When CUNY Hired Lillian Hellman

In response to my Petraeusgate posts, Ken Sherrill, who’s a professor emeritus of political science at Hunter College, sent me this email:

Around my first year at Hunter (1967-68)  the Dean hired Lillian Hellman as a visiting professor for a purpose like this. It turned out that Hellman hated the students and vice-versa. I’m trying to remember how the plug got pulled. In any case, while I don’t know if she was hired full-time and given a one course load or if she was hired as an adjunct, I’m pretty sure Hellman was paid normal rates.




  1. Arthur Berney July 6, 2013 at 4:00 am | #

    As I noted earlier I was outraged as a retired professor, who taught a full range of courses, but earned far less than a City College was ready to pay for One Course. I think it is time to place a cap on the outsized tendency to “worship” the famous. There are thousands of great scientists, professors, doctors, etc. who are not famous, but are more deserving of invitations to teach courses. Private Universities with enormous endowments have the money to indulge themselves, but City Colleges, with low tuition rates ought not be allowed to squander public funds.

    There are three possibilities for ending this fiasco. CUNY can withdraw its offer, with due apologies; or CUNY can seek to tap wealthy contributors to pay the General’s fees; Or the General can offer to teach the course for a dollar.

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