Last updated: Dec. 8

The University of Wisconsin-Madison has been under intense scrutiny for its decision to allow part-time lecturer Kevin Barrett to teach an introductory course on Islam history and culture. More than 1,000 e-mails and calls from citizens, and countless news reports and editorials have been issued related to the university’s difficult decision.

At issue are Barrett’s highly controversial personal views on the Sept. 11 attacks on America, in which he asserts the attacks were an “inside job” orchestrated to justify a long-term war in the Middle East.

When the controversy first erupted in late June, UW-Madison Provost Patrick Farrell rigorously examined Barrett’s plans for teaching the course, his prior teaching record and his academic credentials. Following a 10-day review, Farrell agreed to allow Barrett to teach, based on the course's merits, evaluations of his teaching, and Barrett's insistence that he intends to separate his personal convictions from his professional responsibilities and not seek to impose his views on students. Post-Sept. 11 issues are expected to comprise about a week of the 17-week course.

This site offers a sampling of the wide-ranging views on this topic. The university will continue to support an open dialogue on this matter.

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Read a sampling of e-mails submitted in support and opposed to the university's position.


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