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March 29, 1994 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1994-03-29

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, March 29, 1994

Ule Libigatn &dlg

'All he wanted to do was bring in his porn research buddies.'
-Communication Prof Richard Campbell, speaking about the
recently departed chair of the communication department, Neil
Malamuth

Late

420 Maynard
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Edited and managed
by students at the
University of Michigan

JEssiE HALLADAY
Editor in Chief
SAM GOoDsTIN
FLINr WAINESS
Editorial Page Editors

Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of a majority of the Daily's editorial board.
All other articles, letters, and cartoons do not necesarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
'8!
Purging, with tenure
Tenure is a gift. Therefore, according to tion department, only to later be denied at
the logic of the University, public records the College level. These professors, accord-
need not be kept about who is denied tenure. ing to Associate Dean for Academic Ap-
Moreover, goes the same line of reasoning, if pointments Richard Chamberlain, fulfilled
the University, say, wants to break up the two of the three requirements for receiving
Communication department, isn't it counter- tenure: solid records in teaching and com-
productive to give tenure to any professor not munity service. Chamberlain says that the
in line with this mission? The answer is yes, reason they were denied tenure was because
but there are two questions that must follow: their scholarship didn't adequately advance
first, isthe University's reasoning forwanting theory. But most Communication depart-
to break up the Communication department ment professors are not theorists. Richard
elitist, and second, does denying a faculty Campbell, for instance, is a media critic.
member tenure solely onthe basis of his or her When he came to the University, he was
not agreeing exactly with the LSA dean over essentially told that to obtain tenure, he had
what the mission of his or her department is to finish one book, write a good portion of
amount to a breach of contract? In answering another and have a third planned. He has
these questions, it is necessary to remember done all of the above, as well as published
what the University so often forgets: this is a numerous articles, been honored with the
public university that survives on federal dol- prestigious Faculty Recognition Award in
lars. Therefore, it is not only ethically dubi- 1992 and received acclaim for organizing
ous, but quite possibly illegal, for the Univer- national panels on literacy, political cor-
sity to deny the public a list of who (by rectness and labor issues and the mass me-
department, by field of study, by gender, by dia.
race and by ethnicity) is denied tenure. Unfortunately, his accomplishments
This is precisely what the University has drowned in the tidal wave created by Dean
done. University Chief Freedom of Informa- Goldenberg's popular culture purge. And this
tion Act (FOIA) Officer Lewis A. Morrisey is merely the most blatant manifestation of
rejected the Daily's request for a list of the what many faculty members have held true
names of people denied tenure at the College for a long time: the University devalues popu-
level. In a similar vein, Dave Cahill, who is lar culture studies. Professors who focus their
representing Political Science Prof. Jill Ann scholarship on television, music or other im-
Crystal in her on-going gender discrimination portant forms of modern communication are
suit against the University, was turned down scoffed at. Tenured and non-tenured faculty
in his FOIA request for a copy of the minutes members alike hold this to be true, and the
from the departmental faculty meeting that University only makes it self-evident when it
recommended Crystal for tenure. He was told denies tenure to professors with distinguished
that the minutes did not in fact exist. Later, scholarly records on the grounds that their
under the pressure of a court proceeding, the scholarship wasn't solid. From 1989-1994,
University admitted that they had the min- approximately 94 percent of faculty members
utes, and turned them over to Cahill. from the natural sciences have been approved
It is quite understandable why the Univer- for tenure by the College.
sity has decided to keep its tenure records In the humanities and social sciences the
locked behind ivory doors; the facts don't percentage falls by more than 10 percent.
speak well for the University: from 1977- As Robin Kelley, an assistant professor
1993,11 percent of the men recommended by who began studying popular culture only
an LSA department for tenure have then been after he was given tenure, said, "... for
denied by the College. Thirty-one percent of cultural studies to be accepted seriously as
women recommended by their departments an area of inquiry, we have a lot more
have been denied. convincing to do."
In the last two years, all but one faculty The University is suffering from the
member denied tenure at the College level has Whitewater syndrome. It thinks that instead
been either a woman, a member of the Com- of coming clean with past mistakes, and get-
munication department or both (the once ex- ting on with its business, it should deny its
ception was a minority from the Art History mistakes and then compile them by releasing
department). In a vacuum, this isn't incred- no information to the public - currently, all
ibly meaningful. But consider a 16-year that is released is a nameless statistical break-
pattern of glass ceilings for women and down that includes only gender and whether
students of popular culture. Consider LSA that teacher comes from the humanities, so-
Dean Edie Goldenberg's autocratic seizure cial sciences or natural sciences.
of the communications department. Con- "Physician, heal thyself," is a nice motto,
sider, moreover, that both Richard Campbell but its getting old. Students and faculty alike
and Holli A. Semetko were recommended must demand that the tenureprocess is opened
unanimously for tenure by the Communica- up.
Chaos intheCm dept.
SA Dean Edie Goldenberg paid more In addition, the Dean declared the
han $300,000 to bring Neil Malamuth to department's five-year plan unacceptable
head the University's Department of Com- and suspended the search for new faculty.
munication, supposedly in an attempt to pro- She said she would be appointing a commit-
vide order and a sense of focus to the school's tee to recommend what the future of the
sixth largest department. department should be.
Now, nearly three years later, the Concurrently, an advisory committee will
University's investment has turned foul - be formed to try to reach a consensus on what
leaving the dean with a department in even an ideal Communication curriculum at the

greater turmoil, Malamuth back at his old University should consist of based on inde-
position in California, a multimillion dollar pendent research and discussion with both
lab that is collecting dust and a demoralized faculty and students.
faculty uncertain about its future. This unprecedented move by the dean
The history of the Department of Com- smacks of the micromanagement that has
munication paints a sordid picture of a dean afflicted the University in recent years. For
who thrives on micromanagement and takes faculty, this meant frustration at the lack of
extraordinary measures to hide her mis- ability to come to agreement on what a liberal
takes. A department in limbo, the fate of the arts communication curriculum should con-
department lies not with the faculty mem- sist of. For students, especially students im-
bers most concerned with providing educa- mersed in fields that don't fit the orthodox
tion to students, but with administrators far quantitative mode that Goldenberg seems
removed from the lecture hall. The story to want for the department, this meant an
involves, among other things, ethical ques- academic future in jeopardy. The depart-
tions in how the University dealt with Shira ment is saddled with few tenured and ten-
Orion, a student of Malamuth's at UCLA ure-track faculty, and continues to receive
who followed him to the University and funding that pales in comparison to that
lived with him in University-subsidized received by other social science and human-
housing. Goldenberg approved a sweet deal ity departments, while remaining one of the
that provided Orion a teaching assistant job largest concentration programs within LSA.

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To 5AM""" ANt' SVRe YOU'RE
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'Separate entrances'
To the Daily:
Related to the privileging
of a "quantitative" over a
"qualitative" (i.e. humanistic)
approach in setting out the
goals of the Communication
department; perhaps LSA
Dean Edie Goldenberg should
have referred to some "penile
cuff" data before hiring Mr.
Malamuth. This would have
certainly served the best
interest of the University in
the light of the ethically
compromising situation
created in accommodating the
needs of his temporary
"significant other." How does
the same "party line" that
favors hard social research
over the sentimentality of
non-quantifiable discourse,
that prefers theoretical
abstraction over a
straightforward and
sometimes metaphorical
language understood by a
non-academic audience,
explain the bestowing of
teacher's assistantships and
Law School tuition waivers
on the basis of personal
relationship rather than
academic merit? This seems
particularly problematic and
contradictory in that it shows
a disturbing disregard for
those already in the
Communication department
"quantitatively" proven more

worthy. I assume this is the
same kind of logic that
denies professors like
Richard Campbell tenure.
With the flurry of
construction going on around
the Central Campus area one
wonders what new "separate
entrances" are taking shape
in the name of cutting edge
scholarship.
RANDALL TESSIER
Graduate student
Department of English
Racist evidence a little
farfetched
To the Daily:
It seems at least once a
week, I can look forward to
some type of an article
whining about the
subjugation of a given race
and how society (in one form
or another) is to blame.
Eugene Bowen's column
"Looking for racism and
finding it" was no exception.
Regarding your comments
about "Boyz N the Hood",
the film was an attempt, I
believe, to show life in the
"ghetto" and how uncaring
society tends to be toward its
violence and problems, not
to demean a group of people.
Concerning the women of
the film, perhaps some
women are actually like both
groups described in your
article. Whom would you
rather young women (or men
for that matter) emulate?

And the claim that boys with
fathers succeed while those
without fail being a slap in
the face of black single
mothers? COME ON! It
pointed the finger squarely at
absentee fathers. I doubt
John Singleton is so naive to
allow such atrocities to take
place in a film he directed.
The most outrageous
claim in the article however
is that pertaining to
"Terminator II." Your
interpretation of Sarah
Conner's beating of the black
scientist indicates a
hyperactive imagination. The
scientist was presented in a
very positive role throughout
the remainder of the movie
(giving his life for the cause).
I guess from now on, any
movie with an act of violence
committed by a white against
a black, has a pro-slavery
platform - and if the violent
act is committed by the
black, that just perpetuates
the stereotype of the
uncivilized black, right?
Also, the quote about "you
people" is taken out of
context (especially in your
article, where you take the
liberty to abridge the line one
sentence later). "You people"
refers to the group who made
the cyborg. Sure, if one looks
hard enough for anything one
can find it, but one should
look objectively.
GARY SCOTT
Dental student

sleepers
unite!
"Good morning," my roommate
says to me every afternoon when I
stumble out of bed.
My roommate is a morning
person, and the phrase, spoken at
2:00 in the afternoon, hasjusta touch
of irony to it. I am not a morning
person, yet saying "Good night" at
11:00 or 12:00 - when I'll be up
another four hours - doesn't have
the same ring to it at all.
This is an injustice of epic
proportions. Forget patriarchy-the
most unjust of all dictatorships is this
moral self-righteousness of the early
risers of the world.
Sleep schedules are one of the
major things that divide college life
from the rest of normal existence. I
haven't had to get up early sinceehigh
school, and consequently I haven't.
In my dorm in college we had dorm
meetings at 10:00 p.m., and few
people went to bed beforeone. Parties
start at 9:00 or 10:00 on weekends,
and it's universally agreed that 8:00
a.m. classes should be avoided like
the plague. This is one of the reasons
the Real World scares me so much
-any normal job would require me
to get out of bed before 8:00, a fate
worse than death.
The real world just hasn't gotten
the clue yet that getting up early is no
fun. In college some of my friends'
parents never got the idea of 10
o'clock classes and kept wondering
why their kids sounded so tired when
they called at 7:30. It also makes
things very confusing when you go
home, because just whenyou'reused
to things waking up around the dorm,
your parents go to bed and dare you
to make any noise. During break my
brother and I would stay up and talk
until my mother would come walking
in in her robe which she bought in
1975, squinting inthe light and asking
something inane like, "What are you
guys doing?" My brother and Iwould
look at each other silently, wondering
why the answer wasn't obvious. "Is
this a trick question?" he'd ask.
"Early to bed and early to rise,"
Ben Franklin told us hard-working,
red-blooded Americans, informing
us of the only proper way to live our
lives. Somewhere along the line
people who drag themselves out of
bed at ungodly hours were accorded
an almost religious admiration
usually reserved for the Pope, the
Virgin Mary and Nancy Kerrigan.
The same self-serving morning
person who made this rule also
decided that sleeping late is "lazy,"
no matter how late you stayed up the
night before. It'sgettingup early and
goingto bed at9:00 that's admirable.
"If you getup at 10:00 you'llbe three
hours behind everyone else," claimed
the uncle of a friend of mine. "No,"
my friend replied. "I stay up until
2:00, so I'll be 21 hours ahead."
This the argument I've had over
and over again with my parents-if
I sleep the same amount of time,
what does it matter when I get up in
the morning? My parents seem to
agree with the philosophy Garrison
Keillor spoofs in his book Lake
Wobegon Days: "If God had not

meanteveryonetobeinbedby 10:30,
He never would have created the ten-
o'clocknewscast." It'sthe unwritten
rule of the Central Time zone -
right after the sports report, it's off to
snoozeland.
It's tyranny, I'm telling you. As I
get older I am beginning to see some
of the advantages of getting up before
noon (seeing more than two hours of
sunlight is, admittedly, agoodthing),
but I still consider myself a crusader
for the morning-disa4vantaged.
Those of us who prefer a later
schedule face a lot of prejudice. Not
only arewe called lazy, but annoying
people keep scheduling essential
classes at 8:00 and 9:00 4.m. The
only institution in the Westernworld
which runs on my schedule is
Meijer's, where I'm free to buy
plastic cups and frozen pizzas at all
hours of the night. Who let the
morning people design the schedule
of the world, anyway?
Years ago I interviewed a doctor
who was a sleep expert who
maintained - no kidding -; that

S
S

li

Campbell
The University doesn't
know how to adequately
evaluate interdisciplinary
cultural scholars.
The tenure structure
evaluates tenure candidates
in three categories:
humanities, social sciences
and natural sciences. If
your work overlaps two of
these boundaries, as
Richard Campbell's work
overlaps the humanities
and social sciences, you're
not rewarded for your rare
ability to integrate research
across disciplines, but
instead you come up short
for not meeting the criteria
of a single disciplinary
tradition. President
Duderstadt frequently talks
about the need for scholars
to break down intellectual
boundaries. This is
precisely what Richard
Campbell had done. In his
six years here, he has
generously shared his work
and time with faculty and
graduate students in
communication, american
culture, history, political
science, sociology, english
and several other fields.
Currently, his research
fa fl+ i'n.. - he.om of

and tenure troubles

new information
superhighway. As a
communication and
american culture studies
scholar, Richard Campbell
is one of the few University
professors who is prepared
to address the implications
of our rapidly changing
communication system on
the political process and the
rest of American culture.
The second shortcoming
in the tenure review
process is that it doesn't
recognize public scholars.
Richard Campbell is
highly regarded across the
country as an expert in
news, television and
popular culture. Let me
give you an idea of his
profound impact:
Within the past two
years, he has been
interviewed or cited by the
Washington Post, Los
Angeles Times, Wall Street
Journal, Detroit News and
Free Press, the Jerusalem
Post and the New York
Tines. In addition to his
two well received books
and several academic
journal articles, he has
written five pieces for
Tsavcer t° rt a--nA

academic talent and public
image, being a "public"
scholar at the University of
Michigan is often regarded
as a detriment to your
status. The incorrect
assumption is that if you
can actually make sense in
explaining your research to
the public, you must not be
a serious academic.
Finally, one of the most
disturbing aspects of the
tenure review process,
particularly as it applied to
Richard Campbell, is that
his superb teaching seems
to have carried little weight
in the tenure decision. In
1992, Richard Campbell
received the University's
coveted Faculty
Recognition Award.
Although the University
rewarded Campbell for his
research and his work as a
"tireless organizer,
excellent teacher and
nurturing mentor," he was
denied tenure within a year.
When the University
denies tenure to one of its
most innovative and
brightest scholars and one
of its best teachers, the
meaning of the University's
.: -. . , -f

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