Sunday, July 20, 2008

Don't renew!

At the blog of the Association of Literary Scholars and Critics, The Valve ("a literary organ"), Mark Bousquet defends the American Association of University Professors from the accusation that they've been feckless defenders of Ward Churchill, after Bousquet posted an AP piece on association prez Cary Nelson and his efforts to revive the shrunken organization (blogged about here):
Over at Brainstorm, a furor erupted based on one reader’s remark, “The AAUP’s defense of Churchill also prevents me from renewing my membership. What a waste of resources!”
With exaggerated patience Bousquet explains that the AAUP never investigated or took a stand on the Churchill case, but simply urged due process. This is true. On the other hand, previous AAUP head Roger Bowen once claimed Ward had never advocated violence, and particularly recommended his infamous Socialism and Democracy piece, "An American Holocaust?" in which Churchill asserts that historians of the Holocaust like Deborah Lipstadt, with their "Jewish exclusivism," are actually "holocaust deniers"; Nelson himself used the "maybe it was just a little bit of plagiarism" gambit in discussing the case; and the CU chapter (as well as others) of the AAUP was totally in the tank for Churchill.

So maybe a little confusion is understandable.

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