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Academics Expose Corruption in ‘Grievance Studies’ by Getting Absurd Papers Published

Academics Expose Corruption in ‘Grievance Studies’ by Getting Absurd Papers Published

“What if we write a paper saying we should train men like we do dogs – to prevent rape culture?”

https://youtu.be/kVk9a5Jcd1k

This story is in one sense hilarious, yet horrifying at the same time. Three highly credentialed academics named Helen Pluckrose, James A. Lindsay, and Peter Boghossian set out to write absurd papers focused in areas like gender studies, women’s studies, and the like.

They submitted the papers to respected peer review journals and watched in astonishment as many of them were accepted and published.

They published their first-hand account of what happened in Areo Magazine:

Academic Grievance Studies and the Corruption of Scholarship

Part I: Introduction

Something has gone wrong in the university—especially in certain fields within the humanities. Scholarship based less upon finding truth and more upon attending to social grievances has become firmly established, if not fully dominant, within these fields, and their scholars increasingly bully students, administrators, and other departments into adhering to their worldview. This worldview is not scientific, and it is not rigorous. For many, this problem has been growing increasingly obvious, but strong evidence has been lacking. For this reason, the three of us just spent a year working inside the scholarship we see as an intrinsic part of this problem.

We spent that time writing academic papers and publishing them in respected peer-reviewed journals associated with fields of scholarship loosely known as “cultural studies” or “identity studies” (for example, gender studies) or “critical theory” because it is rooted in that postmodern brand of “theory” which arose in the late sixties. As a result of this work, we have come to call these fields “grievance studies” in shorthand because of their common goal of problematizing aspects of culture in minute detail in order to attempt diagnoses of power imbalances and oppression rooted in identity.

We undertook this project to study, understand, and expose the reality of grievance studies, which is corrupting academic research. Because open, good-faith conversation around topics of identity such as gender, race, and sexuality (and the scholarship that works with them) is nearly impossible, our aim has been to reboot these conversations. We hope this will give people—especially those who believe in liberalism, progress, modernity, open inquiry, and social justice—a clear reason to look at the identitarian madness coming out of the academic and activist left and say, “No, I will not go along with that. You do not speak for me.”

The examples of the work they submitted is beyond belief. You really have to wonder how the people reviewing the work took it seriously:

What if we write a paper saying we should train men like we do dogs—to prevent rape culture? Hence came the “Dog Park” paper. What if we write a paper claiming that when a guy privately masturbates while thinking about a woman (without her consent—in fact, without her ever finding out about it) that he’s committing sexual violence against her? That gave us the “Masturbation” paper.

What if we argue that the reason superintelligent AI is potentially dangerous is because it is being programmed to be masculinist and imperialist using Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and Lacanian psychoanalysis? That’s our “Feminist AI” paper. What if we argued that “a fat body is a legitimately built body” as a foundation for introducing a category for fat bodybuilding into the sport of professional bodybuilding? You can read how that went in Fat Studies.

Some of the examples are downright shocking:

Another tough one for us was, “I wonder if they’d publish a feminist rewrite of a chapter from Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf.” The answer to that question also turns out to be “yes,” given that the feminist social work journal Affilia has just accepted it.

Of the 20 papers they submitted, 7 have been accepted. Read the entire report here.

Yascha Mounk, a lecturer at Harvard has posted some fascinating details on Twitter:

This video is 16 minutes long and describes how the group got started:

This much shorter video covers the results. If you’re looking for a brief overview, watch this:

This report coincides with a point I have been making lately on Twitter about the way left wing concepts have quickly made their way from college campuses into media and politics.

The authors of this study deserve praise for exposing this madness. Most members of the general public have no idea how far to the extreme left higher education has drifted in recent decades. If they did, the argument over “free” college would not even be happening.

Featured image via YouTube.

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Comments

Dear Forum,

I attend a small midwestern university, and I never thought that this would happen to me…

It just confirms what we already knew was going on. And thanks to the left, everything has become a political wedge.

The left publishes this nonsense and then they cite it as research supporting their other nonsense.

    TX-rifraph in reply to TX-rifraph. | October 4, 2018 at 11:31 am

    I thank these academics for documenting these practices. I hope it starts us on a road back to legitimate academic work and an end to these “studies” departments.

      txvet2 in reply to TX-rifraph. | October 4, 2018 at 11:40 am

      Sadly, that’s unlikely. Like most news that contradicts the leftist narrative, this will never make general circulation and will be forgotten in a month, if not a week.

    1A_Rules in reply to TX-rifraph. | October 4, 2018 at 12:07 pm

    I’ve been saying for a while that the college campus is the looking glass into how progressives want the country to be. The primary goal of higher education now has nothing to do with enlightenment and knowledge. It is primarily about creating a just society only as defined by progressives. To call any of the social fields a science is a joke. They are purely about activism and defining the accepted views. The effort has started to make a mockery of general science and technology, too.
    The practice of citing research isn’t just limited to the Dems. The media runs with it all the time too.

ScottTheEngineer | October 4, 2018 at 11:30 am

Dear Forum,

I attend a small midwestern university, and I never thought that this would happen to me…” that’s one of my favorite movies.

casualobserver | October 4, 2018 at 12:11 pm

And the surprise is? The way social “science” (LOL) works is this: publications have a template. The put the template beside a submitted paper. Does it fit the template a sound academic or researchy? PUBLISH! Even checking the rigor of the methods is bypassed for the most part. Acceptance into journals is mostly about fitting the template of ideas and meeting composition/grammar/white paper structure.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to casualobserver. | October 5, 2018 at 10:04 am

    “white paper”

    I am surprised that there are no demands to change this to the brown paper structure, after all, there have been demands that Ebonics be elevated to mainstream status.

None of this is surprising. Look to the late Middle Ages and the Roman Catholic Church.

The power of the Roman Catholic Church, in the Middle Ages, was built entirely upon the idea that only the Church could interpret the workings of the universe. This worked fine as long as there was no competing doctrine for analysis. Then came the rise of empirical science. It offered an explanation for universal events based upon observation and experimentation which resulted in recurring, verifiable events to allow for a rational explanation for universal conditions to be formulated. It should be noted that none of the scientific theories actually undermined Christian theological doctrines. But, Science undermined the secular power of the Church.

Fast forward to the late 20th Century. Groups of people want to gain power within a society which is based, largely, upon empirical science. They attempt to do this through the introduction of social theories which have no scientific basis. Through a combination of propaganda, the supplanting of scientific minds in academia and fellow travelers in government, these people gain power through the normalization of social theories which are entirely faith based. And, to maintain this power, scientific inquiry has to be denigrated and ignored. Much of academia becomes nothing more than a faith-based cult which attempts to maintain power by accepting and propagating any theory which benefits them, no matter how ridiculous. We are then treated to the academic equivalent of the Spanish Inquisition.

“Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition” M Python

I seem to remember the Postmodernist Generator getting a paper at one time too. (Link generates a new post-modernist pseudopaper every time it is refreshed)

http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/

NYU Physics Professor Alan Sokal had a *wonderful* gibberish article on the social implications of quantum gravity posted in 1996

http://www.physics.nyu.edu/faculty/sokal/noretta.html

I seem to remember the Postmodernist Generator getting a paper at one time too. (Link generates a new post-modernist pseudopaper every time it is refreshed)

http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/

NYU Physics Professor Alan Sokal had a *wonderful* gibberish article on the social implications of quantum gravity posted in 1996, which can be found on the Pomo link above.

(It seems attaching two links causes the comment to be flushed? Redid comment with only one link)

How dare you illustrate this story with a photograph of….(wait for it)…..a white male!

It’s good that people are starting to notice the connection between academic leftism and wider societal rot, but the harder part comes next: what do we do about it?

I think there’s already international precedent for governments simply prohibiting certain topics at university. I know we could also defund university in general by refusing to guarantee student debt.

There have been too many students at university for decades now, and the oversupply has contributed mightily to eroding standards. On top of that, a college degree is often not needed for many jobs and more companies are coming to that conclusion.

Repeal of Griggs v. Duke Power would also go a long way towards dismantling Big Education.

I seem to remember the Postmodernist Generator getting a paper at one time too. (Link generates a new post-modernist pseudopaper every time it is refreshed)

NYU Physics Professor Alan Sokal had a *wonderful* gibberish article on the social implications of quantum gravity posted in 1996, which can be found on the Pomo link

http://www.elsewhere.org/journal/pomo/

(Hm, my comments are getting eaten. Wonder what keywords I’m using)

I was a research chemist and for years I published my work in peer reviewed research journals. There was a reason why most scientists in the hard sciences looked down at the so called academic work being published by those in the soft sciences. Even worse are those papers in education.
>
Over the years I have watched as the quality of the typical research paper decline while the quantity of those papers increase. There is a reason why a huge number of papers cannot be replicated and there is a reason why the ones with by far and away the worst replication rates are in the soft sciences. Those reasons should now be obvious.
>
There are many, however, that believe the hard sciences are immune from this kind of intellectual corruption and they are wrong. All one has to do is read any of those papers supporting catastrophic anthropogenic global warming and it becomes abundantly clear how the Left and their political demands have overtaken all aspects of education and research in this country.
>
As a side note, the louder one screams about how right their work is and the more resistant one is to listening to criticisms about their research, the more reason there is to worry about the credibility of their work. Likewise, the more one demands to be called “doctor” or “professor”, the more likely it is that they are incompetent.

I could hang out with these guys.

From now on we will all be considered guilty until we prove that we’re not!

Goodbye America, land of the free!

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