Although actual students in Stanford’s Education as Self-Fashioning program had no problem with Terry Castle putting down the quality of a student’s paper in a recent campus speech —

“I appreciated the fact that she was honestly critical of something. The reason I appreciated that was since I had stepped foot on this campus six weeks earlier, I had basically not heard a single critical word about anything,” said Erica McDowell ’16.

[Stephen] Goodspeed agreed, and said that sometimes the ESF program is “a little too uplifting and a little too much of an intellectual safe haven.”

— nervous nellies on the ESF faculty went all 1984 and reported bad her to every university authority they could think of.

The incident was reported to Richard Saller, dean of the School of Humanities and Sciences; Debra Satz, senior associate dean for the humanities and arts; Harry Elam, vice provost for undergraduate education (VPUE); and Martha Cyert, senior associate for VPUE…

You doo-doo! You’re in big trouble, doo-doo! HAHAHAHA. We told.

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3 Responses to “Storming Terry Castle”

  1. Mr Punch Says:

    One of the main justifications for the existence of extremely selective colleges like Stanford is that they teach very very smart people that they are nevertheless not quite as smart as they think, and that other people are very very smart too. This is not accomplished in a nicey-nice atmosphere.

  2. Paperback Writer Says:

    This post is really surprising in light of your regard for excellent teaching and for the ethics of professors.

    I think you’re wrong to attribute schadenfreude to faculty who expressed concern about this incident to higher-ups. What should those faculty have done, in your view–keep their mouths shut? When Professor Castle read from a paper she identified as having been written by a student in her senior seminar, she did so without that student’s permission, deriding the writing in a public forum, using that student’s work to support Prof. Castle’s contention that in our fallen era all student writing is so bad she doesn’t even know how to begin to address its problems.

    Seriously, you believe it’s likely “no actual students had a problem” with this? Do the students you know regard a violation of students’ trust in their professor as a right of the prof? Consider the impact on the individual student whose work was derided, and on that students’ peers, who’ve just learned it’s not necessarily safe to believe their writing will be treated with respect by their teachers. The possibility of one’s writing being ridiculed in public has to be, for a lot of students, their worst nightmare. That Stanford faculty objected proves not that they are evil taunters, but that they care about the impact of this incident on students.

  3. Margaret Soltan Says:

    Paperback: Thank you for writing. I don’t agree that this sort of thing would be for any student her “worst nightmare.” I await any student going on record as expressing upset about this. It’s clear that it upset their professors.

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