illustration (depicting mouthsoaping?) by David Scher

I recently wrote an essay for Arc Digital about agreeableness, “Self-Censorship in the Academy.” What follows is a short postscript, mainly about cowardice.

I was blacklisted by Chicago Review, a prestigious literary journal edited by graduate students at the University of Chicago. Last year, in November, one of the editors sent me a note to solicit an essay for a feature in an upcoming issue. Then, in January, the entire editorial staff wrote to say that they were withdrawing their invitation, and that they could not publish any of my writing because they did not want to be associated with…

Two cheers for inclusivity


The strongest case against academic freedom is that professors are not a freedom-loving people. H. L. Mencken made this argument a century ago. Professors show by their choices that they do not love thinking and speaking freely. They have gone into the business of education, a civilizing business where they manufacture “citizens who are as nearly like all other citizens as possible.”

Mencken had a point. Professors (I am one of them) are mainly selected from the category of people who got good grades in school. Let us hope that our grades are a mark of our intelligence, our excellent…

Aaron Kunin

Poet, critic, associate professor of English at Pomona College, author of LOVE THREE: A STUDY OF A POEM BY GEORGE HERBERT and several other books.

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