Summer 2019 was tumultuous for communication studies, the field that is my academic home. A few morally and ethically sound decisions instituted by the National Communication Association's (NCA) Executive Committee triggered a fierce debate about the relationship between academic merit and identity politics. The idea of what counts as legitimate, rigorous, and thus meritorious work is not unique to communication studies. Determining what counts as “good research” in any discipline is contested. What determines the worth of an academic idea in any field is controlled by its gatekeepers, and in disciplines in the West, they have always been white. Academic gatekeepers control borders by deeming what is and what is not anointed as “knowledge.” Moreover, the...

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