The following statement was issued by Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame, in response to the American Studies Association boycott of Israel’s higher education institutions.
“The American Studies Association’s recent vote to boycott Israeli academic institutions is an infringement on academic freedom, and I join with other university presidents in condemning it. From a hill overlooking Bethlehem to the south and Jerusalem to the north, the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Ecumenical Studies has been for decades a place where scholars and students of all faiths the world over have gathered to better understand religious traditions, including relationships among Christians, Jews and Muslims. However intractable the conflict among Israelis and Palestinians may appear, dialogue — not boycott — is more likely to produce understanding. Institutions of higher education, in particular, as well as those associated with them, should champion the free exchange of ideas, and not seek to impede it.”