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Incoming Auburn U. prof won’t say school chant because it contains the word ‘war’

A recently hired Auburn University professor took to social media this week to let everyone know he would not say the school’s “battle cry” of “War Eagle” … because it contains the word “war.”

Jesse Goldberg will be joining the Alabama institution this coming academic year as a “lecturer of African American & American Literature and Composition in the English department,” according to Yellowhammer.

On his now-protected Twitter account, Goldberg wrote “I know it’s just a mascot but I’m never gonna be able to call myself a ‘war eagle’ or say ‘go war eagles.’ Sorry.

“I can’t bring myself to enthusiastically and sincerely use a slogan/greeting/cultural signal with ‘war’ as a primary descriptor. Yeah I know I’m being a party pooper but it’s the kind of language thing that sticks with me.”

Goldberg might have done a little research into his new employer; according to Auburn’s website, “War Eagle” is not a mascot. As noted, it’s the school’s chant/battle cry.

The prof’s Twitter bio reads “Lecturer @ Auburn U | Black Studies, Critical Prison Studies, Queer Theory, American Literature | Abolitionist | martial artist | views are mine | he/him/his” and his account includes this background image:

The official Auburn Twitter account noticed its new hire’s tweets and responded thusly:


As you might expect, Goldberg’s remarks about the school chant weren’t greeted very cordially by the Auburn community:

And the prof responded in kind:

Goldberg also noted it’s a “[g]ood thing I’ve been training in martial arts even longer than I’ve been training in anti-racism, I guess.”

Read the Yellowhammer article.

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IMAGES: Shutterstock.com; Yellowhammer, Twitter screenshots

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Dave has been writing about education, politics, and entertainment for over 18 years, including a stint at the popular media bias site Newsbusters. He is a retired educator with over 25 years of service and is a member of the National Association of Scholars. Dave holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Delaware.