11 December 2007

11 December 2007 - A big day for free speech at Harvard

Later today, the Harvard faculty will meet and possibly re-consider Professor J. Lorand Matory's bad-faith motion on "civil dialogue."

Tonight, Philippe Karsenty will present his lecture, "The Al-Dura Hoax Is Over Tonight," on campus.

We shall see who are the real friends and foes of free speech at Harvard.

UPDATE: The agenda for the Faculty of Arts and Sciences meeting includes Matory's motion as the very first item on the docket. Yet last week Matory claimed he was unaware whether his motion was going to be discussed at the December meeting. It is hard to believe he was telling the truth.

The motion is being presented as follows, with a substitute motion by Dean Shinagel:

1. Continued discussion of docket item 2 from the Regular Meeting of November 13, 2007

Professor J. L. Matory moved:

That this Faculty commits itself to fostering civil dialogue in which people with a broad range of perspectives feel safe and are encouraged to express their reasoned and evidence-based ideas.

Explanatory Note:

The context for this motion is outlined in an opinion piece by Professor Matory, “Israel and Censorship at Harvard,” which was published in the Harvard Crimson on September 14, 2007.

Dean M. Shinagel will move to substitute the following:

That the Faculty reaffirm the guidelines set down in its 1990 legislation concerning freedom of speech.

Recordings of Matory's address last week have been posted on the Solomonia blog.


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