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THE BLOG

How Marcuse made today’s students less tolerant than their parents

When Samuel Stouffer first wrote on political tolerance during the McCarthy era, he concluded that Americans were generally an intolerant bunch. Yet, finding that younger people were more tolerant than their parents, he also concluded that Americans would become more and more tolerant over time, due to generational replacement and increases in education. However, Stouffer did not predict the rise of the New Left, which I argue has reframed our collective notions about free expression, resulting in a significant decline in political tolerance among America’s youth. I develop this argument in a chapter I wrote for Stanley Rothman’s last book, The End of the Experiment, (Rothman, Nagai, Maranto, and Woessner, 2015) My findings are outlined below.

Political diversity in social psychology — Our response to 33 critiques

Our article on how greater political diversity will improve psychological science was published last week (Duarte et al., 2015, see summary here). The journal that published it (Behavioral and Brain Sciences) also solicits commentaries from other scholars on each “target article.” In our case BBS obtained 33 commentaries from scholars across a number of academic..

Education Dogma

Dogma is defined by Merriam-Webster as “a belief or set of beliefs that is accepted by the members of a group without being questioned or doubted.” Interestingly, the second definition provided by Merriam-Webster as “a belief or set of beliefs that is taught by a religious organization.” Of course these two different definitions are not meant to be read together but it as does seem that Merriam-Webster assumes that religious beliefs, and only religious beliefs, are accepted without question or doubt. It would not surprise me if the individuals constructing these definitions did accept the myth that dogma only occurs in a religious context. There is plenty of evidence on college campuses that show the incorrectness of that myth.

Here is a great example of what I term education dogma. Note that the students are chanting about not being silenced while they are obviously silencing the speaker. My understanding of this situation is that the speaker published something that challenges some of the assertions about a campus rape culture. Such a challenge is an affront to the dogma of the students. Therefore, these students do not feel that the speaker has a right to speak on a different topic. The violation of beliefs they accept without question or doubt creates their incentive to shut down the proceedings.

President Obama Endorses Heterodox Academy

President Obama strongly endorsed HeterodoxAcademy last week. OK, he didn’t mention our site specifically, but he endorsed our mission explicitly…. “there was this space where you could interact with people who didn’t agree with you and had different backgrounds that I then started testing my own assumptions. And sometimes I changed my mind.”