Intellectual diversity

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"The left may have won the curricular battle, but the right won the public-relations war," wrote Stanley Fish in the Chronicle of Higher Education. [1]

Utilizing diversity ideologies that have become a sort of academic rhetoric on college and university campuses, intellectual diversity portends to create a more "balanced" academic community.

The major advocate of intellectual diversity has been David Horowitz, president of the Center for the Study of Popular Culture and author of the Academic Bill of Rights. The "[bipartisan" bill states that "The central purposes of a University are the pursuit of truth, the discovery of new knowledge through scholarship and research, the study and reasoned criticism of intellectual and cultural traditions, the teaching and general development of students to help them become creative individuals and productive citizens of a pluralistic democracy, and the transmission of knowledge and learning to a society at large." [2] Horowitz authored the bill under Students for Academic Freedom, the conservative "student" organization he founded in 2003.

The intellectual diversity movement comes from overwhelming (yet unsurprising to anyone familiar with the world of academia) statistics that college faculty are disproportionately liberal. The fear is that conservatism is not being addressed and that students with conservative viewpoints are marginalized or even punished in the classroom, even when politics is not the part of the course curriculum.

The media coverage of intellectual diversity seemingly parallels the argument against that other paradigm of "liberal bias," the media itself. Both issues, trumpeted by the right, leave very little room for debate from the left as any evidence of a liberal argument synergistically "proves" the "unfair" slant. Intellectual diversity has been touted by many conservative front groups.

Advocacy Organizations

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