Monday, February 9, 2009

What price Academic Freedom

(The last two words are purposely capitalised!)

Do you believe in complete freedom in deciding how to teach a course? Do you find that following a 'written in stone' syllabus constraining and an assault on your freedom as an academic. Well, this might occasionally lead to some problems!


AmOK said...

OLO! Forget not the quote from your favourite writer: “Reasonable people adapt themselves to the world. Unreasonable people attempt to adapt the world to themselves. All progress, therefore, depends on unreasonable people.”

Note that this is not an if and only if condition. Being unreasonable does not always result in progress, does it? Most of the time the unreasonable people pay a price for the change. Check out some examples from births that took place Oct 2, 1869 and Dec 25, 0-.

Rahul Siddharthan said...

The guy is entitled to be an anarchist, but is a hypocrite to want to do it on a university salary.

Also, the other thing expected of a university professor is research (and this is where academic freedom is really important), and an outstanding researcher is often excused from teaching. But his record there seems rather average, at best. Academic freedom does not mean freedom not to work.

AmOK said...

Rahul, good point. He needs much more than a university salary to be a successful anarchist. One needs to be a Wall Street banker for that kind of effect.

Regarding his research -- I am sure it is A+. How can you rate it lower? It is not your job, as he explained, to rank his skills.