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Who in the World Is Jasbir Puar?

Jasbir Puar.jpgI don’t know if she is a reputable academic, but firebrand works fine as a descriptor for Rutger’s Professor Jasbir Puar, who will be at the College today to participate in a panel discussion scheduled to take place in Kreindler Conference Hall from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. In addition, a fair case can be made that Professor Puar is an anti-Semite, if the accounts of her speech earlier in the year at Vassar are accurate.

Parker Richards ‘18 has written a fine summary in The D (no, I am not going soft on the paper; there have been some good pieces in it recently) regarding today’s panel and the reaction of various people and groups on campus to Puar’s visit. Let me add a link to an article by Puar:

Jasbir Puar Borderlands Comp.jpg

When you filter out the deconstructionist noise, does Puar’s charge seem accurate given what you know about Israeli policy and behavior?

Addendum: See a list of Puar’s publications.

Addendum: An alumnus writes in:

This Puar thing could be a mess of the highest order. The GRID programs funding should be called into question. Not only pseudo intellectualism but now mean spirited too. When you think that the community norms are that Kentucky Derby parties are off bunds, how can the college, not some wayward sorority, do this? I guess the answer is do as I say and I will do as I want. This will do no good for attracting Jewish students, faculty, or Dartmouths reputation.

Addednum: And another:

“the policy of maiming is a productive one” I thought it was Sharia law which had a policy of maiming (cut off the hands of thieves, for example), as a method of “attitude readjustment”? Should we mention female genital mutilation? See also:

Rutgers Women’s Studies Professor: Israel Mines The Organs Of Dead Muslims

Addendum: A longtime reader notes:

There are a few really unpleasant Israeli schools of Ultra-Orthodox theology that help feed the fetid stream from which people like Puar drink. I don’t know if you’re familiar with Rabbi Yitzchak Ginsburgh who is a very influential Kabbalist and head of a yeshiva in the West Bank. His writings argue, among other things, that if a Jew requires an organ for transplant, it is legitimate to seize one by force from a non-Jew.

Also, some years ago there was a scandal regarding a forensic institute in Israel that had removed tissue — corneas, bone etc. — from cadavers without authorization. The practice was stopped and a later article about the institute, published in a Swedish newspaper, included sensationalized claims.

Selective reading and quoting can therefore produce some hideous results. And that’s what idiots like Puar thrive on.

In order to accurately refute such people, though, it’s necessary to recognize that Israel, too, has its crazy fringe, and that the far-right religious parties are gaining political power and have an outsize voice. It’s true that thoughtful, ethical Israelis reject these views. But it’s true that these views exist and are loudly expressed.


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