The Yale University lecturer who wrote an email that touched off a fierce controversy over racism and free speech has decided not to teach courses there in the future. Erika Christakis, also an associate master at one of the university’s residential colleges, broke the news in an email to Business Insider last week.
In an email to The Washington Post, Ms. Christakis said she respected her students but worried “that the current climate at Yale is not, in my view, conducive to the civil dialogue and open inquiry required to solve our urgent societal problems.”
Ms. Christakis sent an email in October to students that pushed back against another email warning about offensive Halloween costumes: “Is there no room anymore for a child to be a little bit obnoxious … a little bit inappropriate or provocative or, yes, offensive?”
Her email sparked a backlash, and protesters demanded Ms. Christakis’s resignation. Dozens of faculty members responded by signing a letter of support for her and her husband, Nicholas Christakis, a professor of social and natural science who is master of Silliman College.
In a statement on its website, Yale said the university’s leadership was “disappointed that [Ms. Christakis] has chosen not to continue teaching in the spring semester.” The statement added that the lecturer was “welcome to resume teaching anytime at Yale, where freedom of expression and academic inquiry are the paramount principle and practice.”