The Comparative History of Ideas Department is deeply committed to fostering a critically engaged and supportive community where all students, staff, and faculty are treated with respect and care. We strive to create an inclusive space where difference is valued, and people from a diverse range of backgrounds and orientations—including ability, gender, national, religious, sexual, racial, political, and more—are welcomed and able to thrive. We recognize the power of stories and personal journeys as crucial for creating such an engaged and reflective community. CHID emphasizes the importance of acknowledging and actively addressing barriers to knowledge and education, and of making visible the ongoing dynamics of settler colonialism, patriarchy, and other structures of oppression that continue to marginalize, minoritize and invisibilize various gender, racial, national and ethnic identities. We recognize our collective responsibility in addressing and mitigating those dynamics to create the conditions in which our learning community can flourish. Accordingly, teaching, research and hiring in CHID are informed and guided by these principles.
Inspired by the work of Federico Ardila, professor of mathematics at San Francisco State University, we offer the following axioms:
Axiom 1—Intellectual potential is distributed equally among different groups, irrespective of geographic, demographic, political, and economic boundaries.
Axiom 2—Everyone can have joyful, meaningful, and empowering intellectual experiences.
Axiom 3—Intellectual inquiry is a powerful, malleable tool that can be shaped and used differently by various communities to serve their needs.
Axiom 4—Every student, staff, and faculty member of our community deserves to be treated with dignity and respect.