The principle of academic freedom is designed to make sure that powers outside the university, including government and corporations, are not able to control the curriculum or intervene in extra-mural speech.
It’s my view that gender is culturally formed, but it’s also a domain of agency or freedom and that it is most important to resist the violence that is imposed by ideal gender norms, especially against those who are gender different, who are nonconforming in their gender presentation.
A challenge to the right of Israel to exist can be construed as a challenge to the existence of the Jewish people only if one believes that Israel alone keeps the Jewish people alive or that all Jews invest their sense of perpetuity in the state of Israel in its current or traditional forms.
Race and class are rendered distinct analytically only to produce the realization that the analysis of the one cannot proceed without the other. A different dynamic it seems to me is at work in the critique of new sexuality studies.
It seems, though, that historically we have now reached a position in which Jews cannot legitimately be understood always and only as presumptive victims.
I’m a professor of comparative literature, among other things, so I’m able to read in a couple of other languages, and I understand that not everyone is, not everyone can, although it is quite stunning how many people do read Spanish in the United States, but moving between languages is also extremely helpful.
The point is not to stay marginal, but to participate in whatever network of marginal zones is spawned from other disciplinary centers and which, together, constitute a multiple displacement of those authorities.
I am much more open about categories of gender, and my feminism has been about women’s safety from violence, increased literacy, decreased poverty and more equality.
My parents were practicing Jews. My mother grew up in an orthodox synagogue, and after my grandfather died, she went to a conservative synagogue and a little later ended up in a reform synagogue. My father was in reform synagogues from the beginning.
In the earliest years of the AIDS crisis, there were many gay men who were unable to come out about the fact that their lovers were ill, A, and then dead, B. They were unable to get access to the hospital to see their lover, unable to call their parents and say, ‘I have just lost the love of my life.’