Those who expect moments of change to be comfortable and free of conflict have not learned their history.

— Joan Wallach Scott

The most competitive Joan Wallach Scott quotes that are guaranted to improve your brain

We've increasingly lost that sense of community, of the notion that there is something we contribute to and benefit from that is called the common good. I think I would date the beginnings of that loss to the Reagan administration and to the notion that somehow we were all separate individuals who only ought to be interested in ourselves.

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We've increasingly lost that sense of community, of the notion that there is something we contribute to and benefit from that is called the common good.

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I think the anger that is being directed to universities and so-called elites at universities is actually an anger that's displaced from politicians (who promise to make things better and never do), from employers, it's an anger at the economic system that has put so many of these people out of the kind of work that once was so satisfying to them.

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I don't think colleges are safe spaces.

It's one thing to have a fraternity house or a community center where students can go and talk about their shared experiences. But it's another thing to have safe spaces in the sense that the university's providing them with protection from what they have to experience and find ways of protesting and resisting.

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The growing gap between rich and poor, the seeming lack of concern for the health and well-being of ordinary people, the obscene salaries made by CEOs who are increasing profits by moving their plants to places where labor is cheap - that's where the problem is, not in schools, colleges and universities.

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The Trump election brought it the fore and made it possible for a number of different groups whose aim is to stop the teaching of critical thinking to to launch direct attacks.

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All of my work in some way or another speaks to political issues according to the upbringing that I had, which was deeply rooted in principles.

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The university is the place where the pursuit of truth is taught, the rules for learning how to pursue it are explained, and students begin to understand how to evaluate the seriousness of truth. Those are incredibly important lessons, and only the teachers' academic freedom can protect them because there will always be people who disagree with or disapprove of the ideas they are trying to convey.

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The internet has made possible a frightening practice of threats and intimidation - threats of unspeakable violence and death.

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The common good is the notion of shared collective responsibility and reciprocity. It's that that we've lost.

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Richard Hofstadter, in his famous book which was written in the time of the McCarthy period in the 1950 and 1960s, Anti-intellectualism in American Life, talks about the deep hatred that some Americans had for what they consider to be elitist intellectual activity. I think that's what's happening now.

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The thing about education - and why I'm so passionate about the position and status of the university - is that it's supposed to teach citizens how to think better, how to think critically, how to tell truth from falsehood, how to make a judgment about when they're being lied to and duped and when they're not, how to evaluate scientific teaching. Losing that training of citizens is an extremely dangerous road to go down.

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About Joan Wallach Scott

Quotes 15 sayings
Profession Historian
Birthday December 18, 1941

Freedom of speech is about expressing your opinion, however bad or good, however right or wrong, and being able to defend it and argue it and be argued with about it in public forums. But that's not what academic freedom is about. That's not what the classroom is about.

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There's actually a wonderful quote from Stanley Fish, who is sometimes very polemical and with whom I don't always agree. He writes, "Freedom of speech is not an academic value. Accuracy of speech is an academic value; completeness of speech is an academic value; relevance of speech is an academic value. Each of these is directly related to the goal of academic inquiry: getting a matter of fact right."

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