Education: What Is Taboo?

Does "academic freedom" mean that a university professor has the right to say anything he chooses? Even if he strays outside his field of expert knowledge? Even if what he teaches is generally considered wrong? Or if it leads to extremism and violence?

The Stanford University authorities struggled with these questions last fall during their protracted investigation of radical Professor of Literature H. Bruce Franklin; they concluded that he had "urged others to violence" during an outbreak of student demonstrations, and so they dismissed him (TIME, Jan. 17). Last week they had to deal with the no less touchy case of William...

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