What’s the problem? This has to be pleasing to progressives on campus, right?

Robby Soave reports at The Daily Beast.

The Wild World of Oppression Studies

Does American University want to teach students about oppression, or does it want to subject them to it?

Members of the Washington, D.C.-based private university’s faculty are engaged in the process of “reimagining” the university’s core curriculum: the courses that all students, regardless of major, must take in order to graduate. Core curriculums are a way for universities to make sure that everyone on campus absorbs a common set of skills and values deemed fundamental to a liberal arts education—they often include basic instruction in writing, history, and mathematical reasoning, for instance. American plans to modernize its curriculum by 2017, and has convened a task force of professors to complete the process. A draft of their proposed curriculum is available here.

Under the proposal, the new core curriculum would require students to enroll in several worrisome courses that the Cato Institute’s Walter Olson has astutely labeled “oppression studies.” The task force calls them “Complex Problems” and “AU Experience,” but “oppression studies” is certainly the more fitting name. From the draft:

Although many Complex Problems courses will draw heavily on the social sciences (in the analysis of such issues as inequality, social violence, and health care access), others will be grounded in the sciences (climate change, dementia) or arts and humanities (art and politics, post-colonial expression).