Dr. Cornel West Leaves Harvard University Over Tenure Spat

Dr. Cornel West Leaves Harvard University Over Tenure Spat

Dr. Cornel West has left Harvard University after it balked at a recommendation that his untenured position become a tenured one.

West, a popular and well-known African American Studies professor, progressive activist, and political correspondent, will return to the Union Theological Seminary where he has taught on multiple occasions. West has also taught classes at Yale and Princeton over the course of his career.

West recently told The Boycott Times he grew tired of the hypocrisy and politics he experienced at the Ivy League school saying, “I can only take so much pettiness in terms of ways in which I thought I was disrespected and devalued.”

This isn’t the first time West and Harvard had a disagreement that led to him leaving the university. West left the school in 2002 after a public spat with Lawrence Summers, who became the school’s president in 2001 after serving in the Clinton administration.

West, who once described former President Barack Obama as “A Black mascot of Wall Street oligarchs,” heads to Union Theological Seminary for his fourth stint with the school. His other three stints at Union were from 1977-84, 1987-88, and 2012-16. According to the New York Times, West will teach classes in philosophy, literature, politics, cultural theory, and other subjects.

Rev. Serene Jones, the president of Union Seminary, had nothing but kind words for West.

“We are thrilled to welcome Dr. West back home to Union where he started his teaching career, at this time of momentous challenge—and opportunity, and especially as the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Professor, ” Jones said in a release.

“Dr. West lives and breathes the values that Union aims to instill in all of the future leaders, scholars, ministers, and activists we educate. His esteemed legacy of engaging the most pressing problems facing our world—including racism, poverty, sexism, and so much more—is an inspiration to all, and illustrates the power of faith to create profound change.”