Re: Call for a cultural boycott of Israel

From: shelly silver (email suppressed)
Date: Wed Dec 06 2006 - 20:26:23 PST

dear karen treanor:
did you read john berger's letter? an excerpt: "i'm convinced, in
any case, that its application should not be systematised; it has to
come fro a personal choice based on a personal assessment...." as an
example, i wouldn't boycott screening the work of the israeli
filmmaker avi mograbi:

excerpt from john berger's letter follows:

> I would like to make a few personal remarks about this world-wide appeal
>to teachers, intellectuals and artists to join the cultural boycott of the
>state of Israel, as called for by over a hundred Palestinian academics and
>artists, and - very importantly - also by a number of Israeli public
>figures, who outspokenly oppose their country©–s illegal occupation of the
>Palestine territories of the West Bank and Gaza. Their call is attached,
>together with my OEAfter Guernica©— drawing. I hope you will feel able to add
>your signature, to the attached letter, which we intend to publish in
>national newspapers....
>How to apply a boycott? For academics its perhaps a little clearer - a
>question of declining invitations from state institutions and explaining
>why. For invited actors, musicians, jugglers or poets it can be more
>complicated. I©–m convinced, in any case, that its application should not be
>systematised; it has to come from a personal choice based on a personal
>For instance. An important mainstream Israeli publisher today is asking
>to publish thre of my books. I intend to apply the boycott with an
>explanation. There exist, however, a few small, marginal Israeli publishers
>who expressly work to encourage exchanges and bridges between Arabs and
>Israelis, and if one of them should ask to publish something of mine, I
>would unhesitatingly agree and furthermore waive aside any question of
>author's royalties. I don't ask other writers supporting the boycott to
>come necessarily to exactly the same conclusion. I simply offer an example.
>What is important is that we make our chosen protests together, and that
>we speak out, thus breaking the silence of connivance maintained by those
>who claim to represent us, and thus ourselves representing, briefly by our
>common action, the incalculable number of people who have been appalled by
>recent events but lack the opportunity of making their sense of outrage
>John Berger

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