Tag: Russell Berman

Russell Berman is against one-sided panels…

So the American Anthropological Association is hosting a panel at its annual conference in December titled “BOYCOTTING ISRAELI INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER EDUCATION ABRIDGES ACADEMIC FREEDOM“. Number of anthropologists on the panel: 0. Number of pro-boycott voices on the panel: 0. Number of anti-boycott voices: 5. Personally, I have no problem with a one-sided panel like this. But you know who should have a problem with a one-sided panel like this? Stanford comp lit scholar and former president of the MLA Russell Berman. Back in January, Berman told Scott Jaschik of Inside Higher Ed that he objected to the allegedly one-sided nature of a panel at the MLA that was exploring the question of BDS. According to Jaschik: He [Berman] said […]

The New McCarthyites: BDS, Its Critics, and Academic Freedom

As the attacks on the BDS movement and the ASA boycott escalate, the arguments grow wilder. It’s no longer enough, it seems, to make unfounded claims that the academic boycott violates academic freedom. The new line of march is that mere advocacy of the boycott is itself a violation of academic freedom. What’s more, it’s not crazies who are peddling this claim; as Haaretz reports, it’s coming from the heart of the academic establishment. “The mere calling for a boycott will impede the free flow of ideas,” Russell Berman, a comparative literature professor at Stanford University and a past Modern Language Association president, said on the conference call. “The calling of a boycott will have a chilling effect on academic life.” […]