Incorrect about Joshua Katz, and about Socrates (letter)


To the Editors:

“Who Cares About Persona?” by way of Professor of Historical Historical past Nadya Williams is breathtaking in its tendentiousness.

In her zeal to sign up for Princeton College’s marketing campaign to sully the popularity of Joshua Katz, one of the crucial prominent students the Princeton Division of Classics has ever had, she even tortures the to be had proof relating to Socrates. For anyone retaining a doctorate in Classics, this displays badly on her—and her academics.

In keeping with Professor Williams, Socrates sexually exploited the good-looking however dissolute aristocrat Alcibiades. It’s true that there have been rumors in antiquity that there can have been a bodily dating, however best an ideologue on a venture would twist this right into a conviction and damnation of the thinker. In Alcibiades’s personal phrases, as instructed within the well-known Platonic discussion, The Symposium (216c–222b), take a look at because the younger sensualist may, he may now not tempt Socrates right into a sexual dating. Classicists will have to give due weight to to be had textual proof, and on this she egregiously fails. Given her sloppy scholarship, it’s not sudden that Dr. Williams dismisses the protection of Professor Katz as simply a conservative initiative.

Does she deem Pen The usa to be a part of that massive, right-wing conspiracy? Pen The usa excoriates Princeton’s firing of Professor Katz and accurately identifies the actual factor as Princeton’s overlook for educational freedom and freedom of speech.

It’s unhappy to look how Nadya Williams’s ideology triumphs over the pro self-discipline her topic must instill. An essay titled “Who Cares About Persona”  must itself pay extra consideration each to persona and scholarly means.

–Michael B. Poliakoff
President, American Council of Trustees and Alumni



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