Statement Regarding False and Inaccurate Reports Concerning Professor Derek Hook
In addition to Duquesne University's statement below, the Reuters media fact-check department has published the following article on the false accusations made against Professor Derek Hook: Fact Check-Duquesne University Professor Did Not Endorse Suicide in Lecture.
The statement attributed to Professor Hook is ridiculous and reckless. He did not make a statement advocating anything like what was suggested. In fact, he said that the statement in question was "crazy."
Professor Hook also said that the provocateur who used this example was wrong in suggesting any such radical action. The words being circulated were simply lifted out of context to distort the actual comments. Saying that Professor Hook called for anything like the words in question is false.
Duquesne University is a Catholic institution that condemns any suggestion that suicide is to be advocated or endorsed in any form.
Professor Hook's presentation was part of an invited online talk Professor Hook gave to Baltimore-based American Association for Psychoanalysis in Clinical Social Work (AAPCSW), an international association for psychoanalytic social workers. It happened in June. While some of the content in the recording certainly contained troubling elements if taken alone, the full discussion only references the work of another person (Terblanche Delport, as the slides indicate) and the extreme proposition in the context of post-Apartheid South Africa.
Professor Hook did not advocate taking the extreme measures Delport described. Professor Hook is not advocating, nor does he advocate, violence. His effort to understand how extreme thought is developed is the point of the presentation.
Professor's Hook's expertise is in psychoanalysis, and his work considers psychoanalytic dimensions of racism in America and South Africa. He is a highly respected expert, and it is disappointing that his efforts to understand and challenge ideas that are admittedly extreme are being shared out of context to falsely illustrate advocacy for extreme behavior.
Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and horizon-expanding education. A campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, Duquesne prepares students by having them work alongside faculty to discover and reach their goals. The University's academic programs, community service, and commitment to equity and opportunity in the Pittsburgh region have earned national acclaim.
It's time for bigger goals. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.