University of Iowa President Sally Mason has joined more than 200 other college and university presidents in opposing the American Studies Association’s boycott of Israeli academic institutions.
As the foundation for Jewish life on campus, Hillel thanks President Mason for her leadership. Hillel also strongly urges the UI’s Department of American Studies to distance itself from the ASA’s boycott and, if necessary, to resign its membership in the ASA.
The boycott of Israeli academic institutions, and of individuals affiliated with those institutions, suppresses the free exchange of ideas on which the scholarly enterprise depends. It punishes individuals and institutions for a political situation they may have no role in sustaining and, indeed, may actually oppose. Hillel supports open debate and respects the historical and contemporary aspirations of all of the parties to the conflict. The boycott has exactly the opposite effect.
Gerald L. Sorokin,
University of Iowa Louis Shulman Hillel