AAUP@FHSU


Teaching the truth about race

As fall terms get underway on campuses, so too do state legislative campaigns seeking to restrict teaching about the history of race and racism in the United States. Three states have already pre-filed bills for the 2022 legislative season, and several more have active legislation that will carry over from the 2021 session.

The bills are a naked attempt to manipulate curricula to advance partisan or ideological aims. Many attack the scholarly field of critical race theory, but their purpose is much broader: to suppress teaching and learning about racism.

We’d like to know if and how these bills, or related attempts to chill the free exchange of facts and ideas about American history, have affected you. Please let us know by taking this brief survey.

The AAUP is working to protect faculty’s ability to teach the truth about American history, and to further racial justice in higher education and in our own organization. Here are some resources and initiatives we’d like members to know about:

More information about the wave of legislation seeking to suppress teaching about race is here. Other resources about racial justice are here.

In solidarity,

Glinda Rawls

Chair, AAUP Racial Justice Committee


In Depth: Academe Tackles Targeted Harassment

The latest issue of Academe magazine comes at a timely moment, as it takes an in-depth look at the right-wing assault on academia. The issue includes a series of articles that specifically examine the targeted harassment of faculty.

A profile of the AAUP chapter at Trinity College in Connecticut offers insight into how the newly formed chapter mobilized over the summer on behalf of Professor Johnny Williams after he was attacked on social media and subsequently suspended by the school’s administration. A group of sixty colleagues demanded that the administration rescind its decision, and the chapter’s executive committee issued a statement of support for Williams, citing concerns about academic freedom, due process, and the stifling of “critical engagement with issues of race.” Read more here.

A feature article by Joshua A. Cuevas of the University of North Georgia documents how he was targeted by white supremacists waging a cultural war on what they perceive as the left-wing, intellectual elite. He details the waves of attacks he personally endured as a victim of targeted harassment and argues, “Academia has been too timid in countering such movements. We should not have to speak in hushed tones when we condemn hate groups. We should not have to be apprehensive when we promote democratic ideals and equality.” Read the full piece here.

If you’re interested in Friday’s Facebook Live conversation with Joan Wallach Scott and Hank Reichman, check out an interview Scott gave to Bill Moyers this past fall. Scott says that while attacks on academics are not new, the Trump election empowered a number of different groups whose aim is to stop the teaching of critical thinking. Check out the interview here.

In a final article of interest, Anita Levy, a senior program officer in the AAUP’s Department of Academic Freedom, Tenure, and Governance, provides summaries of several reports of harassment that the AAUP received after asking faculty last year to share their experiences. She notes that in many cases, the triggering event that led to the harassment occurred in the course of faculty members’ normal academic duties as teachers, researchers, or concerned citizen-scholars addressing the public. Read more here.

We’d still like to hear from you—share your stories or thoughts on targeted harassment using the hashtag #FacultyUnderAttack and we’ll post selections on our social media feeds. And remember to join us on Friday for the Facebook Live conversation on targeted harassment. To read all these articles and to see all our resources for the week, check out our page on One Faculty, One Resistance.

The AAUP


Member resources from the AAUP

As we head into the fall term, I’m writing to make sure you know about resources that are available to you as an AAUP member. (Many require your website login. Forgot your password?)

Each semester, we offer webinars about topics of interest to faculty, ranging from the nuts and bolts of what should be in a faculty handbook to threats to academic freedom in the Trump era. You can watch recordings of past webinars here. Our first webinar of the fall semester will focus on digital organizing/issue organizing, and we’ll send you an e-mail when the date is set.

In response to political events in the past year, we have developed FAQs on the following topics:

We also offer informational resources on a variety of topics of interest to faculty and other academic professionals:

Members receive a subscription to Academe Magazine; this will be delivered to you electronically or you can opt in to the print edition.

We also offer insurance programs, described here.

Best wishes,
Gwendolyn Bradley
AAUP External Relations Director