When have our perspectives changed to feel the need to bash the smart guys? In anti-intellectualism: Why We Hate the Smart Kids, a piece written by Grant Penrod, the debate upon why intellectuals these days aren’t given their credentials, is argued. Penrod’s argument is focused around why society chooses to build up so much hostility against those who value grades and high scores, using a number of online website comments that highlight how others feel towards these “geeks” and “nerds”.
It is almost a relatively relatable subject matter for many, especially teenagers in high school. Penrod states that, “The idea of the ‘geek’ or ‘nerd’… is not a pleasant one”(Penrod 692). In other words, we all have a blatant idea of being this student who is outcasted for showing effort or concern in his or her studies, resulting in a drop in popularity so to speak. Now, this doesn’t mean that being smart and acknowledging it is always going to result in being outcasted, but it’s a matter of how far you take it. Giving up the opportunity to have a social life beyond the books is what earns you the hostility.
Penrod explains it is, “the image of intellectualism [that] is disliked as anti-social”(692). This quote in particular stood to be very insightful to me in more than one way. In my opinion it explains that it isn’t about being smart and embracing it, but being smart and letting it consume you as if nothing else is important.