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Forum 45:

Impolitic Politics: Free Speech, Censorship, and Civility on Campus in the Age of Trump

Held Thursday, November 14, 2019

Forum Summary

From immigration restriction and gun control to the Mueller investigation and the Kavanaugh hearing, our era has witnessed possibly unprecedented levels of political polarization and recrimination. On our airwaves and the Internet, especially, Americans shout past each other in a 24/7 deluge of snark and invective. That creates new challenges for our universities, which are supposed to expand our knowledge of the world and also teach the skills and virtues of democratic citizenship: reason, tolerance, and informed participation. However, Professor Zimmerman argues, many of our campuses have not stepped up to this task. Instead, they have echoed or even exacerbated the polarized tenor of our moment. This talk will critique the spirit of contemporary campus politics and also provide suggestions for improving it.

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