A new study by the National Association of Scholars has found that 70 percent of the summer reading books assigned to incoming college freshmen in the U.S. show a liberal bias and are not academically challenging, setting off a storm of debate in educational circles.
-- From "Study Finds Liberal Bias in College Summer Reading Lists, Stirring Debate" By Ed Barnes, FOXNews.com 6/23/10
The report, "Beach Books: What Do Colleges Want Students to Read Outside Class?", surveyed 290 colleges and categorized their summer reading lists in broad terms, such as "multiculturalism, immigration and racism" (the most common category chosen by colleges), or "environmentalism, animal rights and food" (the second largest liberal category selected by colleges). The study found that "the choices by and large reflect leftist political perspectives."
"Even where the books themselves may convey more complex social views, most of the books on the list fit neatly with the agenda of the campus left: anti-Western, anti-business, multicultural, environmentalist and alienated. The books do signal what lies ahead for students in many colleges: a four-year program of more of the same," the report concluded.
The study did not look at the alleged bias of the assigned books individually, according to NAS spokeswoman Ashley Thorne, who helped create the list. "We looked at what the books were about," she said, and then categorized the general subject as either liberal or conservative.
"Only 2 percent of the books were considered conservative," she said.
. . . Peter Wood, president of NAS, stood by his group's report, saying, "Something is wrong when Frankenstein is the best book on the list; the only work of philosophy is The Communist Manifesto; and books on Africa outnumber books on Europe nearly six to one."
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