Welcome to CAMWS
In response to legislation being considered in Indiana and potentially other states, the Executive Committee has issued the following statement:
The CLASSICAL ASSOCIATION OF THE MIDDLE WEST AND SOUTH (CAMWS) vehemently opposes the advancement of the Senate Bill 202 in the state of Indiana which imposes new tenure limitations at the state’s public colleges and universities and redefines diversity. As a professional organization that represents 32 U.S. states, including the state of Indiana, and 3 Canadian provinces, dedicated to “promoting the knowledge and appreciation of classical antiquity through support of pedagogy, original research and public outreach,” we firmly believe that this legislation poses significant threats to academic freedom. The proposed bill, which seeks to limit tenure by establishing arbitrary reviews, effectively undermines the independence of academic institutions, seeks to block the free flow of ideas, and targets equity and inclusion for marginalized groups. Tenure plays a crucial role in fostering an environment in which faculty can engage in critical inquiry, pursue groundbreaking research, and contribute to the advancement of knowledge without fear of reprisal or censorship. We are alarmed at the bill’s provision aimed at establishing such subjective criteria as the faculty’s ability to foster “free expression and intellectual diversity.” Lacking clarity and objectivity, such language opens the door to potential discrimination in the faculty review processes. In the academic context, we evaluate faculty only by measurable and quantifiable benchmarks. Vague “abilities” to promote “free expression and intellectual diversity” are not among any measurable criteria. The proposed legislation furthermore intends to silence discussions on systemic racism, equity, and inclusion on college campuses. It seeks to cover over historical injustices. We condemn all partisan agendas and ideological biases that would seek to interfere in faculty’s ability to teach and do research. We find that the bill’s aims are in direct conflict with our organization’s objectives of “defending the fair and professional treatment of all members of the profession.” This bill will force many to seek employment opportunities elsewhere and will have grave consequences for higher education in the state of Indiana and the United States. As an association that includes faculty and students in the state of Indiana, we oppose this bill in the strongest possible terms.
at the invitation of Washington University in St. Louis.
CALL FOR VOLUNTEERS!
The CAMWS Statement Supporting Diversity and Opposing Violence and Discrimination
The Classical Association of the Middle West and South decries all forms of hate, discrimination, racism, bigotry, and xenophobia. We affirm that all people deserve to be treated with equal compassion, dignity, and respect. Our commitment to the liberal arts impels us to resist violence and hatred, whether perpetrated through word, symbol, or deed: diversity is a resource that strengthens and benefits our entire community, be it diversity of ability, age, ethnicity, gender identity, nationality, political thought, race, religion, sexuality, socioeconomic status, veteran status or culture. We unequivocally stand with our colleagues, students, families, and friends to support and celebrate all ways to be human.
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