They’ve Never Listened To Us
I. Rohl
3510

"It was a terrible paper"

What grounds do you have for saying this? The paper was pretty solid. If you disagree, you must explain why — so far, nobody has.

"When I saw the open letter circulated, I was filled with admiration for and gratitude towards the authors"

It is widely acknowledged that the letter was defamatory. Of the four main arguments expressed in that letter, two were demonstrably false, and the rest were at best weak: for instance, the author was attacked for her identity, and was accused of not citing enough people with certain identities, which is a moot point. What matters is, did she cite relevant research? No specific relevant work was brought up. The author was also accused of "deadnaming" Caitlyn Jenner, whose celebrity status before and after transition are key to her public image and role in the social perception of transgender people. The author was accused of using offensive vocabulary in two instances, but in both cases this was taken out of context.

"to listen to our grievances, and to hear why so many of us feel this matters or find it hurtful"

Academics tried to listen, and we heard a lot of feelings and grievances, sure. But we didn't hear a single good argument. You claim she made mistakes; but you do not cite these mistakes, nor do you discuss them. Instead you talk about anger, rage, distress, and present an "us versus them" identity-politics discourse.

You claim to be an academic; and you very well might be, at least in title. But this is not academic discourse. This whole controversy was well below academic standards. To (progressive) people in many other fields, this has been a very frightening wake-up call: a sign that perhaps entire sub-fields of the humanities have become so political, have derived so far away from the basic ethos of academic research, that perhaps they no longer deserve to be called "academic research".

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.