The SU’s motion on hate speech has been misinterpreted

Image Description: Students in academic dress outside the Exam Schools, Oxford. The Oxford SU’s recent motion to issue an amendment to make lecture and tutorial content “prejudicial on the grounds of race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, cisgender/transgender status, or socioeconomic background” non-mandatory has sparked much controversy in the press. I have several concerns […]

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Ritual and wellness in lockdown

Historians, cultural commentators, and sociologists have long wrangled over the extent of secularisation in our society. Does yoga count as a religion? Is listening to Songs of Praise the same as attending church? In reading your horoscope, are you engaging in a new spiritualistic society? Are ‘new age movements’ hippy-dippy rubbish, or truly meaningful? And, […]

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In defence of academic liberty

A Student Council motion recently passed arguing that the current legal definition of what constitutes ‘hate speech’ is not enough. While the motion has good intentions, it is severely flawed and strikes in the wrong direction. The resolution sought to push for university policy to also prohibit hate speech regarding gender identity, socio-economic status, and […]

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Student-led ‘Oxbuddy’ can’t address the access problem alone

‘Oxbuddy’ aims to connect Oxford students with potential applicants from historically underrepresented schools.  Since the launch of the student-led scheme only last week, over 250 student volunteers have signed up.  These volunteers will give advice and answer questions from prospective applicants. However, this initiative only highlights the university’s failure to recognise the root of the […]

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Open letter protests university’s plans for graduation ‘in absentia’

An open letter calling for changes to Oxford University’s plans to have students graduate without attending an official ceremony has attracted over 2000 signatures. The open letter calls for graduation ceremonies to be postponed or conducted in smaller groups, rather than cancelled outright. Graduation ceremonies meant to be taking place on the 2nd and 9th […]

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Debate: positive discrimination prevents meritocracy

Image description: Magdalen College Improving access to students from  more disadvantaged backgrounds has rightly become the  priority for Oxbridge admissions. After all, no young person should be discriminated against “on the basis of the class they were born into”. The upper echelons of higher education should be open to all inspiring, budding young intellectuals and […]

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