Sunday, February 23, 2014

Professor Lisa Duggan and the Academic Boycott of Israel

I'm getting a kick out of this posting at Israel Matzav, "American Studies Association President-elect holding 'secret' anti-Israel conference at NYU." And following the links takes us to Elder of Ziyon, "ASA's president-elect hosting SECRET anti-Israel conference at NYU (Zionists not welcome)."

Again, it's pretty hilarious. It turns out that Lisa Duggan, who is a Professor of Social and Cultural Analysis at NYU's Department of Social and Cultural Analysis (which means its a department of whatever the f-k its professors want to drone on about), has advertised an NYU American Studies Program titled "Circuits of Influence: U.S., Israel, & Palestine." (Clicking around we find Professor Duggan's also affiliated with NYU's Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality, which "encourages students to question the meanings of 'male' and 'female,' as well as of sexual norms, in both Western and non-Western societies." Lulz.)

In any case, there's an Eventbrite page where you can buy tickets for the conference, although Professor Duggan's trying to keep the conference on the down low, as can be seen from her Facebook posting:

 photo duggan_zps825f35bb.png

As noted at Edler of Ziyon:
The conference will have the usual obscene Israel-bashing that one would expect from the ASA,with speakers from Adalah-NY, Students for Justice in Palestine, and "Jewish Voice for Peace."

Indeed, the entire conference seems to be made up to justify the unjustifiable boycott of Israel voted on by the ASA and condemned by hundreds of colleges and universities.
Yeah, well. The same old story, blah blah.

More at Algemeiner, "NYU Prof to Head ASA, Supports Israel Boycott; NY Lawmakers Threaten to Withdraw State Aid," and "Forbes Investigative Journalist Rips NYU President Over ‘Vanilla’ Response to ASA Boycott." No surprise, but it turns out Professor Duggan's a terror-coddler. (And go right to the piece at Forbes, from NYU alumnus and Forbes Contributing Editor Richard Behar, "Open Letter to NYU's President: Why The American Studies Assn.'s Israel Boycott Makes Me Ashamed to Be An Alumnus."

Plus, at Cathy Young argued in November at Newsday:
The boycott’s agenda is to make Israel a pariah state. There has been much debate on whether the blatant double standard of such ostracism is rooted in anti-Jewish bias. The bias here is anti-Western: the Israel-hating left sees Israel as an outpost of Western and American imperialism oppressing a Third World people. However, anti-Israel animus often does overlap with anti-Semitism, as the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights recently noted.

Whatever its motive, the anti-Israel boycott is an affront to the true spirit of both political and intellectual liberalism. This movement should be opposed not only by Israel’s supporters, but also by anyone concerned with the state of the American academy.
As readers know, the public outrage and pushback over the ASA's academic boycott of Israel is ongoing, although this attempt to hold a secret "Circuits of Influence" conference is a new, troubling development. So, folks can go to NYU's page for Leadership and University Administration and follow the page links for the college president and other administrators. I'm going to send them an email in the morning and I'm encouraging readers to do so as well. Let's see if we can shine a spotlight on this secret conference the university is hosting, obviously in violation of the public trust, if not New York state law.

Added: Don't miss William Jacobson, at Legal Insurrection, "Vicious and Deceptive anti-Israel Propaganda Hate Week starts."