Blame the university presses

More on Ian Buruma’s departure from the NYRB, in the National Post:

A former editor at the New York Review of Books says he stands by his decision to publish a controversial essay written by disgraced former radio host Jian Ghomeshi.

Ian Buruma has told Vrij Nederland, a Dutch magazine, that it is ironic that he has lost his job after publishing a theme issue about #MeToo offenders who had been convicted on social media, but not in court.

Well, you could also say it is ironic that a man decided to run a story about a man who, several women claimed, got a good deal too rough during sex. You can say anything is ironic. I for one keep finding it “ironic” that so many men are more interested in the complaints of men who are told to stop assaulting women than they are in the women who say they were assaulted. I say potato, you say hasn’t he suffered enough.

The essay sparked an online backlash who said the former CBC radio host should not have been given such a prestigious platform to write an unchallenged first-person piece.

Buruma says he was not fired from the prestigious literary magazine, but felt forced to resign after it became clear that university publishers who advertise in the Review of Books were threatening a boycott.

The BBC:

Ian Buruma, 66, had been editor of the New York Review of Books for 16 months.

His interview with Slate magazine defending the publication, drew outraged on social media.

He told the publication: “In a court of law he was acquitted, and there is no proof he committed a crime.”

He continues: “The exact nature of his behaviour – how much consent was involved – I have no idea, nor is it really my concern.”

Mr Buruma says the point of the article is to discuss the fallout and “social opprobrium” that follows such a case.

He says: “My interest in running this piece is the point of view of somebody who has been pilloried in public opinion and what somebody like that feels about it. It was not run as a piece to exonerate him.”

Not to exonerate, but to invite sympathy, interest, concern…while ignoring the women he got a little too forceful with. We do wonder why so much curiosity about him and so zero about them.

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