Ethics and Authenticity for Faculty and Teachers (1930 words)

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Question

Based on one of the real situations presented in the various documents we have read for this unit (i.e., including the Steven Salaita case, the article by Katie Acosta about “political authenticity,” or any of the situations used in the articles listed below), present, explain, and comment on an ethical issue related to faculty work.

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In her article, Katie L. Acosta expressively describes the fraught social, cultural, political and, vitally, professional context many of us find ourselves pondering as current and future educators. While ‘quandary’ feels like a weak descriptor—itself a statement on how fraught so much of our internal and shared discourse feels—the quandary many of us are grappling with could be described as follows: This feels like a moment when deference and measured silence could be mistaken, perhaps even egregiously so. Eight years ago, it (naively) looked as if the worst of the culture wars may have been behind us – an unqualified boon given that any ‘war’ is, arguably, the vehicle least conducive to hashing out issues and making progress. But, now, it appears and feels as though the country is in the grip of a much more fundamental—and perhaps fundamentalist—‘culture’ war, with the stakes of such gravity that issues like choice and marriage equality, while somehow yet tenuous if not under outright threat, seem relatively quaint. But, for the educator, how much of this ‘war’ should we bring or allow into or even foster in our classrooms?
Note that, thus far, I have...

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