University Of Sydney Poetry Professor Barry Spurr Has Resigned After Offensive Emails

St Johns Oval at Sydney University. Mark Kolbe/Getty Images

Barry Spurr (pictured right), the Professor of Poetry at the University of Sydney, has resigned following a series of emails said to denigrate women, races and religions.

Spur, a contributor to the national English curriculum review, was facing calls to step down after New Matilda published emails from him which used words including bogans”, “fatsoes”, “Mussies”, “darky” and “Chinky-poos” as well as referring to Prime Minister Tony Abbott as an “Abo-lover”.

Professor Spurr says it was done in jest, and was part of “a whimsical linguistic game” he had with a colleague trying to outdo one another in extreme statements.

“These statements are not reflections of my views or his,” he said.

The University of Sydney today announced that Professor Barry Spurr has submitted his resignation and the university has accepted it.

“At Professor Spurr’s request, the University will provide no further comment on this matter,” a spokesman said.

The University of Sydney suspended Spurr’s employment following the allegations.

Then a spokesman said: “Racist, sexist or offensive language is not tolerated at the University of Sydney. The expectations for our staff and affiliates in respect of their professional and personal conduct are clearly set out in the University’s Code of Conduct.”

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