. Typically, these are state-employed functionaries paid to teach ordinary people. As such, their expressed opinions are bound to be circumscribed by what the state and student body (or their parents) find tolerable. Furthermore, Judeo-American academia in particular has tended to be extremely left-wing and liberal. And since academic societies and reputations are international, European universities tend to follow the lead of their much more numerous and well-funded American counterparts. In short, these academics must (unless protected by tenure and particularly courageous), take care to at least appear politically-correct. Read more

The University as Hotbed of Anti-White Propaganda: A Student’s Perspective

The following is a general summation of the attitudes disseminated by my liberal professors in the History and English departments this past semester:

US and European history is negative and evil, but every other culture on the planet should be celebrated. Women are treated like children, and are without agency, free will, or much ability. Men are villains, barely able to conceal their “toxic” true selves. Biological differences between the sexes are socially constructed, and yet every transgender person must take hormones and have countless surgeries because they were “born” the opposite sex. Every culture is equal, but we must change everything about ours while other cultures are perfect as they are. Majority White nations must be made multicultural through unfettered immigration, without consent from their White majorities, but other nations have the right to preserve their identity, autonomy, and culture.

As a White male, I had the privilege (how dare I, let the public flagellation commence!) of taking a course at an American university this past semester, taught by a self-professed Marxist and feminist. The course was a “capstone course” in the history department, which implies that it was meant to be the culmination of all my prior collegiate education. The course was worth four credits, as opposed to the standard three, and an additional hour per week was allotted. However, the last few weeks of the course we rarely even met as a class, with the purported reason given, “so students could devote time to their projects.”

The course dealt with the history of alcohol in the United States. I was initially very excited for the potential course material. Between early settlers, Prohibition, wars, amazing literature, and civil rights, I anticipated an immense wealth of subject matter, to be addressed from a more alcohol-centric approach.

I should have known better. Read more

Moorish Spain: A Successful Multicultural Paradise? Part 2

Part 1.

It is more difficult to generalize about the situation of Jews in Moorish Spain. Visigothic law regarding the Jewish community was harsh, and designed to make it disappear eventually. Accordingly, as mentioned above, Spanish Jews formed an alliance of convenience with the Muslim invaders. Even after being reduced to dhimmi status, however, the position of Jews in early Moorish Spain (before the Almoravid invasion of 1085) was more favorable than it had been under the Christian Visigoths.

Some Muslim rulers found it convenient to employ Jewish officials since, unlike well-born Muslims, they remained entirely dependent on royal favor and were thus easy to control. Thus, a Jewish scholar named Hasdai (died c. 970), e.g., became the de facto foreign minister of Caliph Abd al-Rahman III, and was an active benefactor and protector of the Jewish community. Rabbi Samuel Ibn Naghrela (993–1056) became the most powerful Jew in the history of Moorish Spain as vizier to the ruler of Granada, earning the Hebrew title HaNagid (“The Prince”).

But such favored Jews were also resented by the Muslim population. It is recorded that Samuel Ibn Naghrela was regularly insulted by a Muslim merchant each time he rode through the gates of Grenada. His employer became the subject of a satirical poem:

He has chosen an infidel as his secretary
When he could, had he wished, have chosen a Believer.
Through him, the Jews have become great and proud
And arrogant—they, who were among the most abject.
And how many a worthy Muslim humbly obeys
The vilest ape among these miscreants?

Naghrela’s son Joseph, also a high-ranking official, was killed in the anti-Jewish riots which broke out in Granada in 1066. Read more

Moorish Spain: A Successful Multicultural Paradise? Part 1

Andalusian ParadiseThe Myth of the Andalusian Paradise:
Muslims, Christians, and Jews under Islamic Rule in Medieval Spain
by Dario Fernandez-Morera
Wilmington: ISI Books, 2016

Dario Fernandez-Morera, of Cuban extraction, is associate professor of Spanish and Portuguese at Northwestern University. He has previously published American Academia and the Survival of Marxist Ideas (1996), as well as numerous papers on the literature of Spain’s Golden Age.

In this new book he tackles one of the anti-European left’s most cherished delusions, viz., that al-Andalus, or Moorish Spain (711–1492 AD), was a successful multicultural society in which Christians, Jews and Muslims flourished together beneath the tolerant eye of enlightened Islamic rulers. These supposed halcyon days of Moorish tolerance are contrasted favorably with both the Visigothic Kingdom that preceded them and the Spain of the inquisition that followed.

So popular has the romantic image of enlightened Muslim Spain become that it has been publicly endorsed by such distinguished historical scholars as Barack Obama and Tony Blair. Indeed, according to Prof. David Levering Lewis, Europeans missed a golden opportunity by not going down to defeat at the Battle of Tours in 732 AD. If only Charles Martel’s Franks had succumbed, he writes,

the post-Roman Occident would probably have been incorporated into a cosmopolitan Muslim regnum unobstructed by borders … one devoid of a priestly caste, animated by the dogma of equality of the faithful, and respectful of all religious faiths.

In two-hundred-forty pages of exposition backed up by ninety-six closely printed pages of notes, Fernandez-Morera methodically demolishes this optimistic multicultural object lesson by means of copious references to the primary documents: writings by Muslims, Christians and Jews who actually lived under Islamic rule in Spain. The cumulative effect of the evidence he cites should be enough to prove to any unbiased observer that Moorish Spain, if no worse than other Muslim-controlled societies of its time, was also no better. Read more

Academic Censorship and Self-Censorship in Germany

Students at the University of Siegen, Germany

Students at the University of Siegen, Germany

“This is a subject that is very difficult for academics to discuss. In fact, I think academics steer way clear of this subject. I found in writing stories about the human genome, anything that touched on race, for example, just petrified the academics I would speak to. I thought it was very sad, that we would have intimidation in this country. So I thought there was an opportunity, maybe a duty to write this book and to break the ice and try to discuss some of these issues.”
Nicholas Wade in a discussion of his book, A Troublesome Inheritance in response to a question from Jason Richwine: “How confident were you that writing this book would not result in the loss of your livelihood?”

Sometimes bad news from the System can turn out to be good news for advocates of free speech. Especially when the System implicitly admits of having to backpedal on its own self-proclaimed canons of free speech, reject is its own much-lauded free academic inquiry, and resort instead to censorship and gagging orders. This was recently the case when I had been invited to give a lecture at the University of Siegen in Germany on the topic of the Der Untergang des Abendlandes, (“The Decline of the West).”

The invitation, as was to be expected, was promptly cancelled by the University Board of Directors. On May 13, 2014, the cancellation of the event was reported by the influential mainstream German daily Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ). Professor Jürgen Bellers, who had sent an invitation, is an old colleague of mine, a former visiting professor at Juniata College in Pennsylvania, where I taught in the early ‘90s as a full-time professor of political science. Read more

The Present—And Future—State of Higher Education in America

University professor as cause zealot, mind manager, and syntax mauler.

The public presentations as part of their candidacies by two finalists for a professorship at the University of Vermont:

Keon McGuire, Ph.D. candidate in the Graduate School of Education and African Studies at the University of Pennsylvania:  “Problematizing the Presistent Problematizing of Black Students in Postsecondary Education.”   “In this talk, I discuss methodological tools and theoretical frameworks that educational researchers could employ in order to move beyond studying Black students as problems and investigate new phenomena; namely the intersectionality of students’ racial, gendered and spiritual identities.”

Dr. Kelly Clark/Keefe, Associate Professor, Appalachian State University:  “Becoming Outsider, Becoming Educated, Becoming Undone: Towards an Interdisciplinary Justice-Oriented Perspective on College Student Identity Development.”  “Throughout the presentation, audience members will encounter my process of utilizing arts-based inquiry, inviting considerations that creative methods may help educational researchers to activate their commitment to social justice by carving out epistemic spaces for different ways of expressing unheard of or only partially effable truths.”

A third finalist for the professorship, Dr. Vijay Kanagala, Post-Doctoral Candidate, University of Texas, argues for the contribution he can make to a university setting in the Commission for Social Justice Educators Blog: “If not me, then who will counsel a recent immigrant about race and racism that was experienced at the supermarket or for that matter with an advisor or faculty member on campus?  If not me, then who will work with a White student to encourage the process of self-exploration of her/his identity, privilege, oppression and racism and the ensuing guilt that employs a non-judgmental model for that White student’s ignorance and lack of exposure to diverse issues?”

Felipe Fernandez-Armesto: Cosmic Goddess Explorer

filipeIn the egalitarian world of academia the deeds of great European men stand like an irritating thorn. Allowing university students (the majority of whom are now females) to learn that practically every great philosopher, scientist, architect, composer, or simply, everyone great, has been a male makes them uncomfortable. Academics feel even less comfortable, terrified even, at the thought of teaching their increasingly multiracial classrooms that these males are overwhelmingly European. While universities cannot ignore altogether the cultural achievements of Europeans, otherwise they would have little to teach — all the disciplines, after all, were created by Europeans — the emphasis tends to be on the evolution of “progressive” ideas framed as if they were universal ideals by and for humanity.  Egalitarians particularly enjoy teaching how these ideas have been improved upon, and continue to be, through the “critical thinking” of teachers and activists. Hail to the professors fighting for humanity’s liberation right inside their classrooms!

But it is not always easy to “critically” hide European greatness. It stands out in every subject of human endeavor. I would say that, when it comes to the teaching of history, academics have implemented four major discursive strategies to deal with this irksome issue in an age of egalitarian expectations. The first strategy, and possibly the most influential, is to argue that Europe’s history has to be seen in the context of “reciprocal connections” with the rest of the globe. The Greek classical world was part of a wider network of cultures within the Mediterranean Basin, predated and “fundamentally” shaped by the “foundational” civilizations of Mesopotamia and Egypt. Rome was both Western and Eastern. Christianity originated in the East. Medieval Europe borrowed its technology from China. “Without the Islamic Golden Age there would have been no Renaissance.” The Enlightenment was “the work of historical actors around the world”. Read more