Thought I would share a few comments that I left on the last post surrounding the exchange in Reviews In American History between Professors McDaniel and Stauffer. First, I am in no way attempting to alleviate Stauffer of his having to take responsibility for his outrageous charge of homophobia. Stauffer must now take ownership of what is a well-documented pattern of behavior when it comes to working out professional differences with fellow historians.
That said, I have to wonder whether the editors at RiAH dropped the ball on this one. Why didn’t they approach Stauffer about his response to McDaniel? Did they approach Stauffer about it? Both the charge of homophobia made against McDaniel and the commentary regarding the website page on how to manage large reading loads have absolutely nothing at all to do with the substance of his critical review. It’s just the kind of review that I assume the editors at the journal are looking for. I would love to know why they believed it was appropriate to print Stauffer’s review in its entirety. As I pointed out in a comment, isn’t there a danger of the journal losing the opportunity to work with certain historians who might now justifiably be worried about being treated in a similar manner? This whole incident could have been so easily avoided.
What do you think?