Middle East studies in the News
Now, More Than Ever, Scholarly Groups Must Engage in the Political Arena
by Neve Gordon
Since I am only familiar with his work on American poetry and cultural studies, I did not realize that Cary Nelson, former president of the American Association of University Professors, is a member of the Middle East Studies Association. But, then, last week I received an email from him encouraging me, "as a fellow MESA member," to vote against a proposal to remove the word "non-political" from the association's bylaws.
That vote, which closes on March 15, will also determine if the association adds a clause reaffirming its commitment to operate "in accordance with its status as a 501(c)(3) scientific, educational, literary, and charitable organization." Even though the word "non-political" does not appear in the bylaws of most academic associations in the United States, Nelson believes that the "transformation of MESA into a political, rather than academic, organization will have multiple consequences," as he wrote in an email inviting me to sign an open letter recommending against the change.
[Ed. Note: To read the rest of this article, please click here.]Note: Articles listed under "Middle East studies in the News" provide information on current developments concerning Middle East studies on North American campuses. These reports do not necessarily reflect the views of Campus Watch and do not necessarily correspond to Campus Watch's critique.
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