After a few critical remarks from conservative commentators, the government’s plan to ban gender studies MA courses is now splitting the media along the usual political divide. Opposition columnists call the planned decree dictatorial, while pro-government authors deem gender studies a useless subject.
In Népszava, Tamás Bihari flatly dismisses the official explanation according to which the labour market does not need gender studies graduates. He suspects that the real reason is to be found among the ‘dictatorial tendencies’ of the government, as dictatorships traditionally mistrust the social sciences because they diagnose social realities.
On Mérce, Zoltán Gábor Szűcs also describes the official explanation as irrelevant, because he believes higher education is does not have to produce ready made employees, but educated and intelligent adults who are capable of thinking autonomously. On the other hand, the left-liberal author also cautions against defining on ideological grounds what should be taught at universities.
On Mandiner, György Szalma writes that every penny spent on gender classes is wasted. He thinks gender studies is only an important issue for a tiny minority and no public money should be allotted to satisfy them. He remarks that this is not the only useless course on offer and hopes the ‘liberal arts’ course ‘will soon follow suite’.
On Pesti Srácok, Gyula T. Máté finds a direct link between gender studies and the LGBTQ movement but admits that people have e constitutional right to embrace or believe in them. However, he suggests, ‘this is a political issue’. The way he sees it, Socialists have ‘betrayed the working people’, while liberals ‘have commercialized human rights’ and the two have now found in LGBTQ issues and gender studies an ultimate cause to justify their existence.