Never Mind: Cambridge Went Back on Inviting Conservative Professor Jordan Peterson

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Posted: Mar 21, 2019 12:00 PM
Never Mind: Cambridge Went Back on Inviting Conservative Professor Jordan Peterson

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The University of Cambridge decided that they didn't want to host conservative Professor Jordan Peterson again. The university announced on Twitter Wednesday that they rescinded the invitation, “after a further review.”

The Daily Caller reported that in October, Peterson was supposed to begin a visiting fellowship at the university divinity school. As of Thursday, the university didn’t provide a statement detailing why they made their decision. 

According to The Guardian, a spokesperson for the university told them that Peterson doesn’t fit their “inclusive environment.”

“[Cambridge] is an inclusive environment and we expect all our staff and visitors to uphold our principles. There is no place here for anyone who cannot,” the spokesperson said.

The anonymous spokesperson wasn’t the only one who expressed distaste towards Peterson’s politics. Dr. Priyamvada Gopal, a member of the Faculty of English, made sarcastic quips toward the professor. She also condemned him for his skin color. 

Cambridge defended Gopal in the past for her critiques of colonialism and said they look to uphold her freedom of speech.

The faculty aren’t the only ones pitting themselves against Peterson. The Cambridge University Students’ Union (CUSU), not to be confused with the Cambridge Union, said that they were relieved to hear that Peterson was disinvited.

CUSU, a, “representative body for all 20,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students in the University of Cambridge,” stated on their website that they plan to shrink in size because students felt unrepresented by them.

“Our consultations showed that students felt removed from and unrepresented by CUSU Council and wanted to see it talking more about academic and college level issues rather than making grand political stances,” the CUSU wrote in February. “However, history has shown that no matter how much we try, these issues don’t get put as motions to Council. The current structure therefore doesn’t provide much opportunity to discuss these key issues and so we’ve decided to devolve!”

Peterson pointed out that CUSU announced Cambridge’s decision to disinvite him minutes before the university did it themselves.

“CUSU, the Cambridge University Student Union (not to be confused with the aforementioned Cambridge Union), pinned to their Twitter account the rescindment announcement three minutes before (!) the Faculty of Divinity did so, and in a spirit of apparent ‘relief,’” he wrote.

Peterson’s past visit to the Cambridge Union garnered nearly 500,000 views on YouTube and stands as one of the Cambridge Union’s most popular videos on their channel.

“It seems to me that the packed Cambridge Union auditorium,” Peterson said about the panel. “The intelligent questioning associated with the lecture, and the overwhelming number of views the subsequently posted video accrued, indicates that there a number of Cambridge students are very interested in what I have to say, and might well regard my visit ‘as a valuable contribution to the University.’”