Staff At UK University Told To Teach that Whiteness & Heterosexuality Are ‘Problems’

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Liverpool University

The University of Liverpool has sparked outrage after history lecturers were advised to “problematise” whiteness and heterosexuality in their seminars

The so called advice was given in guidance on how to “diversify” and “decolonise” the history curriculum and was sent to the academics at Liverpool, a member of the prestigious Russell Group universities.

The Telegraph reports: But last night critics lambasted its recommendations as “ideologically driven” and “divisive”.

In the report, entitled ‘History Curriculum Diversity Audit’, staff are encouraged to “think creatively” about how they can bring questions of race and gender into the topics they teach.

Giving examples of how they might do so, the guidance asks them to consider: “Can a module that teaches exclusively about race relations do more to problematise and de-centre whiteness?”

The “diversity audit” also notes that there is a lack of “queer history” in the teachings on gender, while pointing out that there are no seminars “problematising heteronormativity” – a term which refers to treating heterosexuality as the norm.

Elsewhere, it tells history lecturers that it is not enough to simply include more BAME – meaning Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic –  women or non-binary scholars on their reading lists.

They are directed that in addition they must discuss the diversity of the reading lists with their students on every module that is taught.

Teaching staff are further told that it is “essential” they make their seminars “safe spaces” because topics such as race and gender can be both “emotional” and “challenging” for students.

Meanwhile, department heads are urged to introduce compulsory training on “inclusive teaching” for all academics to help them “feel more comfortable initiating and managing such conversations”.

Niamh Harris
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