viernes, 14 de marzo de 2014

Why Liberal Academics and Ivory Tower Radicals Make Poor Revolutionaries

http://youngist.org/post/76249124213/why-liberal-academics-and-ivory-tower-radicals-make

by Nicole Ouimette
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The revolution will not be cited. It will not have a bibliography, or a title page. The revolution will never happen in the seclusion of the ivory tower built by racist, sexist, and classist institutions. Professional academic researchers in the social sciences of many colleges and universities exploit the struggles of oppressed peoples. Oppressed peoples are left stranded with little to no resources after researchers leave their communities high and dry.
Researchers steal value from oppressed peoples by making them the subjects of theoretical research without lending them access to information that could better help their communities. Articles, books, and dissertations written about marginalized populations are written for academics, not working people, and as such have little impact on the people whose lives are the subject of this research. Liberal academics and social scientists are more concerned about developing the wealth of academic literature than addressing the immediate material concerns of the communities they research.
Penelope Herideen is a Sociology researcher in Western Massachusetts (MA) and a professor of Sociology at the local community college from which I recently graduated. Herideen has written about the importance of critical pedagogy in community colleges. “Policy, Pedagogy, and Social Inequality: Community College Student Realities In Post-Industrial America” was the title of Herideen’s research discussing the realities that community college students face as they navigate their social and academic worlds. Herideen’s research is important, and yet, she was hardly involved in student organizing campaigns against budget cuts that affect low-income students. Community college students need resources developed through research like Herideen’s. This is a major flaw in academic research in the social sciences.
Liberal academics and social scientists need to understand their effect on the communities and people they study. Oppressed people who are put under the magnifying glass of academic research have to live with real consequences after the researcher leaves. This is especially true in the field of women’s and ethnic studies — where class, gender, and race consciousness are a part of the research process. Researchers leave behind a stranded community with little to no resources to help them organize movements that will create real change.
Tim Wise, a well-known anti-racist writer and activist receives thousands of dollars for speaking at various colleges and universities about the impact that white privilege and white supremacy have on communities of color. Wise has yet to give back to these communities in any real or substantial way, such as offering resources and support to the various communities he speaks of in his writings.
Researchers in the fields of women’s and ethnic studies entering oppressed communities without any desire to change serious inequities are in direct contradiction of their supposedly “progressive” fields. Women’s and ethnic studies were created out of the social movements of the 1960s. The aims of the people who started these fields of study were to catapult a movement of better access to education for people of color, poor people, and women.
These goals were met in conflict with a desire in academia to concentrate knowledge among groups of specialized elites, instead of a focus on popularizing this knowledge for the greater good. Try reading any academic text from your local women’s studies, ethnic studies, post-colonial studies, or anthropology department. The texts are almost always written so that only academics can understand. Some students and scholars call it “acadamese.” It is writing that needs to be decoded before it can be understood. This is what inaccessible language looks like in academic texts written about oppressed groups, but not for them.
Indian writer and activist Arundhati Roy discusses the importance of “ordinary language” in social justice work in her speech given at Hampshire College in 2001:
I think it’s vital to de-professionalize the public debate on matters that vitally affect the lives of ordinary people. It’s time to snatch our futures back from the ‘experts.’ Time to ask, in ordinary language, the public question and to demand, in ordinary language, the public answer.
Roy purposefully writes for oppressed groups of people by writing in “ordinary language.” Ordinary language becomes extraordinary when groups of people who have been historically “othered” are able to read something that connects to their lives. Academics who use “ordinary language” are able to encourage oppressed groups to consider their own agency in the fight for social, economic and political justice. Their advisors and colleagues constantly berate academics that attempt to write in ordinary language because their writing is “too accessible.”
Academics use academic language and jargon to centralize knowledge and power in their hands. Academics would lose a certain amount of power if everyone had access to the same knowledge that they do. The division of labor in the ivory tower reinforces capitalist modes of production through individualized research and study that is hardly ever shared with those it most affects. This is how academia operates knowledge in the form of transactions that create restricted, instead of shared knowledge.
Liberal academics become gatekeepers of knowledge by reinforcing ideas that knowledge should be bought and sold instead of shared among communities that are studied. In turn, serious activists who wish to create a world without capitalism and other forms of oppression are secluded from their communities through work in the non-profit sector. INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence Collective’s’s “The Revolution Will Not Be Funded” touch upon the issue of revolutionary praxis among intellectuals in Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO):
Progressive NGOs use peasants and the poor for their research projects, and they benefit from the publication - nothing comes back to the movements, not even copies of the studies done in their name! Moreover, peasant leaders ask why NGOs never risk their neck after their educational seminars - why do they not study the rich and powerful? Why us? The NGOs should stop being NGOs and convert themselves into members of socio-political movements.
The fundamental question is whether a new generation of organic intellectuals can emerge from the burgeoning radical social movements which can avoid the NGO temptation and become integral members of the next revolutionary wave.
It is time to stop depending on NGOs and academia to create revolutionary praxis for us. They won’t. It’s up to us, the oppressed peoples of the world to demand resources for our communities that are being studied by those whose lives are spent in ivory towers. The revolution starts from below and works its way to the ivory tower. Only then will education be free and accessible for all.


  • As context for readers: Malinowski, the white man pictured with the Trobrian Islanders, is famous within Anthropology for establishing the doctrine that we should not write ethnographically about people until we have lived with them for two months, coining the term "participatory observation" to describe how one should not simply observe passively but honestly participate in cultures before telling people about them. Now, of course, two months isn't a long time, but think about all of the journalism, other writings, etc, etc which are written with less than two months of work.
    To the author: There certainly are many problems with academia (and much of your argument here I agree with wholeheartedly, for practice-dervied theory), and anthropology, and certainly Malinowski, but I hardly think he is a great example of what you're trying to say.
    In fact, this picture was taken during Malinowski's researchon the Kula Ring, which established that all economic systems are not inherently market based or rational, which then formed the basis of Marcel Mauss' work "The Gift", which laid the foundations for much applied socialist thought that moved through working class labor unions over the past century, and continues to inspire "punkademics" and those of the working class who have meaningfully interacted with academia/research to dream new visions of possible societies.
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    I am totally down with this article, except for its reproduction of the idea that "academia" is some place apart from the "real world," which is a narrative that academics themselves tell themselves to reinforce the belief that they are special and to overlook highly exploitative labor practices. In fact, although there are some individuals who experience tremendous class privilege within the workplace, more and more academic labor is performed in highly precarious conditions for poverty wages by adjuncts, post-docs, etc. Which is likely the case for the poor community college professor you cite, most of whom may indeed have radical commitments but are also just trying to get by, and part of that - in the academic workplace - happens by publishing articles in peer reviewed journals from which the journals - not the authors - make a profit. So, nobody accuses a revolutionary who happens to work at, say, UPS, or Starbucks, or wherever, of being disengenuous because UPS or Starbucks are capitalist institutions whose interests are counter to radical struggles. Same with the academy - universities, colleges, etc. are capitalist institutions, and to get by you have to publish irrelevant crap.
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      OK, so not all those who produce knowledge for academia are class privileged. This does not change the dynamics of how those knowledges get valued, exchanged, and shared exclusively. this only further supports the critique of academia put forth here
      I think its fair enough to point out that as part of their job academics have to present their findings in a form that most people find inaccessible and often unaffordable. What's not fair enough is to stop there and not insist that if you are doing this sort of research you should absolutely have to find ways to return your findings to those being researched in an accessible manner even though that does mean you are going to have to work on that as a distinct goal in itself.
      If you can't find time for that its completely fair that people would dismiss any claim to be doing such research in an activists capacity and if you have no record of doing so those you want to research in future should probably tell you their time is too valuable to be used for your career advancement.
        Many academics work long hours for little pay as it is. The national average is 55.5 hours per week for faculty members-starting salaries for faculty are around 60k after years of training (assuming a 5 year graduate program and a 3 year postdoctoral fellow and you won't be making this until age 30) and probably student loans. How much more work do you expect people who are in academia to do?
    Hi Nicole Marie,
    I'm just gonna share what I posted as a status update when I shared your article on my FB page. I appreciate your passion and your holding our feet to the fire to remain engaged and accessible as academics. But this article is filled with generalizations that actually make invisible the work of many radical academics of color that I know and number myself among. In any case, here's the status update:
    "As someone who has recently been called "elitist" by various 'twitter revolutionaries' because I'm a professor, I take serious issue with this piece. It's filled with generalizations about who academics are and why and how we do our work. People seem to forget that MLK was a Ph.D. by age 26.
    All the Blackademics I roll with spend a great amount of time thinking about what it means to do accessible scholarship, to teach classes that are relevant to our communities, to put work in the world that matters. Part of what that means is that we do double the work our white colleagues do, because we have to write the ish that gets us tenure and write the ish that reaches folks outside the ivory tower. At least I know that's my life.
    The issues are far more complicated than what is presented here. And far too many of us have worked hard to get our edumacation so that we could be in a position to give back, uplift and otherwise join in struggle with our communities; to get there and then be maligned for it? I'm not here for that.
    My degrees don't make me somebody, but they are a set of tools, impressive useful tools to get important work done in the world. And people need to recognize and stop trippin.
    And as for the the twitter-lutionaries? Half of them are working on graduate degrees. Lol. And I can't wait for some young upstarts to come for them in five years like they come for us. #thatisall"
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      You're right about many of the points you have brought up and I agree. My closest friends are radical academics who are trying really hard to not be any of the things mentioned above. In fact, this article was inspired by my many conversations with them about the problems with academia in the social sciences particularly, a place where there is supposed to be an attitude of social change/justice.
      I'm speaking to academia as an institution. In every institution there are exceptions, of course, but that does not cross out the fact that academia as an institution does more harm than good to communities who are deprived of resources. There is good work being done, but the institution still stands as exploitative to poor communities and communities of color.
      I also don't consider myself a "twitterlutionary" and am not sure what that means. It seems pretty condescending on your part, but I will say that youth today are beginning to think more critically about their position in the world and where they fit. I think that's important. I wouldn't knock us down, yet.
    I also agree with a lot of the points in this article. Though there have been a number of efforts by social scientists to make their work useful for specific struggles, to channel resources into these struggles, to follow the lead of community members, and also to make their work accessible in terms of language and open access, there certainly hasn't been enough, nor have these attempts produced the depth of change we need. (The collection "Engaging Contradictions" is free download and offers some examples of research along these lines: https://escholarship.org/uc/it....
    That said, I do think we should be wary of assuming too big a gap between "academic" and "ordinary" language. Working class people and people of color theorize and express themselves in complex ways too! Some shit is complicated and difficult to talk about and actually requires different ways of talking. And as you point out, certain ways of talking are considered more valuable then others and that is definitely a problem. But rather than scrapping these ways and losing out on the nuance and precision they afford, couldn't we find ways to make those other registers more accessible to more people, and let them decide what's useful and what's not? Rather than assuming what a factory worker can and can't understand. Just some ideas.
    This is unbelievably poorly written.
    I love you guys. Please try your revolution without academia, and do it as soon as possible, because writing about it, you are just wasting your time, that academics are using to write, discuss and think.
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    I hear why they are trying to say but I have a problem with this article. I used to be a great political activist, and I loved James Petra's "NGOs in the Service of Imperialism" that was written at least 15 years before the critiques mentioned in this article. While while being an activist might make you feel good about yourself, it doesn't pay the bills. I lived on $10,000-$20,000 for the past decade and it started to suck. I am very happy to be in graduate school looking a profession.
    There are plenty of awesome academics. Howard Zinn is one, Noam Chomsky is another. If you look at the political books on any political activists' shelf at least half of them were probably written by people with PhDs. They problem isn't that they are writing inacessibly. Most labor and civil rights or queer history written by academics is written in a very readable way. Anthropologists and ethnographers write more hard to read, but their influence, and numbers, are marginal.
    It's fine to talk about changing the world. But when your country turns apolitical and people stop showing up to any protest that anyone organizes, it's sure beats being a barista to become a historian or a teacher, and at least try to figure out what is going on in your world rather than continue to watch it stupidly destroy itself.
      Many academics are having to work part time barista jobs/part time adjunct positions. Being in academia does not necessarily mean you will find a professional job. Also, when i wrote this article my focus was not on academics' salaries, that is not the point. The point is that academia as an institution does more harm than good. Theory is written in a very unaccessible way for communities who are systematically under-educated in this capitalist and racist system that we live under.
      I think it's important to understand the implications of doing research on oppressed communities without giving them needed resources so that they can be empowered to make change in their communities after the researcher(s) leave.
        The issue I take with this article is that it doesn't consider the complexity of men and women in Academia. It also makes blanket statements about an entire community which is ALWAYS problematic. I'll never understand the necessity to "bring down" another population in an effort to uplift another. Is not the goal to humanize both the oppressed AND the oppressor as both suffer from dehumanization?
        To make statements like "Liberal academics and social scientists are more concerned about
        developing the wealth of academic literature than addressing the
        immediate material concerns of the communities they research" is naive at best. How do you know that the thesis I'm using isn't meant to inform the national service project my fraternity implements to create access to college for young Latino men?
        I also find the charge of inaccessible language interesting considering the language that's used in this piece. I'm certain that if I took this back to the South Bronx and handed it to my friends who didn't pursue degrees, they'd feel a bit lost.
        Be careful in this type of discourse as it usually leads to a divide to no where.
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    I don't disagree with many points in this article, but I'm confused as to why Malinowski and Trobriand Islanders were selected as the top photo. I don't think Malinowski fit the description herein.
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    I agree with this article wholeheartedly. However, one important aspect of academia was left out. I believe that they partly write to their egocentricities and narcissism. They write to prove their 'intelligence' and not to be well read by the masses. After all, the average factory worker or other type of layman is beneath them.
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    I appreciate the article because I think the academy needs to constantly be under close scrutiny to ensure that that work we're doing is important and not just random, elitist garbage.
    Unfortunately, the academy is now a corporation, a business where publications are prioritized. While I agree with the author's claims [for the most part], I think we stray away from fetishizing what we think activism should look like. Sure, we're all not John Lennon in the streets with protest signs, but protest takes many forms...even in academic spaces. There are different types of activism for different spaces. Sometimes you have to learn the oppressor's language so that you can cause some damage from within.
    There are many academics who are internally critiquing the academy for being a racist, sexist place.
    As another commented mentioned below, academics also have to eat and pay bills. There are many reflexive academics who are committed to causes and feel connections to many communities. I do agree that we get too comfortable in the academy, so I think it's important that we always question why we're here in the first place.
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    I think we must recognize the sharp different between activists and revolutionaries. I don't think that we can start a revolution through morality-powered activism. Activists are labeled as such because they are separate from "the people" generally, and we can't expect that a few brave activists are going to change the world more than a academics.
    I think we (activists, academics, people) need to be preparing for change and making change in our own ways. I also don't think that academic language is a problem--as someone else mentioned, lots of groups of people have their own complex ideas, languages, etc.
    What I do think is important, and in this I agree with the author, is to be wary of studying the other. It can be damaging and the outcome may go to helping the wrong people (such as corporate interests) navigate a disadvantaged group of people (to the people's detriment). Sadly, besides perpetuating a problematic power imbalance, sometimes the most concerned academics are the ones doing the worst damage of this sort.
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    While the article raises an interesting point, its utter lack of sentence control and concise language severely detracts from its argument. Literally every sentence is cumulative, which creates both an awkward flow and tedium in its repetition. Moreover, the author overloads some sentences with abstractions; it's as if the sentences trail off into an ivory tower. Look, if you want to show that academia isn't contributing to any progressive causes, maybe you shouldn't write in a way that evinces exactly what skills it provides to any revolutionary movement.
      To be honest, you're proving her point. You're so bogged down in her "abstractions" and "cumulative" sentences that you're completely ignoring the powerful message. That's exactly what she's trying to illustrate.
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        You're right; I am "so bogged down in her 'abstractions' and 'cumulative' sentences," and I am "completely ignoring the powerful message." Why? Because this piece is awful. It meanders. It pontificates. It's hard to read, in the way a five-year old's handwriting is. As a fellow activist, your goal should be to inform me; I shouldn't have to wade through the doggerel you've cast down from some higher point on the mountain of enlightenment. Even Machiavelli and Marx worded their arguments carefully because they understood that public attention lasts no longer than the first criticism. The only "power" behind this article is its crippling of an idea worth discussing. Without clarity, it's not a message. It's the cry of a self-righteous martyr that wonders why the world won't listen.
          It's "awful" because she's calling out you and your colleagues - why don't you be honest and say that, instead of playing literary critic?
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            You've assumed that because Anne criticized the article, she must be part of the opposition. This lack of compromise and inability to even consider that those within a movement would want to improve it signals your inconsideration for working single mothers and cisgenders
          Oh, and you forgot to say that the other thing that is "awful" about it is that it is somewhat threatening to those academics who are very comfortable with the status quo.
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            I don't think it's an "awful" point. In fact, I think it's a very good point. It's just terribly, terribly expressed.
              Is her writing really that poor? It shines compared to most of what I receive from students these days. But academics are often (not always) trained to focus more on form than on substance--especially when the substance is uncomfortable.
                As much as I hate the rigid soulless writing of Academia this article is poorly written.
                Believe it or not, you can make an impassioned argument while still having concise, logically articulated arguments.
                Though to be fair to the author, the article is written clearly enough where we don't need to have 15 posts complaining about the writing style. It's not like che right it lik dis
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                  I think that, in order to promote true and long-lasting social justice, the will of the masses should be considered. The proletariat and Hispanic minorities of our society deserve respect and freedom from oppression,
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          Seemed pretty clear to me, and most of the people responding above. I'd recommend you a few more undergraduate summary exercises to pump those comprehension skills....
          This, from some one who disagrees with the argument. You have to respect people (not pretentious standards) to get respect. And, indeed, there will be no revolution or scholarship without that kind of respect.
      You're proving the author's point.
      Just because she doesn't write like a college person, you're belittling her and derailing the conversation.
        Your assuming that only a person who goes to college "and writes like a college person" can be well written or articulate. Way to prove the author's point, elitist ;-)
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        What the conversation is about is the impending revolution and those who are taking away from OUR movement. I'd say people who mislead and misinform others are just as detrimental as those who would stand aside in the fact of injustice. .
      Since it's my writing you are so concerned about, I'll address it.
      I purposefully did not write in a convoluted way. I purposefully wrote in a way that was more accessible to people who do not have a high school or college education. If you have a problem with that, then you have a problem with the entire argument I'm making. Women and people of color in academia have been struggling with this issue of being seen as a "bad writer" because they don't write in a convoluted manner. You're reproducing that same sentiment.
        "Convoluted" and "not terribly written" are different things.
        You also don't seem to realize how remarkably condescending you are when you talk about these poor oppressed people's inability to understand or express themselves using complex language. You also lose track of what marginalized groups you're even talking about; in this one comment you threw together people who didn't finish high school and women and PoC in academia, groups that obviously differ in their reading/writing tendencies. Talking down to the marginalized and treating all of them as an interchangable blob of people? I could attribute it to your inherent disrespect for others, but instead I'll assume that you just haven't thought very deeply about this stuff and leave it at that.
        And speaking of which, you apparently don't understand that you can find a piece of writing confusing without it having been written with the explicit purpose of being confusing.
        Whether or not your writing is "convoluted" is debatable but it is undoubtedly not coherent or logically articulated. I am not an academic... indeed, did not even finish college but I am well read and I know the difference between condescending, pretentious, rambling, over-simplifications and a well thought-out, well organized and logically articulated essay.
        That said, as poorly written as this article may be and despite (as a member of more than one of the marginalized communities you refer to) being put off by your condescending attitude, I very much agree with your basic concern and your critique of institutional academia... if not the over-generalizations and insults to my intelligence.
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        I think that we should consider individual freedoms when making such an argument within a movement. Honestly, if you're going to intractably defend your piece, then you're doing more damage to the movement. Reagan mentioned that we should be free from our conscience in making such decisions, and I believe it applies here.
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      Although I don't agree with the author entirely, as disqua_MI082ACf7W points out, you are proving the most plausible of her points: that revolutionary movements are not contingent on perfect grammar. It is elitism such as this that excludes the marginalized from conversation. Do you need to be an eloquent speaker in English to be licenced to have, and share an opinion on academia. Is that even what the academic institution is about: to ensure that your grammar is immaculate above and beyond your subject matter? Because it certainly did not make her incoherent to many of the people commenting. Whether we agree or disagree, we have understood what she is getting as.
    Honestly, with the exception of some helpful points (e.g. Zach Blume), I think most of the critical comments below are incorrect and unhelpful. Of course there are dozens of living exceptions to these "liberals," and there have been hundreds of books and thousands of other writings by genuinely revolutionary academics, but the basic point is clear and correct. Those of us who are active in radical and revolutionary politics that also work in and on the margins of the university know full well that the university and our university coworkers have almost no revolutionary potential. This does not mean that they cannot be useful, but that is another conversation.
    "The revolution starts from below and works its way to the ivory tower. Only then will education be free and accessible for all." This could not be put more clearly. Frankly, this piece was much better written than the comments that criticized its writing. And what nonsense, that we would even reorient ourselves toward the writing. This is not to say that writing is not an important skill to cultivate - it is - but rather that the writing here is perfectly fine. A criticism of this piece that pretends to base itself in the writing is absurd on multiple levels.
    That said, I would like to hear you follow up with examples of valuable work by revolutionaries who had some relationship with the academic world, though, or demands you suggest that we make on those within the academy who want to be part of a broader struggle. You've clearly read a lot, and some of what you have read has been useful to you. What's on your bookshelf? Do you have examples that might help us identify genuine allies within and at the margins of the academy, or role models for those of us who find ourselves there? Criticize everything, ruthlessly, but continue to build the movement at the same time. Thank you for this important contribution.
    Yours in the struggle, intellectual and otherwise,
    Isaac
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      Thanks for your comments. I appreciate both the criticism and support.
      Some people I admire who promote revolutionary praxis: bell hooks, Howard Zinn, Malcolm X, & there are more. But the people who influence me are the people in the communities I work who walk the talk.
    Thank you, Nicole, and most of the commentors, for a very useful and important discussion. Rather than repeat much of what I found myself in agreement with, I will only add that most "liberal" academics, in common with most other academics, never intended to be revolutionaries. They learned very well how to effectively kiss the corporate ass in grad school and they seek nothing more than to move up the academic corporate ladder and enjoy sabbaticals in countries that manufacture their favorite wines. I know you said that you did not want to discuss salaries, but salaries at the upper end of the academic hierarchy are quite comfortable and alluring, and that does indeed matter when we try to probe why they couldn't care less about empowering the peasants (including the oppressed adjuncts in their midst, who they often treat like the "untouchables").
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    There are academics and academics: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/new...
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    It's important to also remember the phrase "the revolution will not be televised". While academia is very much a capitalistic enterprise, it is important to not go to extremes and write everyone off. There are subversive methods of resistance academics can use to inform and aid the struggles for justice.
    Often times such efforts need to be kept under the public radar if such academics want to keep their jobs (they have to eat and pay rent too). If an academic significantly contributed to a social movement, do you think you'd read about it in the newspaper or on a university website? These kinds of blanket indictments of all academics are not helpful, and only further the divide between knowledge producers and the people who could really benefit from having that knowledge.
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    Education is not exactly the same thing as conducting academic research. Obviously marginalized communities have less access to education, but that's occurring at a much larger institutional level, not because researchers swoop in and steal all the knowledge. Knowledge is generated: it's not a zero-sum game.
    Also: research isn't done solely to publish papers. It's done to inform how grants - both federal and private - direct their money toward relevant causes.
    It's clear that education needs to be made accessible to everyone, but that doesn't mean that academics should be told to shut up.
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      Also, Amazon.com's blurb on Dr. Herideen's book: "Dr. Herideen proposes structural and instructional innovations so that educators, administrators, and policymakers can remedy rather than reproduce existing social inequities." Sounds to me as though Dr. Herideen is in fact disseminating her research so that it can inform ways to fix a broken system.
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    Ivan Illich diagnosed this problem and wrote about it 40 years ago.
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    There's some valid points here but it seems highly hypocritical. Without the ivory tower radicals that she's demonizing, would she even think critically about these issues on an intellectual level? I.e. isn't it these so-called academic elitists that provided her with the intellectual framework that allows her to make these assertions. Perhaps those that live in/attend ivory towers shouldn't throw stones? Besides that, approachable language doesn't have to mean written by an 8th grader as this article apparently was.
      Oppressed peoples have been able to think about their oppression before the inclusion of critical social theory into academia. I would challenge you to think about the ways that certain knowledge is produced and reproduced in academia. Oppressed people know that we are oppressed and we know why, how, and in what way. We don't need academics to tell us what racism, sexism, or classism is -- we already live it.
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      *There are, not there's. Yikes
    Your critiques are valid but you are not actually proposing any way out.
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    P1: The Revolution will not be cited, nor happen in academia.
    Revolutions, true paradigm shifts occur when new ideas become more popular than the old ones. The enviroment most likely to produce such is academia.
    As for the dispensation of said knowledge, that is a matter of legislation and civic management, which is not part of the academic process, but over which it exerts control.
    Funding for research projects comes with dictates on behavior, and if we demand moral stances and selfless activism from academics we must understand they are human beings with all the limitations and faults that implies. If the system does not support such actions then they are less likely to occur.
    P2: Researchers steal value...
    val·ue
    [val-yoo]
    noun

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