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Re: He's not even a good historian

Posted by Anovagrrl on August 22, 2005 at 08:52:10

In Reply to: He's not even a good historian posted by Memory on August 21, 2005 at 21:00:47:

I have never understood the rationale behind refusing to obtain the accounts of historic events from former members and young adults raised in the group when doing a study of TFI. This is particularly puzzling when the historic events involve former members.

Chancellor makes statements of fact about several former members in his book that are based on information he presumedly received from current members. The reader can only assume he received this information from current members, however, because he doesn't bother to attribute his sources. What is VERY clear to a knowledgeable reader, however, is that he didn't bother to interview the former members about whom he reports unsubstantiated facts.

So yes, I agree with you: Chancellor isn't even a very good historian. This may account for his sense of moral outrage over posts that put him in the same category as Melton and other for-hire academics on the Family payola. Academics who are insecure about their scholarship frequently defend their less-than-stellar work by taking an arrogant posture and obfuscating the disputed issues of scholarship. So what if Chancellor doesn't accept money or sex partners from TFI? The fact that he behaved in a minimally ethical manner doesn't mean he did a rigorous oral history of TFI. But rather than address the substance of the criticism leveled at his work by scholars in the exer community, he defends his apparently vulnerable reputation as an academic with pompous pronouncements about gossip.