No limits at Yale

Jerusalem Post      June 24, 2011

Photo by Reuters

Sir, – As director of the newly created Yale Program for the Study of Antisemitism (YPSA), I am writing to correct the mischaracterization of the program’s aims in “After controversial closure of Yale center, new program launched on anti-Semitism” (JP June 22).

As I made clear in a statement disseminated to the media and the scholarly community, “YPSA will discuss both contemporary anti-Semitism and historical anti-Semitism. Like many, I am concerned by the recent upsurge in violence against Jews around the world and YPSA will address these concerns. I also believe that we benefit a great deal by placing current events into historical context. YPSA will not refrain from exploring any controversial contemporary topic. As a member of the Yale faculty and the director of the new program, I will do my best to ensure that all academic work associated with YPSA reflects Yale’s tradition of the highest scholarly excellence.”

The Yale administration has provided extraordinary support for the new program and has not tried to limit the range of issues it will address in any way. I hope we can lay the false rumors to rest once and for all so that YPSA can undertake the important work of contributing to our understanding of anti-Semitism.

MAURICE SAMUELS

New Haven

The writer is director of the Yale Program for the Study of Antisemitism

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