The feminization of the American university is all but complete

The feminization of the American university is all but complete. By Heather MacDonald.

Seventy-five percent of Ivy League presidents are now female. Nearly half of the 20 universities ranked highest by Forbes will have a female president this fall, including MIT, Harvard, and Columbia.

Of course, feminist bean-counters in the media and advocacy world are not impressed, noting that “only” 5 percent of the 130 top U.S. research universities are headed by a black female and “only” 22 percent of those federal grant-magnets have a non-intersectional (i.e., white) female head.

These female leaders emerge from an ever more female campus bureaucracy, whose size is reaching parity with the faculty. Females made up 66 percent of college administrators in 2021 …

Females earned 58 percent of all B.A.s in the 2019–2020 academic year … At least 60 percent of all master’s degrees, and 54 percent of all Ph.D.s, now go to females.

Identity and trauma:

Female students and administrators often exist in a co-dependent relationship, united by the concepts of victim identity and of trauma. For university females, there is not, apparently, strength in numbers. The more females’ ranks increase, the more we hear about a mass nervous breakdown on campus. Female students disproportionately patronize the burgeoning university wellness centers, massage therapies, relaxation oases, calming corners, and healing circles. Another newly installed female college president, Dartmouth’s Sian Leah Beilock, claims that the two “most pressing challenges of our time” are the “mental crisis among young people” and climate change. ..


Female dominance of the campus population is intimately tied to the rhetoric of unsafety and victimhood. Females on average score higher than males on the personality trait of neuroticism, defined as anxiety, emotional volatility, and susceptibility to depression. (Mentioning this long-accepted psychological fact got James Damore fired from Google). …

Hearing an argument that chromosomes, not whim, make males male and females female is another source of alleged existential threat.

When students claim to be felled by ideas that they disagree with, the feminized bureaucracy does not tell them to grow up and get a grip. It validates their self-pity. …

The nonsense they speak, which we are all learning to deconstruct:

[New York University’s new president, Linda Mills] issued an invitation to a “university-wide conversation, starting today.” That conversation would address how NYU might “create and sustain a fully inclusive community where everyone can thrive.”

The invitation was doubly tendentious.

Such “conversations” (i.e., one-way harangues) have been going on nonstop for the last decade…

Second, the implication that NYU is not already a fully inclusive community is absurd. The groups whom Mills and her colleagues insist are being excluded are in fact preferred at every juncture, whether in admissions or hiring. If the beneficiaries of those preferences do not “thrive” at the same rate as members of non-preferred groups, it is because their academic skills are, on average, weaker. That weakness is the reason for preferential policies in the first place. …

Females tend to prioritize safety over truth:

The most far-reaching effects of the feminized university are the intolerance of dissent from political orthodoxy and the attempt to require conformity to that orthodoxy. This intolerance is justified in the name of safety and “inclusivity.”

It turns out that females and males assess the value of debate and the legitimacy of speech restrictions unequally. …

  • In the 2021 FIRE rankings, over 40 percent of students at Barnard and Wellesley (women’s colleges, all) supported the use of violence against dissenters.
  • In a 2018 Knight Foundation survey of over 4400 college students, reported in Quillette, 71 percent of males agreed that protecting free speech is more important than promoting an inclusive society; 59 percent of females agreed that promoting an inclusive society is more important than protecting free speech.
  • Two-thirds of male psychology professors from top universities polled in 2021 believed that pursuing truth was more important than pursuing social equity if the two conflict; around a third of male respondents said that the issue was “complicated.”
  • Fifty-two percent of female psychologists answered that the issue was complicated, while only 43 percent prioritized truth.

Men support the development of knowledge that explains reality, even if such knowledge threatens egalitarian norms, whereas females are more willing to suppress such scholarship if it poses “potential moral threats,” as Quillette put it.

Male values are so evil:

Excellence is now understood to underwrite white male privilege. Perseverance, absent a helping bureaucrat, is too much to ask of students who are, as irony-proof Princeton protesters put it several years ago, sick and tired of being sick and tired.

The left is mainly composed of angry women and weak men. The role of the current universities is to produce angry women and weak men.