NPR

Professor Cancels Course On Hate Speech Amid Contention Over His Use Of Slur

After some students walked out of Lawrence Rosen's class at Princeton last week, debate has raged over the appropriate way to handle hate speech in the classroom.

Editor's note: This post refers frequently to the use of a racial slur.

Professor Emeritus Lawrence Rosen opened his course last week with a question. The anthropologist, who has spent four decades teaching at Princeton University, was introducing a class called Cultural Freedoms: Hate Speech, Blasphemy, and Pornography — and his question was meant to shock.

"What is worse," he asked students last Tuesday, according to, "a white man punching a black man, or a white man calling a black man a n*****?"

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