Academics hobnob on Struggle Street

(Via Jack Balkin) The Chronicle of Higher Education has a feature on academic bloggers. It has a strongly American focus (being a US journal), but is well worth reading. A sample:

Mr. Balkin sees this openness and pluralism as a rebuke to the argument posited by Cass Sunstein, a professor of law at Chicago, in his 2001 book, Republic.com (Princeton University Press). “Cass’s view was that the Internet was going to become an increasingly closed-off set of ideological communities, and that people would become more extreme over time. His argument was based on his assessment of what the technology looked like around 2000. But one of the things about the Internet is that it is protean. Its architecture is constantly changing.” (Mr. Sunstein did not reply to an e-mail invitation to respond to Mr. Balkin’s comment.)

Others are less hopeful. Mr. Muller says that he perceives among academic bloggers “a talk-radioization of the discourse, which I’m not especially interested in participating in. It’s becoming very personality-driven, very combative, very adversarial. There’s a kind of ideological categorizing that goes on. … It really does start to feel like the Rush Limbaugh show.”

I don’t know how Muller could say such a thing. Academic bloggers are rational, polite and unfailingly, even rigorously intellectual to a fault. What an ignorant, patronising jerk!

About Ken Parish

Ken Parish is a legal academic, with research areas in public law (constitutional and administrative law), civil procedure and teaching & learning theory and practice. He has been a legal academic for almost 20 years. Before that he ran a legal practice in Darwin for 15 years and was a Member of the NT Legislative Assembly for almost 4 years in the early 1990s.
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Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2021 years ago

“It’s becoming very personality-driven, very combative, very adversarial. There’s a kind of ideological categorizing that goes on. … It really does start to feel like the Rush Limbaugh show.”

Sounds like your average faculty lunchroom to me….

cs
cs
2021 years ago

Harrumph!