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THE BLOG

Research Summary: Race and the Race for the White House: On Social Research in the Age of Trump

Al-Gharbi argues that when research disparages Trump and his supporters on weak evidentiary grounds, the credibility and viability of the broader social research enterprise is called into question as well. Many on the right already view the humanities and social sciences as essentially “partisan propaganda,” he reminds,  and have called for defunding social research on these grounds. It is therefore imperative that research about these already-skeptical constituents be as fair-minded and rigorous as possible. 

The Skeptics Are Wrong Part 2: Speech Culture on Campus is Changing

In this essay we show that the skeptics went wrong by basing their case primarily on GSS data about members of the Millennial generation. We explain why the debate hinges not on Millennials but on the generation after them––iGen, or Gen Z, who began replacing Millennials in college in 2013. We draw on a variety of datasets to show that iGen is different, and that there is indeed reason for concern that things are changing on campus. We address three questions: 1) Is the speech climate (i.e., willingness to speak up) worsening on college campuses, overall, in recent years? We show that it is. 2) Is there a “politically correct” range of viewpoints on campus? We show that there is. 3) Which side of the spectrum is more willing to use illiberal tactics? We show that left and right used to be similar, before 2015, in their desire to “disinvite” speakers, but since 2015 the right has used that tactic much less often while the left has used it much more often, and has also conducted all of the shout-downs that have occurred since 2015.  In conclusion, the skeptics are wrong.

HxA Publishes New Book: All Minus One

Heterodox Academy (HxA), a collaborative association comprised of more than 1,800 professors and graduate student affiliates, has released All Minus One, an illustrated version of Chapter 2 of On Liberty, the seminal 19th-century work by philosopher John Stuart Mill, which stressed the value of personal choice, liberty, free speech, and viewpoint diversity.

HxA Weekly Member Bulletin: April 10

The students at Howard see power and want more of it. “This entire protest is dictated not by the resignation of the president,” McCollum says, “but by the ideal of student power, and letting students have a bigger voice on their university’s campus.” What’s striking—as other campuses may soon find—is not what they are asking for, but their commitment to getting it.

Research Summary: That’s Not Funny: Instrument Validation of the Concern for Political Correctness Scale

The research summarized below by Strauts and Blanton (2015), documents the development of their concern for political correctness scale, as well as two studies validating the predictive utility of that scale.  Briefly, Strauts and Blanton (2015) reported that their concern for political correctness measure consists of two factors, an emotion factor (which measures the likelihood of experiencing a negative emotional response after hearing politically incorrect language) and an activism factor (which measures a willingness to correct others who use politically incorrect language).