Dec. 23, 2013
I am dismayed that members of the American Studies Association have voted to boycott Israel. Their action is misguided. Academic boycotts are almost always bad policy. Scholarly engagement sustains learning and helps to build liberal democratic values. I accordingly believe that American universities should continue to work constructively with scholars and institutions throughout the world, regardless of whether we admire or dislike the governments under which they operate. And, whatever one thinks of boycotts in general, to single out Israel alone is indefensible. I thus agree fully with the statement issued by the Association of American Universities, which has strongly opposed the boycott.