December 1, 2012
Should Conservative Professors Come Out as Conservative?
Every week, in different forms -- some dismissive, others tactful -- the question above lands in my e-mail inbox. It comes from conservatives who wince at the thought of an untenured professor publishing right-wing opinions. There is a sincere concern underlying the question. It goes like this: the apotheosis of any academic's career is tenure, and until one has tenure, one should not tempt fate by alienating the overwhelmingly liberal power structure that decides promotion cases. Some commenters are earnest in saying "just teach your area of expertise." But for me, all roads lead to political controversy. I've done a great deal of research on the Revolutionary and Civil War generations. I specialize in American literature and have degrees in classics, literature, and political science. And more than any of that, I'm a writer by trade. My book is called The Colorful Conservative. In the classroom, I have always avoided anything approaching...(Read Full Article)