Somebody posted this on FB from their college’s beginning of semester meeting:
Not to deny the responsibility of the people in the Spanish program who, I’m sure, did everything they could to make themselves as irrelevant as possible to students, but it’s interesting how there is never any conflict between the wokesterism of administrations and a substitution of Spanish with criminology.
As to how we make ourselves irrelevant, I was yesterday at the award ceremony honoring the best research of the year in an association of feminist scholars of French. French is obviously a dying discipline in the US. Do you want to know what people in this dying field consider their most important research? An article on the use of “inclusive pronouns” and the urgent need to export them to France. Strangely, nobody spoke of the need to import gender inclusivity to Marocco or suggested that France is not the most sexist country in the French-speaking world. Can you imagine attracting students to a program whose crowning achievement is the invention of the French version of inclusive pronouns like “zie”?
We are totally to blame and we should be honest about that. We teach language using overpriced, stupid textbooks that students hate. We make the most fascinating cultures in the world sound deathly boring. We champion the very slogans that will kill our programs. And we cheer wildly for everything global and transnational, refusing to see that the existence of academic programs in national languages was a result of the creation of nation-states in the 19th century. Once that becomes irrelevant, we become irrelevant.
This is going into my book on transnationalism but worded in academese, obviously.