Academics don't write for the masses. They don't even write for students. They write for each other. Academic writing is densely dry for the rest of us, kind of sucking the joy out of learning.
I asked a Classics professor why he didn't share his knowledge and write books accessible for everyone. He replied that if he did, his colleagues would no longer take him seriously.
I understand the pressure to conform. Hired as assistant professors they have virtually no independent voice, because after 6 years they must submit themselves to a grueling and soul destroying review of their work. If they pass, they become Associate Professors, with full tenure. If they don't pass, they are fired. Then the successful ones have the choice to come up for another peer review in their career if they want to become full professors.
Don't kid yourself. If any of these tortured souls tried to do something radical before achieving full professor, their peers would become jealous and or judgmental and the younger academic would not be promoted. Silence is a game they must play for many years. But once these scholars have achieved "tenure" they cannot be fired. They have a job for life. When they become full professors, there are no further peer reviews.
Surely some could continue their serious academic writings and still find time to write a popular summary for those of us who don't want to inhale the moldering dust of academic tomes. Well, that was mean of me, wasn't it? Sorry. But books that go unread often make me sneeze.
And knowledge not shared is what my mother would have called a sin and a shame.
I live in a country where intellectuals are considered elitists, distrusted and reviled. In turn, intellectuals look down on the uneducated rabble. Gee, how did that happen? More to the point, how can we change that?
I am so tired of living among people so poorly educated that their only pastime is to drink themselves into oblivion while watching bad TV.