Many faculty retreated into academic specializations and an arcane language that made them irrelevant to the task of defending the university as a public good, except for in some cases a very small audience. This has become more and more clear in the last few years as academics have become so insular, often unwilling or unable to defend the university as a public good, in spite of the widespread attacks on academic freedom, the role of the university as a democratic public sphere, and the increasing reduction of knowledge to a saleable commodity, and students to customers.