Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Kevin Barrett

I don't know Kevin Barrett, but the situation is close enough to my professional location that I haven't felt comfortable commenting on it. However, as he has made Hannity and Colmes, I will echo Ann Althouse's comment that he is an adjunct lecturer and not a professor. This is the same rank I had when I taught my course on Middle Eastern history in Fall 2002, the semester after I passed prelims. In the Department of Languages and Cultures of Asia, he's probably sharing an office with several other people, much like a teaching assistant. Although there are a few semi-permanent lecturers on campus, this position is not one of them, and is merely a replacement for a faculty member who will be on sabbatical. Barrett has been around quite a while, and has become part of the landscape to the point where I doubt anyone considered hiring him that controversial.

I've also been told that Dr. Uli Schamiloglu, new Director of Middle East Studies, has gotten some e-mails about this. MES, which I worked for until June 30, has nothing to do with this class. As a program, it does not offer classes, though the confusion is understandable. Through its Title VI-A grant it provided some funding for summer Persian instruction and course development in other areas, but like I said, this is just an old class with a temporary replacement. As for Dr. Schamiloglu, while he is a liberal, the guy is balanced in everything he does. When Amotz Asa-El of the Jerusalem Post was here, his reaction was regret that his schedule wouldn't allow him to be a guest speaker in the "Introduction to the Middle East" class.

Another point, as long as I'm posting anyway, is that Barrett certainly seems to be enjoying the megaphone being provided him by the likes of Hannity and Colmes. I've also checked the timetable, and the Introduction to Islam course is badly under-enrolled. I hope it winds up still able to support two TA's, or some grad student is likely to lose funding over this.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home