Lila Abu-Lughod: Should We Act on Israel/Palestine, or Not?

Anthropologists for the Boycott of Israeli Academic Institutions

[this essay originally appeared in Anthropology News]

abu-lughodI hope people will read the Task Force Report on Israel/Palestine. It represents hundreds of hours of labor by our colleagues. It reflects what is special about our discipline and why most of us are proud to be anthropologists. Based on close listening, careful observation, wide reading, and a search to find the right analytical framework, it fairly presents the situation about which we all now must make a decision. The comparative perspective these anthropologists brought to the task and their acknowledgment of both anthropology’s historic complicity and courage with regard to past and present colonial and neocolonial injustices, shape the report. Those who want to know more should consult the ethnographic work of so many colleagues who have done fieldwork in Palestinian communities (e.g. Lori Allen 2013; Amahl Bishara 2012; Ilana Feldman2008; Rhoda Kanaaneh 2008;

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