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The End of Academic Freedom: The Coming Obliteration of the Core Purpose of the University
Scholarship Collection
  • William M. Bowen, Cleveland State University
  • Michael Schwartz, Cleveland State University
  • Lisa Camp, Case Western Reserve University
"This book is premised upon the assumption that the core purpose of universities is to create, preserve, transmit, validate, and find new applications for knowledge. It is written in the perspective of critical university studies, in which university governance processes should take ideas and discourse about ideas seriously, far more seriously than they are often taken within many of today's universities, since doing so is the key to achieving this purpose. Specifically, we assert that the best way for universities to take ideas seriously, and so to best achieve their purpose, is to consciously recognize and conserve the entire range of available ideas. Though the current emphasis upon factors such as student headcounts, increased efficiency and job creation are undoubtedly important, far more is at stake in universities than only these factors. From this premise, we deduce insights and arguments about factors such as academic freedom, control and monitoring of the market place of ideas, the structure of information flows within universities, the role of language in university governance, and relationships between administrators, faculty members and students. We identify impediments to achieving the core purpose of universities, including the idea vetting systems of authoritarianism, corporatism, illiberalism, supernaturalism and political correctness. We elucidate how these impediments inhibit successful achievement of the core purpose of the university. In response to these impediments we prescribe autonomous universities characterized by openness, transparency, and the maintenance of balance between conflicting perspectives, values, and interests."
ISBN-13 978-1-936323-03-6 ISBN-10 1-936323-03-6
Publication Date
MSL Academic Endeavors
  • core purpose of universities,
  • autonomous universities,
  • academic freedom,
  • American Higher Education
Citation Information
William M. Bowen, Michael Schwartz and Lisa Camp. The End of Academic Freedom: The Coming Obliteration of the Core Purpose of the University. Cleveland(2013)
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