Friday, February 18, 2005

How to Hide Your Conservativism in Academia, Lesson #2: Don't Keep Conservative Books in Your Office

I almost blew my cover this week! Like any other academic, there are lots of books in my office. But, I discovered this week that if you have the wrong book, i.e a book popular among conservatives, on your bookshelf that it might raise some eyebrows. I had a copy of Hayek's Road to Serfdom sitting out on my bookshelf and one of my liberal colleagues saw it. He asked, "What are you reading this for? Isn't this that book all the right-wingers go nuts for?" His tone was dismissive, of course. I had to think quick on my feet to make sure and keep up appearances. So, I used the "to better to understand the enemy" line to put him at ease as to why I was reading it, then made a joke about how I also watch the 700 Club. Man, it was a close one.

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