State of the Academy: Science, society and critical thinking
Tonight’s forum will be all about the environment in which many of us spend their days: the academic world. We have invited two speakers to express their view on its current state. Are students and scholars still free to pursue their own interests? Is our independence threatened by government and business – or have academics themselves become their own enemy?
Trudy Dehue will advocate the need for a democratic and public science which goes beyond mere ‘academic freedom’. What does it mean and why is it important? Dehue is an Emeritus Professor of the Philosophy and History of Science at the University of Groningen. Her work has paid attention to the state of science in general and psychology in particular (with books such as Betere mensen and De depressie-epidemie).
Joanna Williams, author and educational theorist at the University of Kent, will discuss the rise of identity politics and what she calls “a culture of conformity” in Academia. In 2016, she published the book Academic Freedom in an Age of Conformity: Confronting the Fear of Knowledge. Here she describes how the spirit of university as a temple of knowledge and critique has lost value as mainstream ideas are enforced, dissenting voices are silenced and the value of truth-seeking is denied.
Join us for these lectures and a discussion about the future of the academic world! The event is free and open to everyone.