Outcry as university tells staff to teach that whiteness and heterosexuality are a problem

Jun 16, 2024 by

by Sanchez Manning, Telegraph:

Liverpool accused of implementing divisive policies after lecturers advised on how to diversify and decolonise history curriculum.

History lecturers at the University of Liverpool have been advised to “problematise” whiteness and heterosexuality in their seminars.

The advice has been given in guidance on how to “diversify” and “decolonise” the history curriculum, sent this week to academics at Liverpool – a member of the prestigious Russell Group universities.

But last night critics lambasted its recommendations as “ideologically driven” and “divisive”.

In the report, entitled History Curriculum Diversity Audit, staff are encouraged to “think creatively” about how they can bring questions of race and gender into the topics they teach.

Giving examples of how they might do so, the guidance asks them to consider: “Can a module that teaches exclusively about race relations do more to problematise and de-centre whiteness?”

Diversity audit

The “diversity audit” also notes that there is a lack of “queer history” in the teachings on gender, while pointing out that there are no seminars “problematising heteronormativity” – a term which refers to treating heterosexuality as the norm.

Elsewhere, it tells history lecturers that it is not enough to simply include more BAME – meaning Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic –  women or non-binary scholars on their reading lists.

They are directed that in addition they must discuss the diversity of the reading lists with their students on every module that is taught.

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