Humanities & Other Areas Threatened at Brighton

The administration of the University of Brighton earlier this month announced a plan to layoff over 100 faculty members and 30 support staff, focusing the cuts particularly on the humanities, in which “every single member of its teaching team has been selected for potential redundancy.”

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University spokespeople explained that the reasoning for the cuts has a “financial dimension” which they described in language devoid of agency, as if members of the university’s administration are not in the slightest bit responsible for what has happened. This has been paired with propagandistically positive language about the cuts, which are described as making “the most of opportunities” to “ensure our future sustainability and success”.

Students have protested the cuts, and now faculty and their supporters are circulating an open letter. Here’s an excerpt:

The number of planned cuts from within [the humanities] risks rendering its continuation impossible. Its closure, were it to proceed, would end the concentrated provision of philosophy, cultural studies and history at the University, and would severely diminish the teaching of literature. Undermining the Humanities in this way would deprive the University of Brighton of elements of teaching and scholarly research that are centrally important in the very definition of a university—as well as losing a resource of significant value across the institution.

The letter is here, and is open to signatories.

A selection of individual letters sent directly to members of the administration is here (see this page for the relevant contact information).

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