Something is going wrong on many college campuses in the last few years. Rates of anxiety, depression, and suicide are rising. Speakers are shouted down. Students and professors say they are walking on eggshells and afraid to speak honestly. How did this happen?
 
First Amendment expert Greg Lukianoff and social psychologist Jonathan Haidt show how the new problems on campus have their origins in three terrible ideas that have become increasingly woven into American childhood and education: what doesn’t kill you makes you weaker; always trust your feelings; and life is a battle between good people and evil people. These three Great Untruths are incompatible with basic psychological principles, as well as ancient wisdom from many cultures. They interfere with healthy development. Anyone who embraces these untruths—and the resulting culture of safetyism—is less likely to become an autonomous adult able to navigate the bumpy road of life.
 
Lukianoff and Haidt investigate the many social trends that have intersected to produce these untruths. They situate the conflicts on campus in the context of America’s rapidly rising political polarization, including a rise in hate crimes and off-campus provocation. They explore changes in childhood including the rise of fearful parenting, the decline of unsupervised play, and the new world of social media that has engulfed teenagers in the last decade.
 
This is a book for anyone who is confused by what is happening on college campuses today, or has children, or is concerned about the growing inability of Americans to live, work, and cooperate across party lines.
For over a generation, shocking cases of censorship at America’s colleges and universities have taught students the wrong lessons about living in a free society. Drawing on a decade of experience battling for freedom of speech on campus, First Amendment lawyer Greg Lukianoff reveals how higher education fails to teach students to become critical thinkers: by stifling open debate, our campuses are supercharging ideological divisions, promoting groupthink, and encouraging an unscholarly certainty about complex issues.

Lukianoff walks readers through the life of a modern-day college student, from orientation to the end of freshman year. Through this lens, he describes startling violations of free speech rights: a student in Indiana punished for publicly reading a book, a student in Georgia expelled for a pro-environment collage he posted on Facebook, students at Yale banned from putting an F. Scott Fitzgerald quote on a T shirt, and students across the country corralled into tiny “free speech zones” when they wanted to express their views.

But Lukianoff goes further, demonstrating how this culture of censorship is bleeding into the larger society. As he explores public controversies involving Juan Williams, Rush Limbaugh, Bill Maher, Richard Dawkins, Larry Summers—even Dave Barry and Jon Stewart—Lukianoff paints a stark picture of our ability as a nation to discuss important issues rationally. Unlearning Liberty: Campus Censorship and the End of American Debate illuminates how intolerance for dissent and debate on today’s campus threatens the freedom of every citizen and makes us all just a little bit dumber.
Algo extraño está sucediendo en las universidades de todo el mundo. Alumnos que dicen defender ideas progresistas abuchean a políticos y conferenciantes y les impiden hablar. Cada vez en mayor número, muchos estudiantes son reacios a exhibir sus opiniones y a discutirlas con franqueza. De un tiempo a esta parte, lo que debería ser el «gimnasio de la mente» está lleno de personas que rehúyen el debate y el pensamiento crítico.

Tal y como describen en este libro el experto en libertad de expresión Greg Lukianoff y el psicólogo Jonathan Haidt, el motivo de tal situación se debe a tres ideas equivocadas que se han introducido en el subconsciente de muchos jóvenes, y no tan jóvenes, que creen defender una visión generosa e inclusiva de la educación. La primera: lo que no te mata te hace más débil. La segunda: debes confiar siempre en tus sentimientos. Y, por último: la vida es una lucha entre las personas buenas y las malas.

Como demuestra este libro osado y erudito, estas nociones, que pueden parecer beneficiosas porque protegen al individuo y halagan sus propios instintos, en rea-lidad contradicen los principios psicológicos básicos sobre el bienestar. Abrazar estas falsedades, y con ello propugnar una cultura de la seguridad en la que nadie quiere escuchar argumentos que no le gustan, interfiere con el desarrollo social, emocional e intelectual de los jóvenes. Y les hace más difícil recorrer el camino, con frecuencia complejo y tortuoso, de la vida adulta.

O, en palabras del propio Haidt: «Muchos jóvenes nacidos después de 1995, los que han ido llegando a las universidades a partir de 2013, son frágiles, hipersus-ceptibles y maniqueos. No están preparados para encarar la vida, que es conflicto, ni la democracia, que es debate. Van de cabeza al fracaso.»
Something has been going wrong on many college campuses in the last few years. Speakers are shouted down. Students and professors say they are walking on eggshells and are afraid to speak honestly. Rates of anxiety, depression, and suicide are rising—on campus as well as nationally. How did this happen?

First Amendment expert Greg Lukianoff and social psychologist Jonathan Haidt show how the new problems on campus have their origins in three terrible ideas that have become increasingly woven into American childhood and education: What doesn’t kill you makes you weaker; always trust your feelings; and life is a battle between good people and evil people. These three Great Untruths contradict basic psychological principles about well-being and ancient wisdom from many cultures.  Embracing these untruths—and the resulting culture of safetyism—interferes with young people’s social, emotional, and intellectual development. It makes it harder for them to become autonomous adults who are able to navigate the bumpy road of life.

Lukianoff and Haidt investigate the many social trends that have intersected to promote the spread of these untruths. They explore changes in childhood such as the rise of fearful parenting, the decline of unsupervised, child-directed play, and the new world of social media that has engulfed teenagers in the last decade. They examine changes on campus, including the corporatization of universities and the emergence of new ideas about identity and justice. They situate the conflicts on campus within the context of America’s rapidly rising political polarization and dysfunction.

This is an audiobook for anyone who is confused by what is happening on college campuses today, or has children, or is concerned about the growing inability of Americans to live, work, and cooperate across party lines.
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