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
Turkey Cracks Down on Academics, Anti-Israel Scholars Silent [incl. MESA]
Scholarly Groups Speak Out on Turkey's Purges [incl. MESA]
Amir Khadir on Hunger Strike for Iranian Prisoner Homa Hoodfar
Internet Hunt: Where's "Waldo" (Anti-Israel Academic Boycotters Boycotting Turkey)?
Hey, BDS-Loving Professors Watching the Assault on Academic Freedom in Turkey: Why So Quiet?
Are Turkey's Universities a Legitimate Target for an Academic Boycott?
'Unprecedented' Purge in Turkey [incl. Kent Schull]
Will Anti-Israel Academic Boycotters Now Also Boycott Turkish Universities?
Lawyers Without Borders, Quebec Bar Pledge Support For Hoodfar
Where Are the Academic Boycotts of Turkey?
By Winfield Myers | Thu, 21 Jul 2016, 2:05 PM | Permalink
The Middle East Studies Association (MESA), joined by several other disciplinary organizations, has finally issued a letter condemning the actions against Turkish academics, days after the purges began. But while MESA et al. condemn the persecutions, they never mention Turkish president Erdogan by name, nor do they note (much less condemn) the reason behind the purges: to pave the way for the Islamization of all of Turkish society, long a goal of Erdogan and his AKP colleagues and followers. MESA and its co-signers willfully ignore these inconvenient facts lest they disavow their decades-long romance with anti-Western "moderate Islamists." One supposes they're still searching for a motive.
By Winfield Myers | Thu, 21 Jul 2016, 11:46 AM | Permalink
Middle East studies professors regularly accuse CW and other organizations of "McCarthyism," an ahistorical, intellectually lazy charge intended to silence critics. Yet days into an ongoing purge of Turkish academics, including 1,500+ deans and four university rectors, the Middle East Studies Association (MESA) has yet to condemn the latest moves by Turkish president Erdogan, whose "moderate Islamism" US profs have long championed as a path to democracy. Will genuine (not imagined) "loyalty oaths" for Turkish academics finally grab MESA's attention?
By Winfield Myers | Wed, 20 Jul 2016, 4:59 PM | Permalink
Anthropologists who study the Middle East were once inspired by "a scientific spirit to discover the cultures of the region and their dynamics" argues Philip Carl Salzman in the latest Campus Watch Research. Yet contemporary anthropology has been infected by "postcolonial discourse," which has injected "a dangerous, self-contradictory nihilism that rejects the possibility of objective Truth toward which we may move." Salzman's critique of a discipline he has long called home appears at the Daily Caller:
To read the rest of this essay, please click here.
By Winfield Myers | Tue, 19 Jul 2016, 4:53 PM | Permalink
Turkish president Erdogan's post-coup purges--including almost 1,600 university deans and 24,000 teachers--are putting American profs of Middle East studies in a bind. For years they've praised Erdogan precisely for his Islamist credentials. What will they say now that he's clearly bent on destroying the last remnants of Kemalism and, with it, Turkish civil society? Will they turn a blind eye to mass executions and the formation of an Islamist dictatorship? Academics are now barred from leaving Turkey; will the Middle East Studies Association (MESA) object?
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