“Satan, be gone!”

This is the last post I wanted to write, but it has become clear that if I do not write it, I will never write anything else.

So here goes.

This time last year I was preparing my file to submit to my department in expectation of being promoted to full professor.

I probably don’t need to say any more, you can all check my title on the department web page now—go ahead, I’ll wait—although as one benefit, as part of the review process I did have to write statements about my research and teaching which I have posted on my academic home page as introductions to my method and goals.

I got the news—I kid you not—on Friday the 13th.

In April.

Seven months ago.

Since when, I have been living a lie. Or a half truth. Or...oh, fuck it, it sucks.

Because it is nonsense, of course. I deserve to be promoted to full professor.

I have published a second major monograph with a prestigious academic publisher (our standard in the department, barring an outside offer from another university) that has been …

Wheel of Sevens

A medieval device for training the soul in prayer.

This wheel contains seven rings, one depending on the other. Through the first the second is gained; through the second the third, and so with the others by reading between each pair of radii. 
The first ring of this wheel contains the seven petitions of the Lord’s prayer. The second ring contains the seven sacraments of the Church. The third ring contains the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. The fourth ring contains the seven spiritual weapons of the virtues. The fifth ring contains the seven corporeal and spiritual works of mercy. The sixth ring contains the seven principal virtues. The seventh ring contains the seven criminal vices.
Begin to read at the P and complete the readings that are contained between each two radii.
1. Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name. Here we pray to become sons of God the Father. Through this is given baptism in recognition of the Son of God. And the spirit of wisdom in reverence of the Trini…

Lies, Damn Lies, and the Washington Square News’ Use of Evidence

What do you do if you are a student or professor at one of the nation’s top universities faced with the prospect of a speaker coming to your campus to talk about the importance of costumes and why “cultural appropriation” is simply the way art works, and—assuming that you even know what he is going to be talking about—you panic because you have no way of countering his arguments with fact, logic, reason, or even the semblance of academic rigor?

Easy, if you are at NYU.

You call him names—“‘alt-right’ leader,” “white nationalist,” “white supremacist”— and you virtue signal about how hard it is to write about him, pointing to his “racism” and “anti-Semitism,” in proof of which you cite his marriage to a black man (Milo is white) and the fact that he has mentioned that his grandmother was Jewish. You insinuate that he is friends with a man known to hate him. You suggest on the basis of no evidence whatsoever that his public and privatecomments have put people in danger.

And—when all else …

An open letter to the faculty advisory board of the NYU student newspaper on the lies told about Milo Yiannopoulos in its reporting

Yvonne Latty, Clinical Professor of Journalism
Meredith Broussard, Assistant Professor of Journalism
Nanci Healy, Assistant Director of the Center for Student Life

Re: The recent coverage in the Washington Square News of Professor Michael Rectenwald’s invitation for Mr. Milo Yiannopoulos to speak to his class on Halloween

Dear Colleagues,

I read with interest the statement published today by the WSN Editorial Board on their coverage of Milo Yiannopoulos. I understand from the WSN statement of ethics that the students take sole responsibility for the editing of their work, but I am concerned that their statement contains a number of libels against Mr. Yiannopoulos presented as facts in support of their coverage. The student editors have also seen fit to run an opinion piece by Ms. Abby Hofstetter which contains an even larger number of libels. As someone who is well-acquainted with Mr. Yiannopoulos’s public statements, I write to draw your attention to these libels, in the hope that yo…

One Angry Judge

What would you do if during the course of a job interview you were accused of crimes so heinous that they would not only disqualify you for the position, but also land you in jail—justifiably, if you were guilty—for the rest of your life?

According to some 2,400 members of the American legal profession, including some of my own colleagues at the University of Chicago, Brett Kavanaugh is incapable of serving as an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court of the United States because he was “intemperate” when accused publicly not just of high school and college drunkenness, but of rape, gang-rape, and attempted rape.

In their words:
Judicial temperament is one of the most important qualities of a judge....   We are law professors who teach, research, and write about the judicial institutions of this country.... We regret that we feel compelled to write to you to provide our views that at the Senate hearings on Thursday, September 28 [sic*], 2018, the Honorable Brett Kavanaugh displayed a …

Mary and Martha, or What I Did in My Summer Vacation

It has been quite the summer.

First I learned how to search Twitter and discovered what my academic colleagues have really been saying about Milo and mefor the pastseveral years.

Then there was the takeover of the Kalamazoo Medieval Congress Facebook group by the SJWs.

Then there was Milo’s magnum opus about the controversy in my field.

Then there was getting to see Milo and my friends from Three Kraters in person.

There there were the invitations to appear on YouTube videos and podcasts.

Then there was the Open Letter that the National Association of Scholars wrote in my support—not to mention the thousand-plus signatures it has received.

Then there was the continuing pressure on the part of my academic colleagues for me to stay quiet.

Then there are all the arguments still to be made on the culture front.

A girl might be forgiven for finding it hard to settle down and—as Milo keeps telling me I shouldgetback to work!

Did I tell you he reminds me of Jesus?
Now it came to pass as they…

The Old Voice of Glad and Angry Faith

“to say nothing of all the stuff I do behind the scenes I can never tell you about.”  Not sure why you're defending the indefensible.  —JustJinxed, commenting on Three Kraters Symposium, Episode 58: Politicon Caves to Twitter Outrage and Pulls Milo from Lineup  I get this kind of comment a lot from my academic colleagues, even those who are otherwise sympathetic to me. They don’t know how much I am in contact with Milo or the kinds of things he and I have been talking about, and they tend to assume that Milo is as he has been portrayed in the mainstream media or by Buzzfeed: an agent provocateur, someone who is outrageous purely for material gain, a grifter, not a serious interlocutor, doing what he does for the sake of publicity and nothing else. How is it possible for me to defend such a person? Surely doing so, as one friend recently put it, is at odds with everything I am as an intellectual.
Well. My first response must be of course, “Have you read much of my blog?” But I kn…