If you want to help stop the closure of philosophy at Middlesex, there are two simple actions you can do right away. The first is to sign the online petition protesting against the closure decision. We’ve had over 8,000 signatures already!
The second is to write to people responsible for the decision to tell them how you feel. Please send a brief email or letter to the following four people. Feel free to extract some points from the petition text. And if you’re happy for you letter to be posted in part or full on this blog, then BCC it to us at email@example.com
The people to email are:
Michael Driscoll, vice-chancellor of the university – firstname.lastname@example.org
Waqar Ahmad, deputy vice-chancellor, research and enterprise – email@example.com
Margaret House, deputy vice-chancellor, academic – firstname.lastname@example.org
Ed Esche, dean of the School of Arts & Education – email@example.com
You can just copy and paste this list into your email program:
firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
From: 22 members of academic staff in the Department of Media and
Communications, Goldsmiths, University of London
To: Michael Driscoll
We are academics in the Department of Media and Communications at
Goldsmiths, University of London who are horrified by the decision to
close Philosophy programmes at Middlesex. As you well know, Philosophy is
the highest research-rated subject at your University, with 65% of its
research activity judged ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ in
the last RAE. The Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy is, as
your own website rightly points out, ‘the leading centre for postgraduate
level study and doctoral research in Continental Philosophy in the London
area’ and has a deserved international reputation.
We understand that the decision to close the programmes was made not
because they are in deficit but because of a strategic decision to focus
on higher-band programmes. We also understand that the Dean of the School
of Arts and Humanities acknowledged the excellent research reputation of
Philosophy at Middlesex, but said that it made no ‘measurable’
contribution to the University.
We deplore such a statement and urge you to reconsider your decision to
pursue what we believe can only be described as a clear case of academic
Professor Sara Ahmed
Professor Chris Berry
Dr Lisa Blackman
Professor Nick Couldry
Professor James Curran
Dr Kay Dickinson
Dr Tony Dowmunt
Professor Natalie Fenton
Dr Des Freedman
Dr Janet Harbord
Dr Julian Henriques
Dr Sarah Kember
Professor Angela McRobbie
Dr Liz Moor
Dr Rachel Moore
Dr Richard Smith
Dr Gareth Stanton
Dr Pasi Valiaho
Dr Joanna Zylinska
I am frankly astonished by your decision to close your best known department, one which earns you such respect in academic circles in this country and internationally, with an unparalleled reputatiuon for excellent publications, graduate courses and seminars, which do such credit to your institution and their subject.
It seem particularly perverse to close down such a world-renowned department because according to your management accounting calculations the department is two percent short of the 55 % you require it to return to central funds.
If that’s the sticking point may I make a suggestion. The sums you and your senior management colleagues would need to chip in from your substantial salaries to make up the cost between 53 per cent and 55 per cent would save several jobs and the reputation of your University. A bargain, I’m sure you’ll agree.
Philosophy is the mother of all disciplines. Without philosophy, we won’t understand any academic disciplines at all. I am horrified to know that the department of philosophy is going to be closed.
In the world of capitalism and consumerism, this is not an abrupt decision. All academic disciplines are going to organize themselves around production and consumption. As a result, knowledge based disciplines such as philosophy; history, literature etc are losing its attraction to the face of capitalism and consumerism. I strongly protest against this decision.