Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Antisemitism among British Academics

Eve Garrard, writing on Normblog, says it's time for union members to recognize their passivity equals complicity with the antisemitism of their union's leadership. The trigger of her piece is the attempt by the UCU to redefine antisemitism so that their actions aren't it; by the current definitions, they certainly are.


ModernityBlog said...

Strictly speaking, it is not all academics.

Just the UCU leadership.

Most seasoned observers of UCU would acknowledge that should this proposal be put to the general membership, then it would fail.

So what you have here is a small group of politically motivated individuals exerting undue control over a trade union, and the key is to remember is that they don't ever want these issues decided by the overall membership.

They prefer meetings and situations which they can control, their actions are the antithesis of basic union democracy.

Sérgio said...

In sum, it´s a mini-Politburo.

So, what other decent academics should do is to state clear and loud that make that this UCU sewage is no more their representative.

Silke said...

that's the trouble with institutions, once they have been built. There is so much time and effort invested that for a long time one tries to save them, knowing that without an institution, as a mere individual, one's chances of getting anything done are greatly diminished.

So the conundrum is: as an individual you can uphold your high ethics a lot easier than as a club-member.

To decide when the club has become unredeemable is the tricky part.

Sérgio said...


This club has become an antisemitic mafia, period. There´s nothing else decent academics can do but either to throw away these people by voting (a boring stuff full of little power games and wars they are expert at waging) or just leave en masse, which can be done using the famous "social media". They could do that by posting a major op-ed somewhere.

Otherwise, they are indeed conniving with that sewage.

Silke said...

I think these guys have tried something like that when that academic boycotting first started. I haven't followed them. At the beginning at least they were for academics only. That was when I still thought, maybe I should overcome it and belong somewhere.

But from what I come across I would bet that their impact hasn't reached the level it should have.

In Germany as best I know Matthias Küntzel is a member who has a bit of an international name. No other "celebs" I am aware of.

Silke said...

oops here's the link

Anonymous said...

The UCU membership could not care less about Israel or "Palestine". Also the UCU has never actually passed a resolution that calls for a boycott despite all the tricks they have used - holding vote on erev peseach, holding a vote in a union soon to disappear - the whole point is to get headlines and a reaction which then gives the completely false impression Israel is being "isolated".