Princeton University intends to terminate classicist Joshua Katz, Cotsen Professor in the Humanities, The Washington Free Beacon reported. Katz and his supporters say he’s being targeted for comments he’s made about racial justice, including in a 2020 essay in which he referred to a Black student group as a “small local terrorist organization.” Princeton reportedly is seeking to relieve Katz of his tenure over a sexual relationship he had with an undergraduate in the mid-2000s, which Princeton investigated in 2018. Katz was sanctioned (but not fired) for the relationship following that investigation, but Princeton reportedly reopened the case against Katz in 2021 after new allegations came to light.
According to the Free Beacon, the former student with whom Katz had a relationship did not participate in the 2018 inquiry but did work with investigators in 2021, alleging that Katz had sexually harassed her. The harassment claim was reportedly dropped, but Princeton found new violations of policy, including that Katz had discouraged the student from seeking counseling. Katz denies the new findings and says he’s subject to “double jeopardy.” Princeton declined to comment on the case Thursday.