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From: Rosenfeld, Alvin H. Sent: Sunday, June 12, 2011 11:43 AM To: 'firstname.lastname@example.org'; 'email@example.com'; 'firstname.lastname@example.org'; 'email@example.com' Subject: Yale's decision to close YIISA June 12, 2011 President Richard C. Levin President's Office Yale University PO BOX 208229 New Haven, CT 06520-8229 Professor Peter Salovey Provost's Office Yale University Warner House, Room 107 1 Hillhouse Avenue New Haven, CT 06511 Dear President Levin, Dear Provost Salovey: As scholars who recently participated in a major conference on antisemitism at Indiana University, we were astonished to learn of Yale's decision to eliminate the Yale Initiative for the Interdisciplinary Study of Antisemitism (YIISA). Among North American universities, YIISA has been a pioneer in advancing research on contemporary manifestations of antisemitism. It has done much good work. The list of speakers it has hosted is diverse and includes many of the leading scholars in the field. Its publication program, while still young, already boasts several notable titles. The potential for YIISA to build on these attainments and achieve still more in the future is undeniable. What, then, explains Yale's decision to suddenly terminate an institute with such a record? While we are unfamiliar with the grounds for your decision, the immediate closure of YIISA strikes us as peremptory and unwise. Surely a way can be found to help YIISA continue its impressive record of accomplishments and, at the same time, help it remedy whatever problems your review may have identified. At a time when antisemitism is once again a social reality of increasing concern, universities would do well to encourage the scholarly work of institutes like YIISA rather than shut them down. We urge you to reconsider your decision and thereby enable Yale University to remain a leader in studying one of the critical problems of contemporary culture. To do otherwise will deprive the scholarly community of an intellectual resource of high energy and proven effectiveness. Especially at this time of resurgent antisemitism, Yale's surprising move to close YIISA sends precisely the wrong message. Respectfully, Alvin H. Rosenfeld Professor of English and Jewish Studies Irving M. Glazer Chair in Jewish Studies Director, Institute for the Study of Contemporary Antisemitism Indiana University Bloomington, IN 47405 OTHER SIGNATORIES Dina R. Spechler Associate Professor of Political Science Indiana University Bloomington, IN 47405 R. Amy Elman Professor Chair, Political Science Kalamazoo College Kalamazoo, MI 49006 US Kemal Silay Professor of Central Eurasian Studies; Ottoman and Modern Turkish Studies Chair; Director, Turkish Studies Program; Indiana University Bloomington, IN 47405 Matthias Küntzel Political Scientist and author Hamburg, Germany Research Associate of the Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of Antisemitism at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Sidney Rosenfeld Professor Emeritus of German Language & Literature Oberlin College Oberlin, OH Rifat Bali Publisher, Libra Books Istanbul, Turkey Research Fellow at Alberto Benveniste Center for Sephardic Studies and Culture (Paris) Jamsheed K. Choksy Professor of Iranian Studies, Central Eurasian Studies, History, India Studies, International Studies, Islamic Studies Indiana University Bloomington, IN 47405 Member, United States National Council on the Humanities National Endowment for the Humanities Kenneth L. Marcus Executive Vice President and Director The Anti-Semitism Initiative Institute for Jewish & Community Research 3198 Fulton St., San Francisco, CA 94118 Paul Bogdanor Independent scholar and author London England Bernard Harrison Emeritus E.E. Ericksen Professor of Philosophy, University of Utah Emeritus Professor in the Faculty of Humanities, University of Sussex Bruno Chaouat Director, Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies , Associate Professor of French, University of Minnesota Minneapolis, MN William I.Brustein, Professor of Sociology, Political Science, and History The Ohio State University Columbus, Ohio Catherine Chatterley Founding Director Canadian Institute for the Study of Antisemitism (CISA) SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of History University of Manitoba, Canada Stephen Katz Professor, Borns Jewish Studies Program and the Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures Indiana University Bloomington, IN 47405 Emanuele Ottolenghi Senior Fellow - Foundation for Defense of Democracies Washington, D.C. Author Dina Porat Head, the Kantor Center for the Study of Contemporary European Jewry Former Head, the Stephen Roth Institute for the Study of Contemporary Antisemitism and Racism The Alfred P. Slaner Chair in Anti-Semitism and Racism incumbent Tel-Aviv University, POB 39040, Ramat-Aviv Tel-Aviv 69978, Israel Ilan Avisar Associate Professor Film & TV Dept. Tel Aviv University Jean Axelrad Cahan Senior Lecturer in Philosophy Director Norman and Bernice Harris Center for Judaic Studies University of Nebraska-Lincoln Elhanan Yakira Professor, Department of Philosophy The Hebrew University of Jerusalem Jerusalem, Israel Balazs Berkovits Independent scholar and author Budapest, Hungary Zvi Gitelman Professor, Political Science University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan Andrew Sloin Assistant Professor of History Earlham College Richmond, Indiana Alejandro Baer Assistant Professor of Sociology Universität Bayreuth Germany Tammi Rossman-Benjamin Lecturer in Hebrew and Jewish Studies University of California Santa Cruz Santa Cruz, CA Anna Sommer Schneider Research Assistant Institute for the Study of Modern Israel Emory University, Atlanta Eirik Eiglad Ph.D. candidate and author History and Philosophy University of Oslo Oslo, Norway Matthias Lehmann Associate Professor of History and Jewish Studies Indiana University Bloomington, IN 47405 Paul Berman Independent scholar New York City Author of Flight of the Intellectuals and other books Gunther Jikeli International Institute Education and Research on Antisemitism, London, UK Dr. Szilvia Peremiczky Director, Hungarian Jewish Museum, Budapest Senior Lecturer, National Rabbinical Seminary and Jewish Studies University, Budapest Senior Lecturer, Eötvös Lóránd University of Arts and Sciences, Budapest -- Yocheved Menashe List Editor, H-Antisemitism List Editor, H-Holocaust