Workplace Bullying in Higher Education: Some Legal Background
The United States Supreme Court has recognized that “[t]he college classroom[,] with its surrounding environs[,] is peculiarly the ‘marketplace of ideas’ ” ( Healy v. James , 1972, p. 180). Academic freedom is the cornerstone of higher education. It enables professors to effectively educate their students, using independence and their own judgment, and to contribute to the marketplace of ideas. Professors engage in unique activities, such as the publishing of original scholarship and faculty governance, which demand that they be unmoored from most restraints regarding their thoughts on any number of topics and how they choose to express those thoughts. The free, unfettered exchange of ideas, and constant rigorous, if not rancorous, debate, are seen by some as hallmarks of an institution that is fl ourishing. This makes allegations of bullying in the context of higher education particularly thorny and diffi cult to negotiate.