Since the end of the Bush era, disinvitations and cancelation campaigns have become the near exclusive preserve of the Left, with the range of opinion warranting such attacks spreading beyond the traditionally taboo HBD/IQ nexus to encompass more and more areas, such as affirming the existence of physiological differences between the sexes. According to a recent report from FIRE, this reached a crescendo during the Trump years, with the number of “targeting incidents” rising from 24 in 2015 to 113 in 2020.
As Noah Carl points out, the Left is massively overrepresented in academia relative to the right, by a factor of at least 6 to 1. So the disparity in targeting attempts actually conceals what is in fact an almost entirely one-sided campaign. Each individual “right-winger” in academia is about 10x more likely to be “targeted” than a “left-winger”. Moreover, while Noah is perhaps too politic to point this out, I would add that even to the extent that the “Right” engages in “cancelation” campaigns, it is typically to defend Israel – the one culture war besides banning the abortion of Down’s syndrome fetuses that modern American conservatives seem to really care about.
Still, assuming you haven’t been living under a rock the past few years, there’s nothing particularly new or interesting about any of this. But what did strike me about the report is the following observation by Cory Clark:
Although only 30% of targeted scholars were women, when targeted, women were slightly more likely to be terminated than men (29% vs. 23%). And when women do piss people off, they REALLY piss people off. The four largest petitions were all against female scholars.
Now this one is a more novel and interesting observation. And it suggests a lot of internalized sexism. Going by those percentages, 35% of the “controversial” scholars terminated for political reasons, are women (30%*29%/(30%*29%+70*23%) = 35%). This doesn’t sound all that bad or unexpected, but only so long as you don’t ask the question of how underrepresented women in particular are in the at-risk group. What percentage of female academics can be classified as controversial in the first place, relative to men? Almost certainly way less than 35%.
This isn’t even a supposition. According to Heiner Rindermann’s 2020 survey, women accounted for 17% of the experts in intelligence research – the single most consistently replicated, but also the most controversial, area of psychology (whereas they constitute 50%+ of psychologists as a whole). To take a more concrete example: While highly multiracial, the Advisory Board of Mankind Quarterly is 10% female (2/20). This matches the general 10% seen across “Coffee Salon” type environments characterized by the combination of intellectuality and some degree of “discordance” from societal norms and mores. Reality is, women are much less likely to make “controversial” comments or observations, and when they do, they were generally couched in much “nicer” language. Moreover, that 10% rears its head even in the sex distribution of academics who are most committed to supporting free speech:
All this implies that female scholars are something like 2-3x as likely to face repercussions for saying anti-Woke things than are men (10-15% free speech/anti-Woke, 35% punished for it).
Incidentally, this also syncs with Douglas K. Murray’s recent observations that women opposed to transgender maximalism tend to get bullied more than he does:
After all, countless female authors have written articles expressing scepticism towards the transgender movement — many of them more moderate than my own. Yet almost every time, I have watched in horror as online and offline mobs are stirred up against them and not me. Julie Bindel, Kathleen Stock, Selina Todd, JK Rowling, Abigail Shrier, Helen Joyce — some of these women have been subjected to physical assault; the rest threatened with it. …
Last year, for instance, [Owen] Jones was one of the more prominent figures in the witch-hunt against the then Guardian journalist Suzanne Moore. … There is now a pattern. This week, Jones targeted another exceptionally talented female writer, Sarah Ditum, for the same reason: she disagreed with him about trans issues.
But this time, people started to notice the trend. As the Left-wing journalist Helen Lewis — formerly of the New Statesman — observed, it is becoming increasingly clear that Jones only seems to go for female journalists.
Now I suppose there is a kind of evolutionary logic to it. Women not only tend to be, but are socially expected to be more conformist/”conservative” than men (it’s less risky and men are more expendable). They also have thinner skins (both literally and metaphorically). Social pressure has more of an effect on them.
So it’s darkly amusing how even (especially?) SJWs intuitively know this and act on their “internalized sexism” as befits their status as modern-era witch-hunters.
Nonetheless, this does add an important caveat to the observations/complaints about female overrepresentation in SJWism that is often made in “anti-Woke” and especially “Alt Right” circles. On the one hand, since women are naturally much more conformist then men, there is nothing surprising about this – conformism is, by definition, loaded towards observing the norms and enforcing the mores of the dominant culture, so your opinions about it will naturally depend on your assessment of how “good” or “bad” said culture is (which happens to be Wokeism in the modern West). However, apart from that, there remains the highly “traditionalist” and, in this particular context, highly ironic social expectation that women in particular should not dare stray beyond the boundaries of Woke discourse. Even more curiously, this social expectation seems to be most assiduously policed by Woke men like Owen Jones. And as if that wasn’t enough, amongst the anti-Wokes, there are also some people who want women mostly or entirely removed from the public sphere. This is, of course, a highly marginal position amongst the many diffuse groups who constitute anti-Wokes as a whole, who range the gamut from classical liberals and rationalists to old school conservatives, Gamergaters, and the Alt Right. However, those who do hold such views, most notably the “groyper” wing of the Alt Right who have recently discovered their profound affinity with the Taliban, also tend to be its loudest elements (and journalists are most happy to exhibit them). Not the sort of people whom women who are otherwise inclined towards Woke-skepticism would generally want to associate with or enable, and understandably so.
Putting all this together, it becomes rather less surprising that women tend to be so much more Woke in the US (specifically in the US). Both nature and the social environment push towards that outcome.