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Isaac Kamola

Associate Professor of Political Science, Trinity College
Chapter Member: Connecticut SSN
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About Isaac

Kamola's research examines the changing political economy of higher education, and how changes in the funding of universities effect the knowledge produced within them. His most recent work examines how the Koch donor network has manufactured the "campus free speech crisis." He is a co-founder of the Trinity College chapter of the AAUP and runs the Faculty First Responders project, which supports academics who have become targets of right-wing harassment.


In the News

Opinion: "Freedom to Learn and Academic Freedom for All!," Isaac Kamola (with Eli Meyerhoff), Academe Blog, October 11, 2023.
Opinion: "The Attacks on Higher Education in Florida Are Part of a Global Crisis," Isaac Kamola (with Alexander D. Barder and Aida A. Hozic), Le Monde, May 2, 2023.


"Sensationalized Surveillance: Campus Reform and the Targeted Harassment of Faculty" (with Samantha McCarthy). New Political Science 44, no. 2 (2022): 227-247.

Examines Campus Reform, a right-wing website that monitors academics and institutions of higher education. Argues that Campus Reform is part of a well-funded and well-organized panoptic network that engages in the sensationalized surveillance of faculty.

"Free Speech and Koch Money: Manufacturing A Campus Culture War" (with Ralph Wilson) (Pluto Press, 2021).

Demonstrates that the so-called campus free speech crisis engulfing campuses is not simply a spirited debate over the relative openness of colleges and universities to conservative ideas. Argues that it is actually a manufactured crisis, one funded by political operatives and intentionally designed to achieve specific political outcomes.

"Dear Administrators: To Protect Your Faculty from Right-Wing Attacks, Follow the Money" Journal of Academic Freedom 10 (2019).

Discusses recent media controversies concerning public comments made by college faculty, highlighting that these attacks follow a common script originating from a few political and media outlets. Examines ten high-profile attacks on faculty to demonstrate the common script employed, and delves into the specific case of Campus Reform’s attack on Professor Johnny Williams at Trinity College in 2017, examining how college administrators focused on the content of Williams’ posts rather than the political motivations behind the attack.