Response: Impact of CRT and campus climate

Pranav Jani
1 min readMar 29, 2022

Thanks for responding, though I would have to disagree, on two points especially.

First that there is a wave of intolerance and irrationality on campuses coming from the left. We can debate about specific instances and how significant they are (honestly, I would have to google the ones you have mentioned, since I hadn't heard of them) but this broader narrative obscures the way in which campuses, overwhelmingly, reproduce status-quo thinking that upholds current conditions. In fact, even DEI programs, when not linked to social justice, can participate in this. The rise of the campus right and its watchdog groups have had a chilling effect on higher education, and I speak from personal experience. Rather than being a period of some sort of left-wing ascendence, for many its a time of fear.

My second point is that the links between these rising clashes and critical theory is tenuous at best, as is the further link to K-12. Campuses have been the sites of political conflict for decades and decades. It's the larger context of politics - the rise of social movements and the conservative backlash - that is the motor. Theories etc, if they do come into play at all, are secondary. In the US, we are still recovering from the 2008 crisis that devastated so many. That breakdown, and peoples various responses to it, is really what the focus should be.

Pranav Jani

Assoc Prof, English, Ohio St (postcolonial/ethnic studies). Social justice organizer. Writer, speaker. Desi. Family guy. Singer. Wannabe cook. He/him. @redguju.