Rashomon Phenomenon as it Relates to Tenure Committees


I felt extreme sorrow, angst, and sympathy for the professor who was denied tenure for unclear reasons. He received excellent student evaluations, was reliable, mixed well with students/colleagues/admins and accepted other duties as assigned without complaint.

I was reminded of Rashomon-Style stories where an identical event is given a different narrative by several individuals, and the accounts differ in ways that are impossible to make sense of or reconcile. For every person, there is a unique opinion, so the findings of Rashomon don’t come as a big surprise.

The aggrieved educator, named Drezner I believe, never really determined the reasons for his dismissal although it was probable that jealously, varying political views, and downright wickedness played a major role. Also the tenure committee surely had wildly varying accounts of Drezner’s skills as a teacher, completely consistent with the Rashomon phenomenon.

His wife was supportive of his tenuous mental state during the entire tenure rejection ordeal at an institution in Chicago I believe. She also deserves kudos for all she does for Asperger’s kids!


2 comments on “Rashomon Phenomenon as it Relates to Tenure CommitteesAdd yours →

  1. Wow, I am sure Juan J. Rojo would read this with great interest! Juan went the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission appeal process route I think. The assistant professor of Spanish at Lafayette College was extremely pissed off and fought his rejection like a tiger! He had tremendous support from his students, but not as much from his colleagues as I recall.

    1. What many of you do not know is how outspoken Rojo was against the policies and performance of the Lafayette College President. Juan never got it through his inflated ego that faculty are expendable and easily replaced.

      The President does not care if Juan goes on a hunger strike, nor do frankly most of his colleagues who wish this whole thing would end as they are sticking their necks out for his immaturity and lack of restraint.

      As intelligent as Juan is, he still has a little of that machismo, Mexican male dominate women, sort of mindset and Alison Byerly is not one to let that type of behavior go unchecked.

Leave a Reply