Winnipeg Jewish Review  
Site Search:
Home  |  Archives  |  Contact Us
 
Features Local Israel Next Generation Arts/Op-Eds Editorial/Letters Links Obituary/In Memoriam

Deborah Lipstadt

 
DEBORAH LIPSTADT: HOW TO STUDY ANTISEMITISM

Deborah Lipstadt, posted Jan 2, 2011

When the news of Yale University’s decision to close its Initiative for the Interdisciplinary Study of Antisemitism (YIISA) was first made public in early June, the sector of the blogosphere that addresses Jewish issues began to buzz.

Discussion, charges and accusations flew. Yale’s critics praised YIISA as a beacon of academic scholarship that had made a significant contribution to this field of study. They charged Yale with caving in to pressure from Arabs and Muslims, both on and off campus, who could not abide the way in which YIISA boldly shone a spotlight on Muslim anti-Semitism. To these people, it appeared as if anti-Semitism itself had brought down an educational institution devoted to the study of this terrible malaise. I registered my initial response on Twitter, describing the shutting down of YIISA as a strange, if not weird, decision and wondering what had happened.

Yale’s response to the wave of criticism constituted a classic reminder that even a place populated by exceptionally smart people can shoot itself in the foot with deadly accuracy. The university defended itself against charges of having succumbed to Muslim pressure by listing the Jewish studies courses taught at the school and stressing its extensive library holdings in the field. (Yale, admittedly, does have an excellent Jewish studies program, and its libraries have one of the best collections in Jewish studies worldwide.) Yale’s clumsy response constituted, as one blogger put it, the academic equivalent of, “Some of our best friends are Jews.”


There is, however, another side to this story. Apparently, there were people on the Yale campus who were associated with YIISA and who were eager to have it succeed. These friends of YIISA counseled the institute’s leadership that some of its efforts had migrated to the world of advocacy from that of scholarship. They warned YIISA that it was providing fodder to the critics’ claim that it was not a truly academic endeavor.

To continue reading click here:  http://can-isa.com/1/post/2011/12/deborah-lipstadt-on-how-to-study-antisemitism.html 

 
<<Previous Article       Next Article >>
Subscribe to the Winnipeg Jewish Review
  • James Bezan
  • Saper Agencies
  • Joyce Rykiss
  • Jim Muir
  • Sveinson Construction
  • The Home Store
  • Eddie's Gravel Supply Ltd.
  • Stringer Rentals & Power Products
  • John Bucklascuk
  • Tyler Bucklaschuk
  • Tradesman Mechanical
  • Munroe Pharmacy
  • Hugh's Electrical
  • Ali Raizman
  • Winnipeg Drapery
  • Accurate Lawn & Garden
  • Dr. Gary Levine
  • Wallace + Wallace
  • Fetching Style
  • Interlake Service
  • Gimli Snowmobile Centre
  • Lakeside Roofing
  • KC Enterprises
  • Bulrushes Gallery
  • Chicken Chef
  • Ron Zimmerman
  • Tuxedo Village Family Restaurant
  • Maric Homes
  • Nikos
  • Santa Lucia Pizza
  • John Wishnowski
  • Gulay Plumbing
  • Ingrid Bennett
  • JLS Construction
  • Whytewold Emporium
  • Winnipeg Prophecy Conference
  • Keepin' It Clean
  • Sarel Canada
  • Center for Near East Policy Research
  • Bare Body Sugaring
  • Roofco Winnipeg Roofing
  • Center for Near East Policy Research
  • Nachum Bedein
Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.


Opinions expressed in letters to the editor or articles by contributing writers are not necessarily endorsed by Winnipeg Jewish Review.