Date: Thu, 22 Jun 1995 13:15:56 +0100


Subject: Re: A Dumb Question about the NEH

In the midst of a long stretch of Republican administration and under the

auspices of the much reviled Lynne Cheney, NEH funded my own modest study

that led to the publication of "The English-Only Question: An Official

Language for Americans?" (Yale, 1990). You would think the topic would have

been too controversial for the supposedly politically-tainted NEH to touch,

especially considering my argument that official language legislation was

misguided and wouldn't work, but that issue never came up in my dealings

with NEH.

I doubt very much that a body like the Illinois Humanities Council would

have wanted to fund my project, and certainly not at the level of funding I

needed. Illinois is not big on giving released time to professors for just

sitting and thinking and writing. How does it benefit the citizens of the

state, they ask, to pay for all that down time? Besides, my work on

English-only legislation in Illinois was not particularly flattering to the

state pols.

So, for what it's worth, I'm all for NEH

and commercial-free public broadcasting.



Dennis Baron debaron[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]

Department of English office: 217-333-2392

University of Illinois fax: 217-333-4321

608 South Wright Street home: 217-384-1683

Urbana, Illinois 61801