Arizona has found the Tuscon Unifed School District’s Mexican American studies program in violation of a ruling that prohibits courses and classes that ‘promote the overthrow of the United States government, promote resentment toward a race or class of people, are designed primarily for pupils of a particular ethnic group or advocate ethnic solidarity instead of the treatment of pupils as individuals.’
Along with William Shakespeare’s The Tempest, banned books include Rethinking Columbus: The Next 500 Years, Pedagogy of the Oppressed by Brazilian educator Paolo Freire, Occupied America: A History of Chicanos’ by Rodolfo Acuña, Chicano!: The History of the Mexican Civil Rights Movement by Arturo Rosales, 500 Years of Chicano History in Pictures, by Elizabeth Martinez and Critical Race Theory a textbook by Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic.
If you’ve been to college in the last decade, you’ve probably dealt with “e-reserves”—book chapters and articles made available electronically to students in particular classes, usually through the university library. But how much material can a professor upload before having to pay a licensing fee?
The issue is notoriously murky; many schools require that printed “course packs” be licensed, though uploading those pieces separately to an e-reserves site doesn’t always trigger licensing. Professors we know have resorted to various tricks—if limited to five e-reserves before having to take a license, they will upload five documents, wait until students have read them, then delete the first five and upload five more. It’s not just about the money, which students would have to cover; it’s about the hassle. E-reserve and course pack licensing can require several months of lead time, and not all professors are (*cough*) ready for an entire semester that far in advance.
This makes publishers unhappy, and some have sued.