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Howler of the Month (archive)

Ahmed Abou-Zaid

"Saudi women are pretty pampered. They don't drive; they have drivers and you might think they are deprived of one thing, but they are provided with another. Saudi women are treated as queens in their homes."

Ahmed Abou-Zaid, an economics professor at Eastern Illinois University, speaking on the "Conversation on Middle Eastern Culture" panel; The Daily Eastern News, April 16, 2015. (link to source)

We Couldn't Have Said it Better (archive)

Paul Rivlin

"The desire to avoid an Orientalist bias generated an aversion to making judgments, except in contexts where the Middle East may have outperformed Europe, such as that of agricultural or scientific productivity in the early Middle Ages. As a result, Middle East experts avoid identifying deficiencies and do not explain their causes."

Paul Rivlin, senior research fellow at the Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies at Tel Aviv University and professor in the Interdisciplinary Program in Philosophy and Jewish Thought at Shalem College in Jerusalem; "The Blame Game, Part 2," "Iqtisada: Middle East Economy," 5, no. 3 (March 19, 2015). (link to source)

CAMPUS WATCH, a project of the Middle East Forum, reviews and critiques Middle East studies in North America with an aim to improving them. The project mainly addresses five problems: analytical failures, the mixing of politics with scholarship, intolerance of alternative views, apologetics, and the abuse of power over students. Campus Watch fully respects the freedom of speech of those it debates while insisting on its own freedom to comment on their words and deeds.

The Latest on Campus

Jerusalem Post Article on Zaytuna College [incl. Hatem Bazian]
April 24, 2015 - Fousesquawk Blog

Session Tackles Intricacies of Islamophobia With Professor Juliane Hammer [incl. Lila Abu-Lughod]
April 22, 2015 - The Daily Tar Heel (student newspaper of University of North Carolina)

Panel to Clarify Middle Eastern Beliefs
April 16, 2015 - The Daily Eastern News (student newspaper of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston)

Debating Sharia Law, Digitally [on Intisar A. Rabb]
May-June 2015 - Harvard Magazine

Sheehi's Students Launch Arab American Tribe Blog at William and Mary
April 15, 2015 - William and Mary News

About Face: Pro-Salaita UW Professor Changes Tune After Seeing Anti-Israel Prof in Action [on Steve Salaita]
April 13, 2015 - The Mike Report

Arab Liberals Are To Blame? I Don't Think So, Professor [on Joseph Massad]
April 13, 2015 - The National

Difanis Sets June Hearing for Salaita FOIA Case
April 13, 2015 - The News-Gazette

Joseph Massad Gets a Pass From His Peers at Columbia
April 12, 2015 - Fousesquawk Blog

Islam Boldly Infiltrating America At Alarming Rate [incl. Zaytuna College]
April 12, 2015 - The Jerusalem Post


NYU's Zachary Lockman Signs BDS Petition 'To End Israeli Occupation'

By Cinnamon Stillwell | Tue, 14 Apr 2015, 4:33 PM | Permalink

Zachary Lockman

Zachary Lockman--a professor of Middle Eastern and Islamic studies at New York University (NYU) who, as Campus Watch noted last month, used the opportunity of an unrelated lecture to peddle "Israel Lobby" conspiracy theories that bordered on classical anti-Semitism--is among the Middle East studies faculty who signed an "NYU Out of Occupied Palestine" divestment petition to "end the Israeli occupation." Lockman is #61 on the list; other signatories include:

Benoit Challand, Assistant Professor of Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies

Michael Cole Gilsenan, Professor of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies and Anthropology

Hala Halim, Associate Professor of Comparative Literature & Middle Eastern Studies

Continue to full text of posting...


Massad at Cornell: 'It is the End of the Zionist Colonial Adventure'

By Cinnamon Stillwell | Mon, 13 Apr 2015, 4:43 PM | Permalink

Joseph Massad

Columbia University professor and notorious Israel-basher Joseph Massad recently delivered a speech at Cornell University, in which he declared, "It is the end of the Zionist colonial adventure" and proposed that, instead of working for a two-state solution, the BDS movement continue "boycotting all Israeli academic and cultural institutions . . . until Israel ceases to be a racist state." He also suggested activists employ buzz terms such as "racism," "colonialism," and "occupation" to render BDS more palatable to American and European students. The Cornell Review blog has the details.


Campus Watch on Twitter

By Cinnamon Stillwell | Fri, 10 Apr 2015, 1:55 PM | Permalink

Campus Watch is now on Twitter, where we'll be linking to our articles and blog posts, as well as tweeting about the latest Middle East studies news.

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Brian Edwards of Northwestern: American 'Fear' and 'Racism' Solved by Learning Arabic

By Cinnamon Stillwell | Thu, 9 Apr 2015, 5:04 PM | Permalink

Brian T. Edwards

In a Chicago Tribune op-ed titled "Teach Arabic in Public Schools," Brian T. Edwards, Crown Professor in Middle East Studies and founding director of the Middle East and North African Studies Program at Northwestern University, makes the ludicrous claim that Americans are beset with "anxieties about Arabic language" because of "a widespread fear of foreign languages" and—wait for it—"open and unchecked racism toward Arabs and, by loose association, non-Arab Muslims."

Citing FBI statistics for anti-Islamic hate crimes, Edwards eventually comes to the inane conclusion that, "massive numbers of American students learning Arabic will help advance peace." Given that the latest FBI statistics show that the highest number (60.3 percent) of religiously-motivated hate crimes target Jews, while only 13.7 target Muslims, one could just as easily argue that American public school students should learn Hebrew. We won't hold our breath waiting for Edwards or his "Islamophobia"-obsessed cohorts in the ranks of Middle East studies to start writing op-eds demanding reform to public education in order to fight anti-Semitism.


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