Another day, another scare story about that poorly-defined phantom of “wokeness” invading the dreaming spires. This time it’s the University of Chester, where, we are informed by the Mail, Telegraph and other doughty defenders of high culture, a trigger warning about “gender, race, sexuality, class and identity” was appended to Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Not so, counters the university; it was a general warning, which also applies to the works of Philip Pullman and Suzanne Collins.
So that’s all right then. Unless you think it odd that undergraduates on an Eng Lit course should spend quite so long reading what are, essentially, books for kids. That said, I’m reading Frank Furedi’s Where Have All The Intellectuals Gone?, which points out that many undergraduates can go a year without reading a whole book. So maybe the Chester students’ workload is unusually rigorous.