'COLLEGES MUST LET EXTREMISTS SPEAK'; UNIVERSITIES ARE NOT POLICEMEN, SAYS UCL PROVOST; INQUIRY LAUNCHED INTO JET BOMBER'S TIME IN LONDON; 'Campuses Must Be Safe Homes for Controversy and Debate'

The Evening Standard (London, England), January 25, 2010 | Go to article overview

'COLLEGES MUST LET EXTREMISTS SPEAK'; UNIVERSITIES ARE NOT POLICEMEN, SAYS UCL PROVOST; INQUIRY LAUNCHED INTO JET BOMBER'S TIME IN LONDON; 'Campuses Must Be Safe Homes for Controversy and Debate'


Byline: Tim Ross Education Correspondent

RADICAL speakers must be allowed to address students on campus in the interests of free speech, says the head of the college attended by the alleged Detroit jet bomber.

Malcolm Grant, President and Provost of University College London, said it was not the job of universities to act as "policemen" and prevent students becoming terrorists.

He criticised the "hysteria" whipped up in the aftermath of the failed Christmas Day attack and dismissed the idea that universities are "hotbeds of extremism".

Professor Grant spoke to the Evening Standard as he launched an inquiry into Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab's time at UCL, amid claims that the Nigerian began to be radicalised while a student in London.

Professor Grant has also been appointed to lead a national review into how universities work with the police and security services to try to prevent violent extremism.

Abdulmutallab, president of UCL's student Islamic society during his three years at the college, is accused of trying to detonate explosives hidden in his underpants as a Northwest Airlines flight approached Detroit airport.

A new audio tape emerged at the weekend purporting to contain a message from Osama bin Laden praising him as a "hero". Police and the security agencies are concerned that many universities and colleges are fertile grounds for radical Islamic preachers and banned groups. The Government's Prevent strategy is aimed at identifying individuals who are showing signs of extremism.

The strategy also relies on universities themselves providing information to the authorities. But in an interview with the Standard, Professor Grant warned against eroding freedom of speech.

"We must continue to regard students as adults," he said. "We must of course ensure that universities are not converted into hotbeds of radicalisation. But this is a long way from reality. There has been so much hyperbole and hysteria whipped up around this."

He said British universities had a legal obligation -- introduced in 1986 -- to "guarantee" free speech within the law. "Campuses are and should be safe homes for controversy, argument and debate," he said, although this clearly does not extend to "incitement that could lead to terrorism".

Challenging controversial views in an open debate at university may be better than forcing preachers underground, he said. "I don't think radicalisation works by radical preachers coming in and acting like drill sergeants recruiting into a group." An inquiry led by Dame Fiona Caldicott, Principal of Somerville College, Oxford, will examine whether Abdulmutallab began to be radicalised at UCL. It will also consider the way student societies operate.

The national review Professor Grant is chairing on behalf of the vice-chancellors' group Universities UK will consider whether academics and the security services are working well enough together.

"We (British universities) all have working relations with the security services," said Professor Grant. "We must, however, dispel any misapprehension that universities can substitute for the security services. We are not capable of acting as policemen. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

'COLLEGES MUST LET EXTREMISTS SPEAK'; UNIVERSITIES ARE NOT POLICEMEN, SAYS UCL PROVOST; INQUIRY LAUNCHED INTO JET BOMBER'S TIME IN LONDON; 'Campuses Must Be Safe Homes for Controversy and Debate'
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.