Here’s Simon Reid-Henry in the New Statesman on why the attack on Middlesex philosophy is part of a wider assault on the humanities:
The philosophy department at Middlesex is a case in point. This is one of the leading lights of continental philosophy in this country, with an international reputation for furthering our understanding of the classics of European thought – be it Kant or Hegel, Sartre or Badiou – alongside a concern to re-appraise those works in light of present day political and ethical dilemmas.
It is, moreover, the highest Research Assessment Exercise-rated subject at Middlesex. Which means that even by the increasingly ridiculous standards used to measure and to monitor academic work in this country, the department is about as “relevant” as you could want philosophy to be. And as a former polytechnic that was holding its own alongside the Russell group of top twenty universities, one wonders quite what else such a department might have been expected to do.
Brian Leiter’s influential US-based philosophy news site has also reported the news – check out the comments thread for more astonished and outraged reactions.