Can Conservatives Flourish in Academic Theology?

by Michael Sean Winters

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Over at Commonweal, Michael Peppard has written a truly important commentary on the issue of whether or not conservatives are disadvantaged in the contemporary academic world and, specifically, when it comes to academic theology. He raises many important issues and I would also like to call attention to one particular concern that transcends ideological considerations. Peppard writes: "It also helps to have a strong financial foundation for the purposes of child care, either from inherited wealth or a high-earning spouse or partner." This has long been a concern of mine ever since I realized what a pittance entry-level journalists were paid and, consequently, how many of them came from families of considerable means. The same is true of politics, which is increasingly a sport for rich folk. One need scarcely point out the dangers to the future of the academy, the commentariat and even our democracy of limiting participation to those who can afford it. 

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