In this exclusive excerpt from The Strange Angels – Book 2 of the Heretics in Occupied Eden series, professor Cloud Morgan attends a meeting to discuss the development of a gender studies program at Anasazi College. Widely varied viewpoints, representing a range of established disciplines, converge on the topic.
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At the next Anasazi faculty meeting, Cloud discovered that his colleagues were more divided than the Board of First Calvinist Church, and less constrained by any religious impulse toward decorous speech. At issue was the creation of a gender studies program.
“I’d like to appoint Emily Congo and Prasada Pratyaksha to develop and co-direct a curriculum that explores gender identity and sexual orientation,” said Magnus Bergen.
“With all due respect,” said Mito Picaron, “we have too many specialized programs now. Rather than integrating our studies according to our educational mission, we continue to spin out finer and finer specializations.”
“Gender studies will attract additional students,” Magnus said.
“Certainly,” said Mito, “if we want to attract young people who are confused about their sexual urges. We could develop a program in foot fetishes too, and draw a splendid batch of compulsives who’d integrate math and history with their toes.”
“I’m not opposed to establishing the program,” said the mathematics professor, “but it ought to be directed by someone other than radical feminists with their anti-male agenda. A male scientist is needed for objective balance.”
“Feminists they may be,” said the professor of sociology with a note of scorn, “but they’re both married women, so they must not hate all men.”
“I resent the personal attacks on the integrity of my wife and Prasada,” said Bookman Donne.
“The issue is most assuredly not their integrity,” said the math professor, “but the agenda they would bring to such a discipline. Gender studies requires scientific dispassion that these women professors, however well-intentioned and however accomplished they may be in their specific fields, would find a difficult task.”
“With all due respect,” Bookman said, “my esteemed mathematics colleague has spoken what we in the English department would place in the genre of bullshit.”
“Let me remind you all,” said Magnus, “that personal attacks have no place in our community of scholars. This is an experimental college, and most of our students have come here because of our openness to new areas of inquiry. Every member of the faculty would place himself or herself -however tentatively- in the progressive camp.”
“It has been well documented,” said the professor of geology, “that a significant plurality among the students matriculated at Anasazi have come here, at least in part, because they believe Sedona to be the physical locus of so-called spiritual energy. In this they display gross ignorance, yet their tuition pays our salaries, and we in turn have the obligation to help them grow out of their primitive mythology.”
Emily Congo turned to Cloud, who was sitting to her right, and whispered, “Welcome to Vortex U.”
“I think I do a decent job of transforming them from superstitious innocents into disillusioned existentialists,” said the professor of philosophy.
“So good that I’m treating half of them for clinical depression,” quipped the psychology professor.
“Let me remind you the subject at hand is gender studies,” said Magnus Bergen.
“The real subject,” Cloud said, “ is whether we trust the judgment of our president. No one is always right about everything, so our advice is important. But it’s his job to evaluate leadership, and I propose we let him do that.”
By voice vote, the faculty approved the president’s proposal. By unspoken agreement, they recognized that the newest professor, Cloud Morgan, had aligned himself with the Congo-Donne faction.
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Keep reading – get The Strange Angels here.
What do you think about the subject of gender studies? Is it necessarily biased toward the viewpoint of women? Comment below!