Anita Cohen-Williams comment on gender bias in Anthropology

Dr. John D. OBrien (bd040@YFN.YSU.EDU)
Thu, 6 Apr 1995 22:24:29 -0400

A comment on Anita Cohen-Williams' post regarding gender bias in
Anthropology departments . . . I would like to suggest that we use
the post to open a discussion on the viability of Affirmative Action
mentality and policy in the hiring of academics: IS IT JUSTIFIABLE or

Speaking of Sacred Cows . . . I'm curious to see what the response on
this issue will be among anthro's of all genders . . . since the current
`sacred cow' is that females are discriminated against (thus AA is justified
in excluding MAWM's from earning a living in their chosen profession). Anita's
post seems to indicate that exactly the opposite is true: that current `
political correctness' positions are making `feminists (both male and female)
and other `. . . ists' and `. . . isms' the true repressive and discriminatory
force in academa.

Sorry (academia) . . . .

For one, I agree with Anita . . . and for another, I think it would behove
most of us to read Adam Kuper's recent article on American Anthropology and
post-modernism in Man.

John O'Brien
Youngstown, Ohio

PS . . . don't feel bad Anita, nor should your husband . . . my last straw
came when the dept. that I taught for for six years, spent $50,000.oo dollars
plus interest on to finish a Ph.D, and had personal friends with . . . refused
me an interview because QUOTE UNQUOTE FROM A FACULTY MEMBER . . . they had
to hire a woman in the position . . . I could have lived with that, but my
mother nearly died two years later while I was unemployed and unable to
even afford to return home to visit. Personally, . . . as on older JFK style
liberal who fought more than one battle on behalf of opening the discipline
to fairness in gender hiring . . . the contemporary group of politically
correct academics have offended me beyond my ever extending support to thieir
[sorry - their] present positions, causes or more importantly `actions.'


The second question posed to the net . . . is `perhaps' the contemporary
political correctness (particularly in hiring in academia) one of the major,
if not the major, reason that the American public appears to be becoming more
and more antiintellectual and anti-academia - to the point of withdrawing
support financially. ????? My opinion is that it is.