Cambridge University har trukket tilbake en invitasjon av den canadiske psykologiprofessoren Jordan Peterson til et to måneder langt forskningsopphold ved universitetets teologiske fakultet, melder britiske medier.
Cambridge University has rescinded its offer of a visiting fellowship to controversial academic Jordan Peterson, who refuses to refer to transgender people by their chosen pronouns, after outcry from faculty and students.
The Canadian psychologist, who has hundreds of thousands of fans, styles himself as the “professor against political correctness”, and has argued for enforced monogamy, and pushed the view that men are victims of gender discrimination.
He has also said that the idea of white privilege is a “Marxist lie.”
The professor first came to fame in 2016 because he opposed an anti-discrimination bill that meant he had to use the preferred pronouns of his students and colleagues. He said that the law infringed on his free speech, refusing to use any other pronoun than “he” or “she”.
Students protested across the university’s campus and caused a media storm in Canada and the US.
He was due to take part in a two month academic fellowship at the Faculty of Divinity, planning to run around ten public lectures on the Bible, which would be a continuation of his work at the University of Toronto.
Academics and the student union publicly protested his appointment, with lecturer Priyamvada Gopal sarcastically tweeting: ” Jordan Peterson to be my colleague later this year? So EXCITED. So much to learn, so much wisdom to glean. Well done, Cambridge, no better way to signal our commitment to diversity and decolonization.”
PhD student Lieske Huits tweeted: “Enraged and disappointed with @Cambridge_Uni that Jordan Peterson has been given a visiting fellowship. Such hatemongering shouldn’t be given a place at our University.”
Another student, Neha Malhotra, agreed, writing: “@Cambridge_Uni by hiring Jordan Peterson, you are giving a platform to anti-trans speech. Instead of making this campus safe(r) for trans folks & those that fall under your so-called “diversity” mission, you are actively supporting their oppression. So shameful.”
Hours later, the university U-turned, writing in a statement: “We can confirm that Jordan Peterson requested a visiting fellowship, and an initial offer has been rescinded after a further review.”
Cambridge Student Union said in a statement to student paperVarsity: “We are relieved to hear that Jordan Peterson’s request for a visiting fellowship to Cambridge’s Faculty of Divinity has been rescinded following further review. It is a political act to associate the University with an academic’s work through offers which legitimise figures such as Peterson.
“His work and views are not representative of the student body and as such we do not see his visit as a valuable contribution to the University, but one that works in opposition to the principles of the University.”
Jordan Peterson has responded, writing on his website: “Now the Divinity school has decided that signaling their solidarity with the diversity-inclusivity-equity mob trumps that opportunity–or so I presume. You see, I don’t yet know, because (and this is particularly appalling) I was not formally notified of this decision by any representative of the Divinity school.
“I heard about the rescinded offer through the grapevine, via a colleague and friend, and gathered what I could about the reasons from social media and press coverage.
“I think the Faculty of Divinity made a serious error of judgeTelement in rescinding their offer to me (and I’m speaking about those unnamed persons who made that specific decision). I think they handled publicising the rescindment in a manner that could hardly have been more narcissistic, self-congratulatory and devious.
“I believe that the parties in question don’t give a damn about the perilous decline of Christianity, and I presume in any case that they regard that faith, in their propaganda-addled souls, as the ultimate manifestation of the oppressive Western patriarchy, despite their hypothetical allegiance to their own discipline.”