Thursday, July 04, 2019

Cambridge University accused of racism for allowing non-black lecturer to say N-word in class

She was probably finding her course too hard

Cambridge University has been accused of racism for allowing a non-black lecturer to read aloud the N-word from a passage in class, as a PhD student quits in protest.

The 800-year-old institution was criticised by 26-year-old Indiana Seresin who said that as a white student, she had “benefited from the structural racism” of the university.

In a “withdrawal statement” that she published online, Ms Seresin explained that she felt she had an “imperative” to leave Cambridge where she had been working on a Government funded doctorate about contemporary American artists and writers.

She said she has witnessed an “accumulation” of racist incidents during her time at the university, and went on to describe an incident where an English lecturer “repeatedly read aloud the n-word during our class discussions”.

Ms Seresin said that a black friend had emailed the lecturer to explain that she did not feel comfortable hearing non-black lecturers saying this word aloud.

But she told how rather than receiving an apology, the friend was “patronisingly told that she did not understand the context in which the word was being used”.

Ms Seresin explains that the disagreement escalated and a group of students, including herself, had “multiple meetings” with the chair of the English faculty about it.

They were also invited to raise the issue at the Teaching Forum, where academics and students meet to exchange views. Ms Seresin and her peers found the experience of speaking in front of senior faculty members “intimidating”, adding that they felt as though they were on trial. 

“Many of those present seemed simply unable to comprehend the difference between a black writer reclaiming the n-word and a nonblack Cambridge lecturer or student saying it aloud in class,” she said.

“We also faced hostility regarding the idea that different rules applied to black and nonblack lecturers, even though beyond Cambridge this is a widely accepted principle and for obvious reasons does not constitute a double standard.”



Bill R. said...

What passage was the lecturer reading aloud in class?

Stan B said...

Wow - hostility to a double standard applied based entirely on RACE. Who would have thought?

Anonymous said...

If hearing the "N-word" bothered her that much, she doesn't deserve a PhD. She needs to crawl back to her mamma's basement.

ScienceABC123 said...

You can't expect to say "nigger" and not have others also say it. That's would make no sense in a society where everyone is supposedly equal.