The following open letter was issued on August 12 to oral historians and scholars planning to participate in the June 2014 International Conference on Oral History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The letter is signed by over 200 scholars and community oral historians and counting; and is endorsed by Academic and Cultural Boycott Campaigns, AURDIP (France), BAB (Germany), BOYCOTT! (Israel), BRICUP (UK), InCACBI (India), PACBI (Palestine), PBAI (Spain), USACBI (USA) and by the Alternative Information Centre (Israel)- and is endorsed by Independent Jewish Voices Canada; University of Toronto SJP (Canada); SJP of UCLA – and by Ronnie Kasrils, former South African government minister, anti-apartheid activist and writer.

To add your name to this list of signatories please email: Download a PDF of the letter.


August 12, 2013 (updated October 21, 2013)

Dear Colleagues:

We are a group of Palestinian, Israeli, and other oral historians and academics from Europe, South Africa, and North America calling on you to boycott the June 2014 ‘International Conference on Oral History’ organised by the Oral History Division of the Avraham Harman Institute of Contemporary Jewry, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. While all Israeli universities are deeply complicit in the occupation, settler-colonialism, and apartheid, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem is particularly noteworthy, as we explain below.

Your actions have a direct impact on our joint struggle for a just peace in Palestine-Israel and on our solidarity with fellow Palestinian academics whose universities have been closed down, blockaded and even bombed by Israeli aircraft in the last three decades; universities which have been subjected to a lengthy and brutal Israeli occupation in East Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza.

Specifically, the land on which some of its MountScopus campus buildings and facilities were expanded was acquired as a result of Israel’s 1968 illegal confiscation of 3345 dunums of Palestinian land. [1] This confiscated land in East Jerusalem is occupied territory according to international law. Israel’s unilateral annexation of occupied East Jerusalem into the State of Israel, and the application of Israeli domestic law to it, are violations of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and have been repeatedly denounced as null and void by the international community, including by the UN Security Council (Resolution 252, 21 May 1968). Moving Israeli staff and students to work and live on occupied Palestinian land places the Hebrew University in grave violation of the Fourth Geneva Conventions.

Further, the university is complicit in the unequal treatment of Palestinians, including those who are citizens of Israel. [2] For instance, it does not provide teaching services to the residents of Jerusalem and the surrounding areas in contrast to those provided to Jewish groups; no courses are offered in Arabic. [3] Additionally, the Hebrew University has chosen to remain silent when the entire population of Gaza has been excluded from the possibility to enrol and study in the university by the Israeli government. Palestinian students from Gaza have a better chance of getting into a university in the U.S than into Hebrew University.

The Hebrew University administration restricts the freedom of speech and protest of its few Palestinian students. For example, it had forbidden a commemoration event for the invasion of the Gaza Strip in 2008-2009 in which about 1,400 Palestinians were killed by the Israeli forces. [4] On the other hand, the Hebrew University offered special considerations and benefits to students who participated in that invasion as soldiers.

In December 2012 Israel’s Minister of Defence approved recognition of Ariel University in the illegal colony of Ariel as an Israeli university in the Israeli academic system. As a result, staff from the Hebrew University take part in the supervision and promotion committees of students and staff from the colonial university of Ariel; and the (Jewish only) staff takes part in the supervision and in promotion committees for Hebrew University students and staff. The Hebrew University recognizes academic degrees awarded by the Ariel University, which is built on confiscated Palestinian land and surrounded by Palestinian communities, but does not recognize degrees awarded by the nearby Al-Quds University. [5]

Ironically, the oral history conference is organised by an institute named after Avraham Harman, President of the Hebrew University from 1968 to 1983. As President of the Hebrew University he was directly responsible for the rebuilding and expansion of the original campus on Mount Scopus built on land illegally confiscated from Palestinians in East Jerusalem.

At a time when the international movement to boycott Israeli academic and cultural institutions is gaining ground in response to Israel’s flagrant and persistent infringement of Palestinian human and political rights, we urge scholars and professionals to reflect upon the implications of taking part in a conference at a complicit institution, and to refrain from such participation. The conference is an attempt to improve the image and reputation of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in the West and to cover up for the fact that the university is closely associated with Israeli annexation and ‘Separation/Apartheid Wall’ policies—policies that were strongly condemned on 9 July 2004 by the International Court of Justice in The Hague.[6]

Since the hegemonic world powers are actively complicit in enabling and perpetuating Israel’s colonial and oppressive policies, we believe that the only avenue open to achieving justice and upholding international law is sustained work on the part of Palestinian and international civil society to put pressure on Israel and its complicit institutions to end this oppression.

Inspired by the successful cultural boycott of apartheid South Africa, and supported by key Palestinian unions and cultural groups, in 2004, the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) issued a call for the academic and cultural boycott of institutions involved in Israel’s system of occupation, colonialism and apartheid. The Palestinian call appealed to the international academic community, among other things, to “refrain from participation in any form of academic and cultural cooperation, collaboration or joint projects with Israeli institutions” [7].

Following this, in 2005, an overwhelming majority in Palestinian civil society called for an all-encompassing BDS campaign based on the principles of human rights, justice, freedom and equality [8]. The BDS movement adopts a nonviolent, morally consistent strategy to hold Israel accountable to the same human rights and international law standards as other nations. It is asking the international academic community to heed the boycott call, as it did in the struggle against South African apartheid, until “Israel withdraws from all the lands occupied in 1967, including East Jerusalem; removes all its colonies in those lands; agrees to United Nations resolutions relevant to the restitution of Palestinian refugees rights; and dismantles its system of apartheid” [9].

Paralleling the Apartheid era boycott of complicit South African universities, we believe that participation in academic conferences or similar events in Israel – regardless of intentions- can only contribute to the prolongation of this injustice by normalizing and thereby legitimizing it. It inadvertently contributes to Israel’s efforts to appear as a normal participant in the world of scholarship while at the same time it practices the most pernicious form of colonial control and legalized racial discrimination against Palestinians.

Until Israel fully complies with international laws and conventions, we sincerely hope that international academics will not participate in endorsing their violations and the basic human rights of Palestinians – even if inadvertently. We call on our colleagues to treat Israel exactly the same way that most of the world treated racist South Africa – or indeed any other state that legislates and practices apartheid: as a pariah state. Only then can Palestinians hope for a just peace based on international law, respect for human rights, and, more crucially, on the fundamental principle of equality for all, irrespective of ethnicity, religion or other identity considerations.

We, therefore, urge you to boycott the Hebrew University of Jerusalem oral history conference and to call on your colleagues to refuse to participate in it; to refuse to cross the Palestinian picket line.

[Note: All footnotes are at the end of the document following a note on academic freedom.]


  1. Professor Ahmed Abbes, Directeur de Recherche au CNRS, Bures-sur-Yvette, France
  2. Professor  Saleh Abdel Jawad (Hamayel), BirzeitUniversity, Palestine
  3. Dr. Stéphanie Latte Abdallah, ; Researcher, French Institute for the Near East ( IFPO) Jerusalem, Palestine
  4. Dr. Adnan Abdelrazek – The Arab Studies Society – Jerusalem, Palestine
  5. Dr. Faiha Abdulhadi, Independent researcher, writer, poet, Palestine
  6. Professor Rabab Ibrahim Abdulhadi, Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas Initiative – College of Ethnic Studies, San Francisco State University, USA
  7. Hala Caroline Abou-Zaki, Phd Student, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS), Paris, France
  8. Line Abou Zaki, Clinical psychologist, Lebanon
  9. Professor Nadia Abu el Haj, Barnard/Columbia University, USA
  10. Professor Saed Abu-Hijleh, An-NajahNationalUniversityNablus, Palestine
  11. Professor Lila Abu-Lughod, Columbia University, New York, USA
  12. Dr. Salman Abu Sitta, Researcher, UK
  13. Professor Nadia Abu- ZahraUniversity of Ottawa, Canada
  14. Professor Ghada Ageel, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada
  15. Professor Mumtaz Ahmad, Vice President (Academic Affairs), International Islamic University, Islamabad, Pakistan
  16. Mazen Mustafa AlAbadlahAl-AqsaUniversity, Palestine
  17. Akkas Al-Ali, PhD candidate, University of Exeter, UK
  18. Dr. Anaheed Al-Hardan, ICI Berlin Institute for Cultural Inquiry, Germany
  19. Professor Bayan Nuwayhed al-Hout, LebaneseUniversity, Beirut, Lebanon
  20. Majeda Al-Saqqa, Culture and Free Thought Association, Khan Younis, Gaza, Palestine
  21. Professor (emeritus) Mateo Alaluf, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
  22. Professor Ammiel Alcalay, QueensCollege, City of New York, USA
  23. Dr. Diana Allan, Society for the Humanities, CornellUniversity, Ithaca, USA
  24. Professor Lori Allen, University of Cambridge, England
  25. Professor Nina Allen, SuffolkUniversity, Boston, USA
  26. Dr. Valentina Anastasi, Independent researcher, Catania, Italy
  27. Professor Marcos Ancelovici, Université du Québec à Montréal (UQÀM)
  28. Dr.  Miriyam Aouragh, CAMRI, University of Westminster, UK
  29. Professor (retired) William Ayers, University of Illinois-Chicago; Cyprus Oral History Project, USA
  30. Professor Alice Bach (retired) Archbishop Hallinan Professor of ReligiousStudies
    CaseWestern ReserveUniversity, ClevelandOH, USA
  31. Professor Angelo BaraccaUniversity of Florence, Italy
  32. Gustavo Barbosa, PhD candidate, London School of Economics, UK
  33. Professor Amjad Barham, HebronUniversity, President of the Palestinian Federation of Unions of University Professors and Employees, Palestine
  34. Ryvka Barnard, Doctoral student, New York University, USA
  35. Professor Javier BarredaUniversity of Alicante, Alicante, Spain
  36. Professor Isaías BarreñadaUniversidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), Spain
  37. Professor Munir BashourAmerican University of Beirut, Lebanon
  38. Professor Oren Ben-Dor, Southampton University, England
  39. Julie Benedetto, student, Institut d’Etudes Politiques, Lyon, France
  40. Specialist Israel Morales Benito, University of Alicante, Spain
  41. Bonita Bennett, Director, DistrictSixMuseum, Capetown, South Africa
  42. David Beorlegui, PhD candidate,  Basque Country University, Spain
  43. Professor Dan Berger, University of WashingtonBothell, USA
  44. Dr. Rima Berns-McGown, Independent Researcher/Adjunct Professor, University of Toronto, Canada
  45. Professor Doris Bittar,  CaliforniaStateUniversitySan Marcos, USA
  46. ProfessorDusanI. Bjelic, Department of Criminology, University of Southern Maine, USA
  47. Professor Maylei Blackwell, Departments of Chicana/o Studies, and Gender Studies, UCLA, USA
  48. Dr. Susan Blackwell, Independant language consultant, BirminghamUK
  49. Professor Hagit Borer, Queen Mary, University of London, England
  50. Professor (emerita) Joanna Bornat , Open University, UK
  51. Dr. Samia Botmeh, BirzeitUniversity, Palestine
  52. Professor Glenn Bowman, University of Kent, Canterbury, UK
  53. Dr. Robert Boyce, LondonSchool of Economics and Political Science, London University, UK
  54. Professor Haim Bresheeth, SOAS, University of London, England
  55. Dr. Khaldun Bshara, scholar, Riwaq Centre, Ramallah, Palestine
  56. Professor (emeritus) Jacques Bude, Université libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
  57. Professor Judith Butler, University of California, Berkeley, USA
  58. Professor Angeles Castaño MadroñalUniversidad de Sevilla, Spain
  59. Ines Castellano Picón, Phd Student, Universidad de Sevilla, Spain
  60. Professor Jesús M. Castillo, Universidad de Sevilla, Spain
  61. Professor John ChalcraftLondon School of Economics, UK 
  62. Professor Iain Chambers, Università degli Studi di Napoli, “L’Orientale,” Italy
  63. Professor  Michael Chanan, University of Roehampton, England
  64. Professor Elise Chenier, Simon Fraser University, British Columbia, Canada
  65. Professor Elliott Colla, Georgetown University, USA
  66. Dr Indira Chowdhury, IOHA Council member; Centre for Public History – Bangalore, India
  67. Nikoletta Christodoulou, FrederickUniversity, Nicosia; Cyprus Oral History Project, Cyprus
  68. Professor (retired) Raymonde Cloutier, University of Quebec (UQAM), Montreal,  Canada
  69. Dr. Jane Collings, University of California, Los Angeles, USA
  70. Dr Peter Collins, St Mary’s UniversityCollege, Belfast, Ireland
  71. Professor Miriam Cooke, Braxton Craven Professor of Arab Cultures, Duke University, USA
  72. Susan Currie, PhD student, Central Queensland University, Australia
  73. Mike Cushman, Independent researcher, London, England
  74. Professor Hamid Dabashi, Columbia University, New York, USA
  75. Professor Nabil Dajani,  American University of Beirut, Lebanon
  76. Professor Edwin Daniel (emeritusUniversity of AlbertaCanada
  77. Professor (emeritus) Eric David, Université libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
  78. Professor Lawrence Davidson, West Chester University, USA
  79. Dr. Rochelle Davis, Georgetown University, USA
  80. Dr. Uri Davis, AL-QUDSUniversity, Jerusalem, Palestine
  81. Professor (emerita) Sonia  Dayan-Herzbrun,  Université Paris, France
  82. Professor Herman De Ley, Ghent University, Belgium
  83. Prof Philippe Denis, Sinomlando Centre for Oral History and Memory Work in Africa, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
  84. Rafel Gustavo de Oliveira,  MSc student, Universidade Federal do Paraná, Brazil
  85. Professor Angeles Diez RodriguezUniversidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain
  86. Professor Anne-Marie Dillens, University Saint-Louis, Brussels, Belgium
  87. Professor John Docker, University of Sydney, Australia
  88. Professor Chris Dole, Amherst College, USA
  89. Professor Ann Douglas, Columbia University, New York, USA
  90. Professor Laurence DreyfusUniversity of Oxford, UK
  91. Professor Louise Edwards-SimpsonProject Director, Voices of Homelessness, St. Catherine University St Paul, Minnesota, USA
  92. Professor Haidar Eid, Al-AqsaUniversity, Gaza, Palestine
  93. Yasmine Eid-Sabbagh, PhD-candidate, Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, Austria.
  94. Oroub El-Abed, Senior Teaching Fellow SOAS, London University, UK
  95. Professor Nada Elia, Antioch University-Seattle, Washington, USA
  96. Professor Mary Fakher-Eldin, UniversityCollege, DublinIreland
  97. Professor Hoda Elsadda, Cairo University, Egypt
  98. Professor Samera Esmeir, University of California, Berkeley, USA
  99. Professor Ghazi-Walid Falah, University of Akron, Ohio, USA
  100. Professor Laila Farah, DePaul University, USA
  101. Professor Randa Farah, University of WesternOntario, Canada
  102. Professor (emeritus), Emmanuel Farjoun, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem,  Israel
  103. Dr. Adel Farrag, (retired) Institute of Technology Tallaght, Dublin, Ireland
  104. Professor (emeritus) Sasan Fayazmanesh, California State University, Fresno, US
  105. Dr. Sean Field, Director, Centre for Popular Memory and Senior Lecturer, Historical Studies Department, University of Cape Town, South Africa
  106. Arie Finkelstein, student, Université  Paris Est, France
  107. Professor Ellen Fleischmann, University of Dayton, Ohio, USA
  108. Senior Scholar Bill Fletcher, Jr., Institute for Policy Studies; former President, TransAfrica Forum, Washington, DC, USA
  109. Professor Manzar Foroohar, CaliforniaPolytechnicUniversity, San Luis Obispo, USA
  110. Professor (emeritus) Giorgio Forti, Università degli Studi di Milano, Italy
  111. Dr. Naomi Foyle, Coordinator of British Writers In Support of Palestine, UK
  112. Professor Cynthia Franklin, University of Hawaiʻi, USA
  113. Daniela Fuentealba Rubio, Investigator/archivist, Museum of Memory and Human Rights, Chile
  114. Professor Candace Fujikane, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, Honolulu, USA
  115. Professor Nell Gabiam Iowa State University, USA
  116. Professor (retired) Rosemary Galli, Observatorio das Nacionalidades, Brazil
  117. Professor Jose Maria Gago Gonzalez, Member, Seminario de Fuentes Orales, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain
  118. Professeur des Ecoles (en retraite) Marie Gérôme,  Ecole de Viuz,  Faverges, France
  119. Professor Julie GervaisUniversité Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, France
  120. Khalil Mohammad Gharra – student, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Occupied Palestine
  121. Ana Ghoreishian, PhD student, University of Arizona, USA
  122. Professor Rita Giacaman, BirzeitUniversity, Palestine
  123. Dr. Terri Ginsberg, ICMES, New York, USA
  124. Professor (emerita) Sherna Berger Gluck, CaliforniaStateUniversity, Long Beach, USA
  125. Professor Heather Goodall, University of TechnologySydney, Australia
  126. Professor (emeritus)  Yerach Gover, City University of New York, USA
  127. Professor Michel Gros,  CNRS (National Centre for Scientific Research,  Rennes, France
  128. Professor Regina Beatriz Guimarães Neto. Universidade Federal de Pernambuco; 2006-2008 President Brazilian Oral History Association, 2008-2010/Brazil
  129. Professor Yvonne Haddad, Georgetown University, USA
  130. Professor Ghassan Joseph Hage, University of Melbourne, Australia
  131. Professor (emerita) Elaine Hagopian, SimmonsCollege, Boston, USA
  132. Dr. Andrea Hajek, University of Glasgow, UK
  133. Professor (emerita) Sondra Hale, University of California, Los Angeles, USA
  134. Emad Hamdeh, PhD student, Exeter University, UK
  135. Lecturer Rola Hamed, UniversityCollege,  Cork, Ireland
  136. Professor Carrie Hamilton, University of Roehampton, UK
  137. Dr. Rema Hammami, BirzeitUniversity, Palestine
  138. Professor Sari Hanafi, American University of Beirut, Lebanon
  139. Karen S. Harper, community oral historian, Historical Society of Long Beach, California, USA
  140. Professor Michael Harris, Université  Paris-Diderot, France
  141. Dr. Jason Hart, Senior lecturer, University of BathUK
  142. Professor Salah D. Hassan, MichiganStateUniversity, Lansing, USA
  143. Professor Frances Hasso, DukeUniversity, Durham, North Carolina, USA
  144. Milton Hatoum writer, translator and professor, Brazil
  145. Professor Laia HaurieUniversitat Politècnica de Catalunya,Barcelona, Spain
  146. Karim Hauser AskalaniJournalistCasa Árabe Consortium, Madrid, Spain
  147. Dr Mahmoud Hawari, Khalili Research Centre, University of Oxford, UK
  148. Professor Desiree E. Hellegers, WashingtonStateUniversityVancouver, Washington, USA
  149. Professor Sami Hermez, University of Pittsburgh, USA
  150. Professor Elena Hernández SandoicaUniversidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain
  151. Shir Hever, Independent Economist/Researcher, Palestine-Israel
  152. Professor (emeritus) Nicholas Hopkins, American University-Cairo, Egypt
  153. Professor Nubar Hovsepian, ChapmanUniversity, Orange, California, USA
  154. Professor (emeritus ) Heinz Hurwitz, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
  155. Professor  Takeji Ino, Wayo Women’s University, Japan
  156. Perla Issa, PhD candidate, Exeter University, UK
  157. Kumiko Isumisawa, Chief Librarian, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan
  158. Professor Ferran Izquierdo Brichs, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain
  159. Dr Hana Jaber,  Histoire du Monde arabe contemporain, Collège de France, Paris, France
  160. Professor Richard Jackson, National Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Otago, NZ
  161. Hazem Jamjoum, PhD student, New York University, USA/Palestine
  162. Dr. Colleen Jankovic, US Film Scholar, Al-qaws organization, AlQuds/Jerusalem, Palestine
  163. Tineke E. Jansen, Independent researcher, former IOHA Council member, England
  164. Professor Maher JarrarAmerican University of Beirut, Lebanon
  165. Dr.Lena Jayyusi, Researcher, author, Palestine
  166. Chrischene Julius, Collections, Research and Documentation Dept District Six Museum, South Africa
  167. Professor Ray Jureidini, LebaneseAmericanUniversity, Beirut, Lebanon
  168. Professor Sharif Kanaana (retired), BirzeitUniversity, Palestine
  169. Professor Rhoda Kanaaneh, Columbia University, New York, USA
  170. Samar Kanafani, PhD Candidate, University of Manchester, UK
  171. Professor, J. Kehaulani Kauanui, WesleyanUniversity, Middletown, Connecticut, USA
  172. Dr. Fatma Kassem, Independent researcher, Israel
  173. Professor Robin D. Kelley, University of California, Los Angeles, USA
  174. Emma Jean Kelly, PhD CandidateAucklandUniversity of Technology, Aotearoa New Zealand
  175. Dr. Bryan Kelly, QueensUniversity, Belfast, N. Ireland
  176. Professor Emeritus Douglas Kerr, Case Western Reserve University, USA
  177. Professor Amy Kesselman (emerita), State University of New York at New Paltz, USA
  178. Dr. Abdulhadi Khalaf (retired) Center of Middle East Studies, Lund University, Sweden
  179. Professor Muhammad Ali Khalidi, York University, Canada
  180. Professor Tarif Khalidi, Center for Arab & ME Studies, AmericanUniversity, BeirutLebanon
  181. Professor Asem Khalil, BirzeitUniversity, Palestine
  182. Dr. Laleh Khalili, Reader in Politics, SOAS, University of London, England
  183. Dr. Agnes Khoo, Visiting Research Fellow, University of Leeds, UK
  184. Dr. Miyuki Kinjo, Post-doctoral researcher (Palestine/Israel), Ritsumeikan University, Japan
  185. Professor Gary Kinsman, Laurentian University, Sudbury, Canada
  186. Professor David Klein, CaliforniaStateUniversity, Northridge, USA
  187. Dr. Dennis Kortheuer, CaliforniaStateUniversity, Long Beach, USA
  188. Felipe Gustavo Koch Buttelli, PhD student, Faculdades EST, Brazil; Lecturer, Religions Science Faculty, University of São José, Santa Catarina, Brazil
  189. Professor Eileen Kuttab, BirzeitUniversity, Palestine
  190. Professor Hidemitsu Kuroki, TokyoUniversity of Foreign Studies, Japan
  191. Dr. C S Lakshmi,  SPARROW Sound & Picture Archives for Research on Women, Mumbai India
  192. Dr David Landy, TrinityCollegeDublin, Ireland
  193. Professor Nadia Latif, GeorgiaStateUniversity, Atlanta, USA
  194. Professor Bonita Lawrence (Mi’kmaw), Indigenous Studies, York University, Canada
  195. Zoe Lawlor, University of Limerick Language Centre, Ireland
  196. Dr. Clint LeBruyns, Theology and Development Program, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
  197. Professor Ronit Lentin, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland
  198. Dr. Les Levidow, Open University, UK
  199. Professor Miren Llona, Universidad del País Vasco/Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea; former Council member, IOHA, Spain
  200. Professor David Colles Lloyd, University of California, Riverside
  201. Dr. Elisabeth Longuenesse, National Centre for Scientific Research(CNRS), Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin en Yvelines, France
  202. Professor Maria Losé LeraSeville University, Spain
  203. Arab Lotfi, film maker, university lecturer, journalist, writer, Lebanon
  204. Professor (emeritus) Moshé Machover, KingsCollege, University of London, England
  205. Dr. Alex Lubin, Director, Center for American Studies and Research, AmericanUniversity of Beirut; University of New Mexico (on leave) – USA/Lebanon
  206. Dr. Kenneth Macnab (retired), University of Sydney, Australia
  207. John Marquez, PhD Student,  University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, USA
  208. Hala Marshood, Student, Humanities Faculty, HebrewUniversity of Jerusalem, Occupied Palestine
  209. Dr. Michael MartenLecturer in Postcolonial Studies and Religion, University of Stirling, Scotland
  210. Professor Rocio Medina MartinUniversidad Pablo de Olavide Sevilla, España
  211. Professor Nur Masalha, SOAS, University of London, England
  212. Dr. Norma Masriyyeh, BethlehemUniversity, Palestine
  213. Professor Joseph Massad, Columbia University, New York, USA
  214. Professor Dina Mattar, SOAS, University of London, England
  215. Dr. Rachel Mattson, public historian, archivist, educator, New York, USA
  216. Des McGuinness, School of Communications, Dublin City University, Ireland
  217. Dr. Bill McSweeney, TrinityCollege, Dublin, Ireland
  218. Dr. Daniel Meier, University of Oxford, UK
  219. Dr. Willem Meijs, independent language consultant, Birmingham, UK
  220. Professor Anne Meneley, TrentUniversity, Canada
  221. Meena R. Menon, author and oral historian, Delhi, India
  222. Professor Laurie K. MercierWashingtonStateUniversityVancouver, USA
  223. Professor William Messing, University of Minnesota, USA
  224. Jennifer Mogannam, Ph. D. candidate, University of California, San Diego
  225. Professor  Chandra Talpade Mohanty, Syracuse University, New York, USA
  226. Professor Shahrzad Mojab, University of Toronto, Canada
  227. Professor Antonio Montenegro, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Brazil
  228. Professor Annalies Moors, Amsterdam Institute of Social Science Research, University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands
  229. Professor Amir Mufti, University of California, Los Angeles, USA
  230. Professor Ahlam Muhtaseb, CaliforniaStateUniversity, San Bernardino, USA
  231. Professor Suroopa Mukherjee,  University of Delhi,  India-
  232. Dr. Corinna Mullin, University of Tunis, Tunisia
  233. Professor (emerita) Martha Mundy, London School of Economics, UK
  234. Dr. M.J. Muskens, University of Nijmegen, the Netherlands
  235. Professor Cynthia MynttiAmerican University of Beirut, Lebanon
  236. Dr. Karma Nabulsi, University of Oxford, UK
  237. Professor Premilla Nadasen, QueensCollege, City of New York, USA
  238. Professor Eiji Nagasawa, Vice Director, Institute for Advanced Study on Asia, The University of Tokyo, Japan
  239. Dr. Khalil Nakhleh, researcher and writer, Palestine
  240. Dr. Dorothy Naor, Independent researcher, Israel
  241. Dr. Marcy Newman, Independent Scholar, India
  242. Dr. Sonia Nimr, BirzeitUniversity, Palestine
  243. Professor Isis Nusair, Denison University, Ohio, USA
  244. Dr Barra O’Donnabhain, UniversityCollegeCork, Ireland
  245. Dr. Féilim Ó’Hadhmaill,  UniversityCollegeCork, Ireland
  246. Professor Mari Oka, Kyoto University, Japan
  247. Professor Gary Y. Okihiro, Columbia University, New York, USA
  248. Hussein Omar, PhD student, University of Oxford, UK
  249. Imranali Panjwani, PhD student, KingsCollege, University of London, UK
  250. Professor Ilan Pappe, Exeter University, England
  251. Professor Paul Parker, Baltzer Distinguished Professor of Religion,  Elmhurst College, USA
  252. Dr Nigel Parsons, School of People, Environment & Planning, MasseyUniversity, NZ
  253. Professor Willie Van Peer, LudwigMaximilianUniversity, Munich, Germany
  254. Dr. Ana Pego, Business and Economic Studies Department, Open University, Lisbon, Portugal
  255. Professor Sylvain Perdigon, American University of Beirut, Lebanon
  256. Professor Julie Peteet, University of Louisville, Kentucky, USA
  257. Dr. Elizabeth Picard, Directeur de Recherche (emerita), National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS), France
  258. Professor Gabriel Piterberg, University of California, Los Angeles, USA
  259. Dr. Nicola Pratt, University of Warwick, UK
  260. 260.    Dr. Nicolas Puig, Researcher, L’Institut de recherche pour le développement (IRD) France
  261. Dr. Neshat Quaiser, Jamia Millia Islamia, CentralUniversity, New Delhi, India
  262. 262.    Professor Mazin Qumsiyeh, Bethlehem and Birzeit Universities, Palestine
  263. Dua’a Qurie, Executive Director, The Palestinian NGO Network, Ramallah, Palestine
  264. Jorge Ramos Tolosa, researcher and professor, Universitat de València, Spain
  265. Professor >Marwan Rashed, Université de Paris-IV Sorbonne, Paris
  266. Professor Stuart Rees, University of Sydney, NSW, Australia
  267. Dr. Sophie Richter-Devroe, Exeter University, UK
  268. Professor (emerita) Rosalie Riegle,  Saginaw Valley State University, Michigan, USA
  269. Professor Martina RiekerAmerican University of Cairo, Egypt
  270. Dr. Rebecca Roberts, Independent scholar, UK
  271. Professor Lisa Rofel, University of CaliforniaSanta Cruz, USA
  272. Professor Ben Rogaly, University of Sussex, UK
  273. Professor Vincent Romani, Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM), Canada
  274. Professor (emerita) Hilary Rose, University of Bradford & Gresham College, London, UK
  275. Professor (emeritus) Steven Rose, Open University & Gresham College, London, UK
  276. Professor Jonathan Rosenhead, London School of Economics, University of London, UK
  277. Dr. Alice Rothchild, MD, Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School, USA
  278. Dr. Bashir Saade, American University of Beirut, Lebanon
  279. Professor Hanan Sabea, American University-Cairo, Egypt
  280. Professor Fatima Sadiqi, Senior Professor of Linguistics and Gender Studies; Co-founder, International Institute for Languages and Cultures (INLAC), Fez, Morocco
  281. Ann Sado, Independent lecturer, former Board member, Japan Oral History Association, Tokyo
  282. Professor (emeritus) Sadao Sakai, RyukokuUniversity, Kyoto, Japan-
  283. Professor Masaki Sakiyama, RitsumeikanUniversity,Kyoto, Japan
  284. Professor Ruba Salih, SOAS, University of London, UK
  285. Professor Nisreen Salti, American University of Beirut, Lebanon
  286. Dr. Adel Samara, author, editor Kanaan Review, Occupied Palestine
  287. Mandy SangerEducation Manager, DistrictSixMuseum, Cape Town, South Africa
  288. Dr. Leena Saraste, AaltoUniversity, Helsinki, Finland
  289. Professor Cecilia Sardenberg, Universidade Federal da Bahia, Brazil
  290. Professor Surajit Sarkar – AmbedkarUniversity, Delhi. India
  291. Dr. Rosemary Sayigh, Center for Arab and ME Studies,AmericanUniversity of Beirut, Lebanon
  292. Professor (emeritus) Robert M. Schaible, University of Southern Maine, USA
  293. Professor (emeritus) Pierre Schapira, University Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris, France
  294. Dr. Leonardo Schiocchet, Guest Researcher, Institute for Social Anthropology at the Austrian Academy of Sciences,  Post-doctoral grantee CAPES, Brazil
  295. Professor Sarah Schulman, ACT UP Oral History Project, New York, USA
  296. Professor Richard Seaford, University of Exeter, UK
  297. Professor (Emerita) Evalyn F. Segal, PhD, San Diego State University, USA
  298. Professor May Seikaly, WayneStateUniversity, Detroit, USA
  299. Professor Sherene Seikaly, AmericanUniversity in Cairo, Egypt
  300. Professor Jihane Sfeir, Universite Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
  301. Dr. Anthony F. Visiting Scholar McGill University, Montreal, Canada
  302. Professor Anton Shammas, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA
  303. Dorothy Sheridan, Honorary Professor of History (retired), University of Sussex , UK.
  304. Dr. Magid Shihade, BirzeitUniversity, Palestine
  305. Professor (emeritus) Kazuko Shiojiri, University of Tsukuba;  Tokyo International University; Director, Institute of International Exchange (IIET), Japan
  306. Professor Andor Skotnes, Chair, Dept. of History and Society, The SageColleges, Troy, NY, USA
  307. Professor Souad Slim, University of Balamand,Lebanon
  308. Richard Saumarez Smith, Professor, American University of Beirut, Lebanon
  309. Dr. Graham SmithOral History Department of History, Royal Holloway, University of London
  310. Dr. Kobi Snitz, Weizmann Institute, Israel
  311. Professor Dean Spade, Seattle University School of Law, Washington, USA
  312. Dr. Jane Starfield, University of Johannesburg, South Africa
  313. Professor Ted Steinberg, Case Western Reserve University, USA
  314. Suzy Subways, SLAM! Herstory Project,New York,NY
  315. Professor Akiko Sugase, NationalMuseum of Ethnology, Japan
  316. Dr. Ziad Suidan, Independent scholar, USA
  317. Dr Mayssun Sukarieh , Fellow, CogutCenter for the Humanities, BrownUniversity. USA.
  318. Sady Sullivan, Independent Oral HistorianBrooklyn,New York,USA
  319. Dr. Hitoshi Suzuki, AreaStudyCenter, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan
  320. Professor Paul Tabar, Director, Institute for Migration Studies, Lebanese American Univ., Lebanon
  321. Professor Neferti Tadiar, Barnard College, New York, USA
  322. Rabah Tahraoui ,Professeur ,Université de Rouen, France
  323. Professor Carlo TaiboAutonomous University of Madrid, Spain
  324. Professor Ghada Talhami, Lake Forest College, Illinois, USA
  325. Professor Lisa Taraki, BirzeitUniversity, Palestine
  326. Sibel Taylor, PhD candidate, OxfordBrookesUniversity, Oxford, England
  327. Professor Sunera Thobani, University of British Columbia, Canada
  328. Professor (retired) Chizuko Tominaga of Miyagi Gakuin Women’s University, Japan
  329. Professor Barry Trachtenberg, University of Albany, New York, USA
  330. Professor Judith Tucker, Georgetown University, USA
  331. Professor Linda Tuhiwai Smith, Pro Vice Chancellor Māori, Dean of Te Pua Wānanga ki te Ao The School of Māori and Pacific Development, The University of Waikato, New Zealand
  332. Professor Masaki Uno, Hiroshima City University, Japan
  333. Professor Sharon Utakis, BronxCommunity College, City University of New York, USA
  334. Professor C. Utathya, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, USA
  335. Professor Salim Vally, University of Johannesburg, South Africa
  336. Dr. Toine Van Teeffelen, Arab Educational Institute, Bethlehem, Palestine
  337. Professor Agustin VellosoUniversidad Nacional de Educacion a Distancia (UNED) Madrid, Spain
  338. Professor Kamala Visweswaran, University of Texas, USA
  339. Naomi Wallace, Independent scholar, award-winning playwright, UK/USA
  340. Professor Devra Weber, University of California, Riverside, USA
  341. Professor Mark R. Westmoreland, AmericanUniversityCairo, Egypt
  342. Professor Johnny Eric WilliamsTrinity College,Ireland
  343. Professor Ulrike Woehr, HiroshimaCityUniversity, Hiroshima, Japan
  344. Dr. Patrick Wolfe, Trobe University, Australia
  345. Adel YahyaDirector, Palestinian Association for Cultural Exchange (PACE), Ramallah, Palestine
  346. Yoshihiro Yakushige, PhD student, Kyoto University, Japan
  347. Dr. Hala Yameni, BethlehemUniversity, Bethlehem, Palestine
  348. Professor Nadia Yaqub,University ofNorth Carolina,Chapel Hill,USA
  349. Professor Masae Yuasa, HIroshimaCityUniversity, Hiroshima, Japan
  350. Professor (emeritus)Takehi Yukawa, Keio University,  Japan
  351. Omar Zahzah, PhD student, University of California, Los Angeles, USA
  352. Professor (emeritus) Elia Zureik, Queen’s University, Canada


Endorsed by the following Academic and Cultural Boycott Campaigns: Academics for Palestine (Ireland); AURDIP (France); BAB (Germany); BOYCOTT! (Israel); BRICUP (UK); InCACBI (India); PACBI (Palestine); PBAI (Spain); USACBI (USA) – and by the Alternative Information Centre (Israel); Groundwell: Oral Historians for Social Change, core working group; Independent Jewish Voices Canada; University of Toronto SJP (Canada); SJP of UCLA  – and by Ronnie Kasrils, former South African government minister, anti-apartheid activist and writer.


To add your name to this list of signatories please


The UN Committee on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights defines academic freedom to include:

the liberty of individuals to express freely opinions about the institution or system in which they work, to fulfill their functions without discrimination or fear of repression by the state or any other actor, to participate in professional or representative academic bodies, and to enjoy all the internationally recognized human rights applicable to other individuals in the same jurisdiction. The enjoyment of academic freedom carries with it obligations, such as the duty to respect the academic freedom of others, to ensure the fair discussion of contrary views, and to treat all without discrimination on any of the prohibited grounds. [10], emphasis added]

Keeping this definition in mind, we are keenly aware of the importance of the academic freedom of the individual, but also believe that such freedoms should not extend automatically to institutions. Judith Butler reminds us that: “our struggles for academic freedom must work in concert with the opposition to state violence, ideological surveillance, and the systematic devastation of everyday life.” [11]

It is incumbent on academics to develop such a nuanced understanding of academic freedom if we are to call for social justice and work alongside the oppressed in advancing their freedom, equality and self-determination.

The Israeli academy is not the bastion of dissent and liberalism it is purported to be by those who defend Israel and attempt to delegitimize the call for academic boycott.  The vast majority of the Israeli academic community is oblivious to the oppression of the Palestinian people–both inside Israel and in the occupied territory–and has never opposed the practices and policies of their state. In fact, they duly serve in the reserve forces of the occupation army and, accordingly are likely to be either perpetrators of or silent witnesses to the daily brutality of the occupation.  They also do not hesitate to partner in their academic research with the security-military establishment that is the chief architect and executor of the occupation.  A petition drafted by four Israeli academics merely calling on the Israeli government “to allow [Palestinian] students and lecturers free access to all the campuses in the [occupied] Territories, and to allow lecturers and students who hold foreign passports to teach and study without being threatened with withdrawal of residence visas,” was endorsed by only 407 out of 9,000 Israeli academics – less than 5% of those who were invited to sign it. [12]


[1] The decision was published in the official Israeli Gazette (the Hebrew edition), number 1425. It was therefore “legalized” by Israel. This land, for the most part, was (still is) privately owned by Palestinians living in that area. A large part of the confiscated land was then given to the HebrewUniversity to expand its campus (mainly its dormitories). The Palestinian landowners refused to leave their lands and homes arguing that the confiscation order of 1968 was illegal. When the case was taken to the Jerusalem District Court in 1972 (file no. 1531/72), the court ruled in favor of the University and the state, deciding that the Palestinian families must evacuate their homes and be offered alternative housing. See also

[2] Keller, U. (2009) the Academic Boycott of Israel and the Complicity of Israeli Academic Institutions in Occupation of

PalestinianTerritories. The Economy of the Occupation: A Socioeconomic Bulletin: Alternative Information Centre.








[10] UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, “The Right to Education (Art.13),” December 8, 1999

[11] Judith Butler. “Israel/Palestine and the Paradoxes of Academic Freedom.” in: Radical Philosophy, Vol. 135. pp. 8-17, January/February 2006. (Accessed on December 10, 2011)