THE ACADEMIC TRIBES by Hazard Adams

THE ACADEMIC TRIBES

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Adams, a professor of English and former administrator, promises a spoof of academe which ""only gradually sinks into ill-temper."" The spoof is lit'ry but so muzzy as to be nearly unintelligible. Its gist is that power is a mirage within the University where each Estate is the adversary of all the others. Thus: faculty vs. administration, students vs. faculty, administration vs. students--with the nonfaculty campus employees dwelling in a ""strange apartheid."" The mise en scene includes profs with beads and blue jeans, deans reading R. D. Laing, banshee cries of ""departmental autonomy,"" in short, a campus setting most anyone would recognize. Would that it stopped there. But Adams is aghast at the ""virtual destruction of any concept of liberal education""; he sees university life in unparalleled intellectual disarray. He dislikes the multiuniversity, the new ""student-affairs bureaucracy,"" the rap sessions that have replaced the pursuit of excellence, the coming of a managerial class devoted to ""methodology and technology."" Does he see any way to reverse these trends? Realistically, no. He looks back at his own stint in administration with dismay. Will anyone other than his colleagues read this? Realistically, no.

Pub Date: Nov. 15th, 1976
ISBN: 0252060008
Publisher: Liveright