Rhodes Scholars for Intellectual Diversity is a network of Rhodes Scholars in Oxford and beyond which aims to increase intellectual diversity and pluralism of opinion within the Rhodes community. More specifically, it was founded in response to what its members perceive as an unfortunate deterioration of the discussion culture among Scholars.
Recent years have seen a pronounced radicalization of political and social discourse within academia and broader society in general, and this tendency has spilled over to the Rhodes community. We see views gaining ground which aim to impose upon societal values and opinions that are not universally shared, yet nonetheless are presented by their proposers as the only acceptable option. In a healthy environment, such views would be openly discussed, and opposing opinions would compete with each other for support on the basis of the strength of their arguments. Nowadays, however, dissent is all too frequently not countered with facts and reasoned arguments, but with baseless accusations, ad hominem fallacies and outright insults. Rhodes Scholars for Intellectual Diversity aims to stand firm against the danger of an intellectual mono-culture which this entails. Its members are committed to engaging proposers of such views in debate, in order to fight the risk of pluralistic ignorance which would otherwise be fostered by the lack of discussion or challenge.
Rhodes Scholars for Intellectual Diversity is independent and not affiliated with any particular political organisation or philosophy; its members come from different national, social and professional backgrounds and disagree on many topics. What unites the members of Rhodes Scholars for Intellectual Diversity is their respect for certain values: freedom of speech, the rights of the individual, and self-responsibility. They are skeptical and suspicious when self-appointed crusaders claim to represent a majority or an indubitably right cause, and they will stand up for the right of everyone – including their opponents – to voice disagreement. They think that this right should exist as a matter of course, and that their campaign should therefore be superfluous, but they regret that the current state of discourse within the Rhodes community makes it seem necessary.
If you would like to support or join us, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. To preserve your privacy we do not by default publish the names of our members and supporters.
Note: Rhodes Scholars for Intellectual Diversity for obvious reasons does not engage in language policing, censorship and political correctness. We believe that the rights to think, speak, write, assemble, opine always trump the “right to feel offended”. The content on this webpage consists of original content created by our authors as well as links to content created by others. We censor and police neither. This policy does not imply agreement or disagreement of our group or our members with the content.