Thursday, February 3, 2011

How Frangieh Got Tenure Automatically Part I

By now, we've written quite a bit on Bassam Frangieh. We've exposed his pro-Hezbollah, pro-Hamas, pro-suicide bombing views. We've documented his condoning of violent attacks on Israelis and his hatred of Americans and life in America.We've already discussed Bassam Frangieh's views as regards Saddam Hussein, how his commitment to democracy is really hollow, and we've released segments from this incoherent rant he gave in 2007 at the University of Bridgeport where he stated, among other things, that Islam is "very democratic" and that Saddam Hussein wasn't a "thief" -- despite the revelation of the Oil-For-Food scandal in 2004.

Now, we're going to move to Frangieh's "academic" work. I mention "academic" with quotation marks because Frangieh was denied a tenure track position because, according to Yale's Deputy Provost, Charles Long, he lacked “substantive original research” to enable him to put him on the tenure-track. (Yale did offer to appoint Frangieh to newly created Lecture II position where he would get a five year contract, instead of a three year one and more money, according to The Yale Herald.)

That lack of scholarship didn't stop President Gann from working to give Frangieh "lateral tenure" immediately upon his arrival at Claremont McKenna College, without it appears doing so much as a cursory Google search on him. She, according to a source close to the decisions, told The Claremont Conservative that Gann told the faculty that were it not for him being at Yale, Frangieh would have received tenure. We don't know whether or not Gann withheld that Frangieh was rejected from consideration for tenure at Yale, but we do know that he was -- and that Claremont McKenna College immediately gave him tenure before he even came to campus in the first ever instance without the usual process of review. The Claremont Conservative has also learned that no one who spoke Arabic was even present at the college when Frangieh was hired.

Frangieh, who holds a Ph.D. in Arabic literature from Georgetown University, so, in theory, he would be eligible for a tenure-track position at Yale (or anywhere else in academia) in that field. That he was not raises interesting questions: why was his scholarship not up to snuff? If not, why not? The answer, in part, is explained by the Yale Herald, which wrote, in 2005,
...most senior lectors nowadays have Ph.D.s and engage in research. They also teach courses in addition to language instruction classes. Nevertheless, university policy makes a distinction between the kind of research that makes one eligible for tenure and that which does not. Long explained that the works published by most language lectors—those which advance effective methods of language instruction, for example—do not match the research and publishing expectations of tenure track professors. "I would call it a scholarly endeavor, [but] it doesn't necessarily involve research," he said.

In turn, the university holds that these publishing efforts do not qualify foreign language instructors for tenure. "It might well be someone who has put together things that they've experienced in their class. It could certainly be a matter of publication, but it still wouldn't be the same as the kind of original research that is currently required for a ladder faculty department," Long said. "The major difference is whether it advances the scholarship of the field or whether it advances the state of language pedagogy."[Emphasis added]

There's no doubt that Bassam Frangieh is a well-reviewed, if grade inflating, professor at Claremont McKenna College. What concerns many -- and ought to concern all -- is Frangieh's teaching of "culture" and politics under the catch-all course, Trends and Movements in the Modern Middle East when he has endorsed some of the most menacing trends and movements in the modern Middle East. 

If that course is anything like his rant before the University of Bridgeport in 2007 or the biased speakers he has brought to campus, including Zaid Shakir and the Syrian ambassador, then it is more than fair to raise questions as to his fitness to teach such a subject, especially in light of the revelation of a new program in Jordan that he will be heading up. Frangieh says that it will teach "major themes in Arab society, culture, and tradition." Islamic-motivated terrorist organizations, anti-Semitism, and suicide bombing are, unfortunately, major themes in the Arab society, but Frangieh has given his support to all of them. Can he really be a credible interpreter of an increasingly volatile part of the world?


Anonymous said...

Dude. Get over it already. It's tiresome. And who is this "we" that you're referring to?

Anonymous said...

I echo this comment. MOVE ON.

Shut up already Chuckie said...

We? Are you now Perez Hilton? Because somehow I feel like the two of you are similar in a lot of other ways too

Gann is pathetic said...

To All You Critics and Charles Haters,

If the school and this dweeb Frangieh would come out of their closets of cowardess, man-up and make a statement this might begin to go away. Frangieh is coward. Gann is an incompetent. The school is being tarnished. What happened to this Obama- transparency love everyone preached a few months back!
Again, if what Charles says is BS, sack-up Bassam prove him wrong. and Pam, pull your bleached blonde head out of the sand!

Anonymous said...

here is proof...
didn't prof frangieh say, for there to be real change thousands have to go out in the streets?
well look at tunisia
and look at egypt now
he is much smarter then you idiots

Anonymous said...

First off, I echo the point made by the first commenter.

Second, you're bringing grade inflation into this again? You just can't resist any attempt to make a jab at Frangieh (or his students) no matter how irrelevant or unsubstantiated your point. If you can't get him for "supporting Hezbollah", you try to get him for handing out easy A's. And if he does inflate grades in his class, it is no way related to his political views or quality as a researcher (which was the point of the article, right?).

On a related note, you seem to believe that a multitude of CMC profs inflate their grades. If that's the case, why isn't your GPA better? Is it because that sort of behavior would never take place with the professors you take classes from? Or is it because you spent the last 10 months pushing the same tired story in our faces as you clamored for attention?

Charles Johnson said...

Could it be that I take hard econ. classes, work several jobs, and don't much are about my grades? But, in case you are wondering, I have a 3.8.

I'm sorry, but I think that a 90 plus average GPA is more than a little high for a language that Professor Frangieh has called "hard".

Anonymous said...

hard econ classes? lolz i've seen you drop more econ classes than you've taken. Name 2 hard classes that you've taken -- advanced corp fin? advanced macro/micro? game theory? time series (metrics?) ? derivatives? special topics in ...?

Charles Johnson said...

I took Law and Economics at Pomona and I've dropped only one Econ. course (Corporate finance) because I didn't put the time into it as I wan't interested in joining a corporate organization.

Anonymous said...

That's one and it's at Pomona. Don't you always complain about grade inflation at Pomona? Besides, Pomona's Law and Econ is with Marks and is without calculus/math. I was in your stats class and you nearly failed the first midterm.

Charles Johnson said...

False on two counts.

The class at Pomona isn't without math.

I got a B in Stats. Not that I mind, but I would just point out that people are changing the subject towards me, rather than the pro-Hezbollah, pro-Hamas speech of Bassam Frangieh. Could it be that they actually have no rebuttal but to go after me? How sad. --Charles

Charles Johnson said...

I also got an A in Public Choice, an A in History of Economic Thought, and an A in Econ, Ethics, and Public Policy. All of these were tough classes, but they weren't Arabic --widely thought to be one of the toughest languages in the modern world -- and the average for each of these classes which you may go look up wasn't in the 90s.

Anonymous said...

There are solutions -

There was a post on the email policy at CMC earlier in the month.

Does this Professor communicate his reading list, his course guide or his positions via email?

If so, then maybe you should report him to the email police and claim you have been offended . . .. we [as in those who have a brain and common sense] need to start using the tools the left uses to make its points - hate speech is REAL hate speech - not the BS that passes on most college campuses for hate speech these days - in fact, the requirements to pass most non-math/science college classes today is hate speech.