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MI Responds: Harvard President Claudine Gay Resigns after Plagiarism Accusations 

Education Higher Ed

City Journal first broke the story of extensive academic dishonesty 

New York, NY – Today—following reports of consistent academic plagiarism first published by the Manhattan Institute’s in-house publication, City Journal—Harvard President Claudine Gay resigned. Manhattan Institute senior fellow and City Journal contributing editor Christopher F. Rufo, who co-authored that original piece, has since played a pivotal role in the national conversation about Gay’s academic integrity and leadership.

City Journal has also contributed to the public understanding of the changing ideological climate at Harvard and other elite universities, including the deep interrelationship between progressive racial orthodoxy and the rise of campus antisemitism. Heather Mac Donald’s “The Academy at a Crossroads” (Part IPart II) detailed how the rise of DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) bureaucracies has stifled free speech and fostered an anti-Western ethos that is increasingly embedded in the curriculum.
The Manhattan Institute’s director of constitutional studies, Ilya Shapiro, has also been at the forefront of calling out the troubling state of affairs at Harvard and other elite universities, and offers the following commentary on her resignation: 

“The resignation of Harvard’s embattled president doesn’t end the school’s troubles. Indeed, it doesn’t even end the plagiarism scandal, because the Harvard Corporation still has to answer for sweeping the initial allegations under the rug and hiring a law firm to threaten journalists who had the scoop. The larger problems of a toxic campus culture and bureaucratic bloat that stifle open inquiry and free discourse remain, and Harvard is by no means alone in that mess.

Claudine Gay, a middling academic from a privileged background elevated for her politically correct thoughts, epitomizes the illiberal takeover of higher ed—valuing DEI, identity politics, and activism over truth-seeking, intellectual merit, and education. The aftermath of Hamas’s attack and the university presidents’ disastrous performance at a congressional hearing looking into campus antisemitism together exposed the rot in academia. It doesn’t take long to destroy reputations built over decades and centuries, so the main question now is whether Harvard and its peers are willing to ‘do the work’ to restore their tarnished institutions.” 

Ilya Shapiro is a senior fellow and director of constitutional studies at the Manhattan Institute. For media requests, please contact press officer Nicolas Abouchedid at

Christopher F. Rufo is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and a contributing editor of City Journal. For media requests, please contact his chief of staff, Armen Tooloee, at 

Heather Mac Donald is the Thomas W. Smith Fellow at the Manhattan Institute and a contributing editor of City Journal. For media requests, please contact press officer Grace Twehous at

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