Real questions surround how universities are responding to the Occupy movement and students' attempts at free speech, assembly, and protest. The stories presented here paint a troubling picture about the shifting role of universities within a larger civil society and it would be interesting to see how others think about the campus responsibility for freedom of expression.
"There are probably a handful of institutions in the United States where what I would call the neoliberal shift - as a larger term for a move away from social welfare democracy to a greater kind of free-market structure - is evident and dramatic. One of them is Wall Street. Another is higher education."
Call for 'safe protest zones' as demonstrators face violence on US campuses.
Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan has become familiar as the epicentre of the American protest movement known as Occupy Wall Street. But when demonstrators left the site last month, their destination was not the financial district, City Hall or the neighbourhoods where the city's wealthy "1 per cent" (the protesters call themselves "the 99 per cent") live in buildings guarded by doormen.
The marchers headed instead to the City University of New York's Baruch College campus, pledging on the way to stop repaying their student loans, and trying to interrupt a hearing at which the university's trustees were considering yet another tuition fee rise.
Forcibly evicted from the public parks it had occupied for weeks in cities from Boston to Oakland, California, the boisterous Occupy movement shifted suddenly and dramatically on to university and college campuses. At the same time, it added to its many grievances the skyrocketing cost of higher education, complaining about everything from student-loan debt to lofty presidential salaries and benefits.
Its shift of focus, physical and ideological, has not been welcomed.