NEW YORK (AP) – Columbia University says it’s reviewing a science class in which a professor stripped to his underwear and showed 9/11 video footage during a lecture on quantum mechanics.
The Frontiers of Science class on Monday morning with Professor Emlyn Hughes also included two other participants dressed in black, one of whom used a sword to destroy a stuffed animal.
Video of the event was posted to Bwog, the online home of Columbia’s monthly undergraduate magazine.
It starts with the professor stripping with his back to the students as music plays and an image of a skull is projected on a screen. Later, two stuffed animals are placed on stools, one of which is stabbed by a person with a sword. In the background, a video shows the fall of the World Trade Center and an image of Osama bin Laden.
A female student watching Hughes could be heard repeating, “What is happening?” as the performance went on.
It ended with the professor returning to the stage.
“In order to learn quantum mechanics, you have to strip to your raw, erase all the garbage from your brain and start over again,” Hughes said.
The professor didn’t respond to an email from The Associated Press seeking comment.
In a statement, the university said, “Universities are committed to maintaining a climate of academic freedom, in which the faculty members are given the widest possible latitude in their teaching and scholarship. However, the freedoms traditionally accorded the faculty carry corresponding responsibilities.”
It added, “While one must exercise caution in judging excerpts from a lecture or short presentations from an entire course outside of their full context, the appropriate academic administrators are currently reviewing the facts of this particular presentation in quantum mechanics.”
Follow Deepti Hajela at
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
- The virus that keeps head and neck cancers on the rise
- State Fair ‘Kid Reporter’ has all the angles covered
- 4 important things to know about timeshare maintenance fees
- Signs of delayed car crash injuries
- The truth about sports concussions
- The Alzheimer's epidemic: Facts you need to know
- The season is here, keep your Fantasy Football team strong all season
- 8 TV shows you can't miss this fall
- Football is here: 6 tips to make this your best season ever
- Gameday recipes and beers to match
- 6 reasons the Cardinals are driven to win the Super Bowl
- The Pac-12 football season nears kickoff
- Tips to get ready for a pain-free golf season
- Protect your family with these 7 home security features
- How to train like an Olympic swimmer
- 2016 Olympics: A guide to must-see TV events
- The bride's guide to feeling your best on your wedding day
- Deciding when you need knee surgery
- Celebrating Fourth of July is much cooler in these AZ towns
- Top ten road trip bathrooms in America
- Six things causing a pain in your neck
- 5 things to make your summer move easier
- Three elements of a strong timeshare exit guarantee
- Stretches and exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome
- The best Major League ballparks have their own personality
- Comparing the best regular seasons: The '96 Bulls and '16 Warriors
- 3 Arizona road trips and the vehicles to get you there
- Colon cancer is preventable. Check these signs and symptoms to stay healthy.
- 6 of the biggest skin cancer myths
- Affordable small home makeover ideas