Category Archives: academics

Tanya Luhrmann and the decline of the New York Times

As newspapers throughout the U.S. go belly up, there are only a few—actually one—that still represent high-quality journalism. And that one is The New York Times. Yes, it is still the go-to paper if you want substance and intellectual viands, but it seems to me to be on the decline as well. The science pages […]

King’s College London comes to its senses, deep-sixes postgraduate theology curriculum

What a good feeling it is to see a university get rid of its theology courses! Religious history or comparative religion is fine; theology, not so much. If you want to teach about the properties of nonexistent objects, do it in a private divinity school or seminary. There’s simply no excuse for a public university […]

The 50 Smartest “People of faith”?

The Best Schools website, which I think is fairly well known for telling people where to study in a given area, has produced a list and description of “The 50 smartest people of faith.” And it’s dire. I’m not sure whether they simply haven’t looked hard enough to find smart religious people (they choose folks who […]

Only in Alabama

Well, maybe in Mississippi, too. The Washington Post reports an unusual agreement between a college in Alabama and its new president: Gwendolyn Boyd, the new president of Alabama State University, signed a contract with the school’s trustees that forbids her from allowing a lover to “cohabitate” with her in the presidential home being provided to […]

So long, and no thanks for all the Fish

Stanley Fish has written his last “Opinionator” column for the New York Times, and I can’t say I’m sorry to see him go.  His writing was dreadful (and he’s an English professor!), his opinions cranky and quirky (see here, for instance). He was the intellectual equivalent of the old man who yells, “Hey, kids! Get […]

American universities reject ridiculous call to boycott Israeli universities

The American Studies Association (ASA), a group promoting the university study of American culture, voted on December 4 to endorse an academic boycott of Israeli universities. You can see their statement here, which cites the Israeli “oppression” of Palestine (supported, as the resolution says, by the U.S.), as a reason for academics to boycott Israeli […]

More press on the Hedin affair

UPDATE: The Christian Post piece is up, and appears pretty objective: “Ball State University denounced intelligent design, keeps professor accused of ID bias.“ ____________ I am a bit surprised that the national press is paying attention to HedinGate, but I suppose it’s expected since a university president issued such a strong statement against the teaching […]

Muncie newspaper calls for full disclosure of Hedin investigation

Now, along with the Discovery Institute and the Freedom from Religion Foundation—strange bedfellows indeed—the Muncie Star-Press has called for the Ball State University committee investigating Eric Hedin to disclose their report, or at least a summary of it. Here’s yesterday’s editorial, “Findings in report should be made public“, in full: Did he or didn’t he? […]

Ball State University seals records of review panel on Eric Hedin (and bonus anti-ID letter)

A piece in today’s Muncie Star-Press reports that Ball State University (BSU) has turned down freedom-of-information requests to release the report of the professorial panel investigating Eric Hedin’s teaching of intelligent design (ID) and Christianity in his science class.  Here’s the official refusal of the Star-Press‘s request: I suspect the Freedom from Religion Foundation (FFRF) […]

Ball State panel finishes investigation of Eric Hedin, refuses to divulge results

I am informed by the Freedom from Religion Foundation (FFRF) that the five-professor panel empowered to investigate Professor Eric Hedin’s proselytizing for Christianity and intelligent design creationism in one of his physics classes has finished its investigation. After the FFRF sent a letter to every member of the panel detailing the case about Hedin (including […]


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