120 Penn St. L. Rev. 1027 (2015-2016)
Faculty, the Courts, and the First Amendment

handle is hein.journals/dlr120 and id is 1067 raw text is: 






Essay: Faculty, the Courts, and the First
Amendment


Neal H. Hutchens, Frank Fernandez, & Azalea
Hulbert*

I. INTRODUCTION
     The period from approximately 1945 to 1970 represented a time of
unprecedented expansion in U.S. higher education.' It also marked the
professional ascendency of college and university faculty, of an academic
revolution as characterized by Christopher Jencks and David Riesman.'
Contemporary faculty, however, face the unraveling of this academic
revolution. A key trend involves a shift away from tenure-stream
appointments and growing reliance on non-tenure-track faculty, including
part-time adjuncts, now often referred to as the new faculty majority.3
With many faculty increasingly lacking the protections of tenure,
questions and debate abound over the future prospects of faculty
independence and academic freedom. Issues related to faculty speech and
academic freedom also entail a constitutional dimension-one especially
relevant for public higher education faculty-that provides the focus for
this article. Akin to the unclear prospects for tenure, First Amendment
protection for faculty speech, including that related to research and
teaching, faces an uncertain and contested future.
     Despite periodic lofty rhetoric from the U.S. Supreme Court, First
Amendment protection for faculty academic freedom-for professors'
professionally-based speech in general-represents something of a



   *   Neal H. Hutchens is Professor of Education at the University of Mississippi.
Frank Fernandez is a Fellow at the Institute of Higher Education at the University of
Florida. Azalea Hulbert is a Ph.D. Candidate in Higher Education at Penn State University.
The authors are thankful to the Penn State Law Review for the opportunity to participate in
this symposium issue.
    1. See JOHN R. THELIN, A HISTORY OF AMERICAN HIGHER EDUCATION 260-316 (2d
ed. 2011).
   2. See generally CHRISTOPHER JENCKS & DAvID RIESMAN, THE ACADEMIC
REVOLUTION (1968).
   3. See, e.g., NEW FACULTY MAJORITY, http://www.newfacultymajority.info (last
visited July 12, 2016).

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