Of course, those defending Dr. Berkeley’s teaching record would be quick to point out that reliance on such anonymous reviews is dangerous at best. But her detractors would be quick to respond by noting that no other feminist professor at UNC-Wilmington – and there are scores – has been criticized as often on www.RateMyProfessors.com for imposing her militant political views on a captive audience of students.
But, of course, if feminists were smart – a prospect not addressed directly in the present column – they would be willing to concede that there is some validity to the claim that Berkeley is sometimes unprofessional in her injection of extreme political views in the classroom. Given that her present appointment calls for a reduction in her teaching load it could be spun as an “administrative solution” to a “teaching problem.”
And that really gets to the heart of my support for Dr. Berkeley’s recent promotion. I am willing to support an increase in fanaticism in the administration if it will give students at least a small break from their constant exposure to fanaticism in the classroom.
But of course there is one minor criticism of the Berkeley appointment that remains unanswered; namely, that it is hypocritical (and sexist) to promote an anti-male professor to an important administrative position when an anti-female professor would not be similarly rewarded.
A response to that criticism should not be difficult. All the administration needs to do is to search the content of www.RateMyProfessors.com for a male professor at UNC-Wilmington who is as consistently criticized for expressing “militant anti-female” views in the classroom. Then, he should be given a special appointment to the Dean’s Office serving right alongside Kathleen Berkeley.
Of course, we all know that no such professors exist. They’ve all been dismissed in the name of gender equality.