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Why Are Professors Liberals?

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Abstract

Recent research on the political attitudes of social scientists is reviewed indicating strong liberal bias and willingness to discriminate against professors with non-liberal attitudes. I argue that the liberal tilt of academia is the result of the rise of a cohort of Jewish academics in the 1960s whose political attitudes reflected mainstream attitudes within the Jewish com-munity but were well to the left of European-Americans in general. The academic world is hierarchical, with elite institutions able to dominate the image of ideal professors and sup-press or marginalize non-liberal views. Since the 1960s Jews have been strongly overrepre-sented among academics, especially in the social sciences and especially at elite institutions. The body of the paper shows that this transformation had the characteristics of successful in-tellectual movements pointed to by Gross and Fosse (2012): (1) those involved in the move-ment had a complaint (anti-Semitism, cultural exclusion); (2) they were able to form cohe-sive, effective networks; (3) they had access to the most prestigious academic institutions. (13) Why Are Professors Liberals?. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/321716607_Why_Are_Professors_Liberals [accessed Dec 10 2017].

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