Liberal speakers outnumbered conservatives 11-1 at Indiana U

Marissa Gentry
Indiana Campus Correspondent

  • Out of 117 political speaking events listed on its official calendar for the 2016-17 school year, Indiana University-Bloomington hosted just four conservative speakers.
  • Liberals, meanwhile, occupied 44 speaking slots, with titles such as “Terrified: How the Anti-Muslim Fringe Organizations became Mainstream" and “The Social Justice Seminar: Confronting Racism and Healing our Communities.”
  • A Campus Reform analysis reveals that Indiana University, Bloomington (IUB) hosted just four conservative speakers during the 2016-17 academic year.

    Overall, IUB’s official calendar includes 117 events featuring speakers who either addressed controversial/political topics or are known for their political activity, about one-third of which could be categorized as left-of-center.

    [RELATED: Liberals dominate nearly 2/3 of political events at Tufts]

    The events ranged from commencement ceremonies and conferences to special lectures and exhibits that focused on issues of culture and diversity. Many of the invited speakers were academic experts and authors who have written extensively on relevant academic and public policy topics.

    Campus Reform researched the political affiliations of all 117 speakers, taking into consideration their public statements and opinions as well as organizational affiliations, and determined that 44 of the speakers who appeared on campus during the 2016-17 school year demonstrated a left-of-center political leaning. 

    The remaining 69 lecturers either delivered speeches on politically neutral topics or could not be effectively labeled as either “left” or “right” of center based on their past remarks.

    [RELATED: Liberals dominate 96% of political events at Carleton]

    Geoffrey Kabaservice, a history professor and researcher at the Republican Main Street Partnership, was among the right-leaning speakers who lectured at IUB during the last academic year, as was Terry Anderson, an advocate for free-market environmentalism who discussed environmental issues and policy. 

    Both Kabaservice and Anderson were invited as part of the Ostrom Workshop Colloquium.

    The left-of-center speakers included author Noah Salomon, researcher Christopher Bail, feminist activist Roxane Gay, and many others, who spoke on topics such as "For Love of the Prophet: The Art of Islamic State-Making in Sudan," “Terrified: How the Anti-Muslim Fringe Organizations became Mainstream," and “The Social Justice Seminar: Confronting Racism and Healing our Communities.”

    One of the most prominent speakers, from either side of the political spectrum, was liberal Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne, who presented a lecture titled, "Lee Hamilton Wouldn’t Recognize the Place: What Has Become of Politics in Washington?"


    Campus Reform's Campus Speaker Index analyzes official university calendars to determine which speaking engagements were expressly organized and hosted by the university. The index does not include any events that were hosted by student groups and outside organizations.

    Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @MGentzzz





    Marissa Gentry

    Marissa Gentry

    Indiana Campus Correspondent

    Marissa Gentry is an Indiana Campus Correspondent, and reports liberal bias and abuse for Campus Reform. She studies Environmental Science and Policy at Northeastern University and is involved in Young Americans for Liberty and Students for Sensible Drug Policy.

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