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posted by LaminatorX on Monday May 19 2014, @06:24AM   Printer-friendly

Raw Story summarizes a New York Times report that Colleges across the country this spring have been wrestling with student requests for what are known as "trigger warnings," explicit alerts that the material they are about to read or see in a classroom might upset them or, as some students assert, cause symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder in victims of rape or in war veterans.

The debate has left many academics fuming, saying that professors should be trusted to use common sense and that being provocative is part of their mandate. Trigger warnings, they say, suggest a certain fragility of mind that higher learning is meant to challenge, not embrace. "Any kind of blanket trigger policy is inimical to academic freedom," said Lisa Hajjar, a sociology professor, who often uses graphic depictions of torture in her courses about war. "Any student can request some sort of individual accommodation, but to say we need some kind of one-size-fits-all approach is totally wrong. The presumption there is that students should not be forced to deal with something that makes them uncomfortable is absurd or even dangerous."

Greg Lukianoff, president of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, said, "It is only going to get harder to teach people that there is a real important and serious value to being offended. Part of that is talking about deadly serious and uncomfortable subjects."

A summary of the College Literature, along with the appropriate trigger warnings, assumed or suggested in the article is as follows: Shakespeare's "The Merchant of Venice" (anti-Semitism), Virginia Woolf's "Mrs. Dalloway" (suicide), "The Great Gatsby" (misogynistic violence), and "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" (racism).

Note: The Raw Story link was provided to provide an alternative to the article source, the New York Times, due to user complaints about the NYT website paywalling their articles.

 
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  • (Score: 1, Troll) by Maow on Monday May 19 2014, @07:32AM

    by Maow (8) on Monday May 19 2014, @07:32AM (#45119) Homepage

    I agree with your first paragraph.

    Putting on my fireproof underwear for a moment, I will hazard a guess that this initiative comes from the same cuckoo segment of the population who feel they are 'victims' for all manner of sundry things that the rest of us would consider no big deal, and who fall all over themselves to brand about half of the populace as deviant predatory abusers. You know who I'm talking about.

    Would that be the cuckoo segment that's in academia and feel slighted if everyone, everywhere, doesn't go out of their way to accommodate everyone, all the time? i.e. lefties in academia?

    Or would that be the conservatives, always on the attack, always slagging others as professional victims, but once called out on their own bad behaviour, instantly embrace shrill victimhood? i.e. Rob Ford of Toronto, Stephan Harper (Ottawa), or innumerable other examples?

    I guess if we say the "cuckoo segment" are aka "the political fringes" then ... it's settled.

    If you disagree, then obviously YOU'RE REPRESSING ME LIKE A NAZI WOULD!!1!

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  • (Score: 2, Informative) by Oligonicella on Monday May 19 2014, @12:12PM

    by Oligonicella (4169) on Monday May 19 2014, @12:12PM (#45177)

    "Would that be the cuckoo segment that's in academia and feel slighted if everyone, everywhere, doesn't go out of their way to accommodate everyone, all the time? i.e. lefties in academia?"

    Yes, yes it would be. One simply need read the names and affiliations of those demanding these strictures to see this.

    • (Score: 2) by Maow on Tuesday May 20 2014, @10:38AM

      by Maow (8) on Tuesday May 20 2014, @10:38AM (#45551) Homepage

      "Would that be the cuckoo segment that's in academia and feel slighted if everyone, everywhere, doesn't go out of their way to accommodate everyone, all the time? i.e. lefties in academia?"

      Yes, yes it would be. One simply need read the names and affiliations of those demanding these strictures to see this.

      Yes, way to miss the point.

      There is more than one "cuckoo segment" of society that's perpetually offended / victimized. They exist on both sides of the political spectrum.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @04:44PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 19 2014, @04:44PM (#45282)

    Would that be the cuckoo segment that's in academia and feel slighted if everyone, everywhere, doesn't go out of their way to accommodate everyone, all the time? i.e. lefties in academia?

    Or would that be the conservatives, always on the attack, always slagging others as professional victims, but once called out on their own bad behaviour, instantly embrace shrill victimhood? i.e. Rob Ford of Toronto, Stephan Harper (Ottawa), or innumerable other examples?

    Yes.