What Concept is Academia Pushing the Most? Here's What YAF's New Study Found.
A recent survey conducted by the Young America’s Foundation found that collectivism is the most broadly promoted theme throughout courses at America’s highest ranked colleges and universities.
The survey, titled "Comedy & Tragedy," reviewed course descriptions from online course catalogs for 2016-2017 for each school in the Southeastern Conference, the Ivy League, US News & World Report’s Top 10 Liberal Arts Colleges, the Big 10 Conference, and the Big East Conference. The courses range broadly on identity topics from sex, race, class, and gender, according to the report.
For example, the political science department at the University of Arkansas provided a course listing which seems to politically divide the country into identity groups with course names like “Latino Politics,” “Southern Politics,” “Gender and Politics,” and “African American Political Ideology.” Other classes take into account sexual orientation and self-identification. A class at Vanderbilt University teaches about “Global Anti-Blackness and Black Power,” while a class at DePaul University teaches about “The Power of Whiteness.”
Religion courses at Swarthmore heavily focus on the Bible with courses like “Queering God: Feminist and Queer Theology,” “Queering the Bible,” “Rape, Slavery, and Genocide in Bible and Culture,” and “Sex, Gender, and the Bible.” The focus seems to be on stretching identity politics into broader topics where they usually do not seem relevant.
One Swarthmore course ponders the question of God’s “sexuality” and explores whether God’s ability to display both masculine and feminine qualities could mean He is transgender.
"The God of the Bible and later Jewish and Christian literature is distinctively masculine, definitely male," the course description for Religion 032 reads. "Or is He? If we can point out places in traditional writings where God is nurturing, forgiving, and loving, does that mean that God is feminine, or female? This course examines feminist and queer writings about God, explores the tensions between feminist and queer theology, and seeks to stretch the limits of gendering-and sexing-the divine."
YAF describes the manifestation of such politics into American ivy league courses as a “monumental distraction and a tragic waste of talent.”
"Rather than focusing on the study of humans as capable individuals, academics go out of their way to corral people into specific categories based on identity," the survey’s summary reads. As displayed above, the courses seem to heavily value identity over ideology and schools of thought, creating further divisions between represented subgroups. Worse, the survey reports, the one ideology that is identified in these courses is heavily demonized: conservatism.
"“Students aren’t only spending their time in hilariously weird courses—they’re sitting through hours of courses that tactlessly group members of our society into collective entities, stripping them of their individuality and blaming conservatism for their ills," it reads.
In an email to The Daily Wire, YAF spokesperson Emily Jashinsky said these courses are reflections of the talent being tragically wasted in some of America's brightest students.
"Higher education is not adequately preparing them to solve the problems our country is facing and it’s charging them more and more money for a lower quality product," Jashinsky said. "YAF’s Comedy & Tragedy survey is a painful reminder of the academic Left’s increasingly firm stranglehold on our leading institutions of higher learning."
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