Western academics stand up for Academic Freedom in open letter to government of Hungary

CEU’s new “N15” building in Budapest’s Nádros street.

A group calling itself the “Friends of CEU” issued the following open letter to the government of Hungary on March 30th, 2017 in response to proposed legislation that would effectively force Budapest’s Central European University to close its doors.  The open letter is signed by more than 120 academics, including a number of Hungarian heritage. Last updated to include more names on April 2 @ 4:00pm ET. 


Open Letter to the Government of Hungary

We are a group of North American social scientists and historians who have spent our careers researching Central Europe, Eastern Europe, and Eurasia. We consider ourselves to be friends of the people and countries of the region and have been inspired by the changes that have taken place since 1989.

In recent days we have been dismayed by the proposed legislation that would threaten to close Central European University. While phrased as a general set of regulations, the provisions affect only one university in the country. This subterfuge fools no one.

Central European University is a world-class institution that makes major contributions to the disciplines in which we work. It would be folly to close it on those grounds. But the issues at stake here are larger, specifically the universal human rights of freedom of expression and conscience. These are values for which generations of Hungarians fought and even perished in 1848, 1956, and 1989. Politicians in democracies when they assume power must be prepared to bear criticism and face the prospect of eventually losing power. The seeming desire of the Hungarian government to silence criticism and drive all alternatives from the field of political competition is short-sighted and contrary to those values. We will make the reasons for our consternation known to our own elected representatives, governments, and the public at large.

We thus declare our opposition to the proposed punitive legislation and express our full solidarity with the Rector, students, employees, and faculty of Central European University.

(Listed alphabetically by last name)

Farrell Ackerman, Director, Human Development Program, Professor, Department of Linguistics, UC San Diego

Hilary Appel, Professor of Government, Claremont McKenna College

Andrew Arato, Dorothy Hirshon Professor of Political and Social Theory, New School for Social Research

Mark R. Beissinger, Henry W. Putnam Professor of Politics, Princeton University

Zsuzsa Berend, Department of Sociology, UCLA

Sheri Berman, Professor of Political Science, Barnard College, Columbia University

Nancy Bermeo, PIIRS Senior Scholar and Professor of Politics Emerita, Princeton University

Michael Bernhard, Raymond and Miriam Ehrlich Chair, Department of Political Science, University of Florida

Jack Bielasiak, Professor, Department of Political Science, Indiana University

Gavril Bilev, Assistant Professor of Political Science, Merrimack College

Frank Biess, Professor of History, University of California-San Diego

Melissa Bokovoy, Chair and Professor of History, University of New Mexico

Cristina Bradatan, Associate professor of Sociology, Texas Tech University

Brian Porter-Szűcs, Thurnau Professor of History, University of Michigan

David L. Brown, International Professor of Development Sociology, Cornell University

Chad Bryant, Associate Professor of History, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Rogers Brubaker, Professor of Sociology and UCLA Foundation Chair, University of California, Los Angeles

Yitzhak M. Brudny, Jay and Leonie Darwin Chair in Soviet and Eastern European Studies, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Valerie Jane Bunce, Aaron Binenkorb Professor of International Studies and Professor of Government at Cornell University

Michael Burawoy, Professor of Sociology, University of California Berkeley

Lenka Bustikova, Assistant Professor of Political Science, School of Politics and Global Studies, Arizona State University

Andy Bruno, Assistant Professor of History and Environmental Studies, Northern Illinois University

Holly Case, Associate Professor of History, Brown University

Alin M. Ceobanu, Associate Professor of Sociology and European Studies, University of Florida

Nitsan Chorev, Harmon Family Professor of Sociology and International and Public Affairs. Brown University

Daniel Czitrom, Professor of History, Mount Holyoke College

Thomas J. Csordas, Professor and Chair, Department of Anthropology, Dr. James Y. Chan Presidential Chair in Global Health, University of California, San Diego

Jane Leftwich Curry, Professor of Political Science, Santa Clara University

Istvan Deak, Seth Low Professor Emeritus of History, Columbia University

Kevin Deegan-Krause, Associate Professor of Political Science, Wayne State University

Larry Diamond, Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University

Daina Eglitis, Associate Professor of Sociology, George Washington University

Grzegorz Ekiert, Laurence  A. Tisch Professor of Government and Director Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University

Mark Elliott, Mark Schwartz Professor of Chinese and Inner Asian History, Harvard University

Matthew Evangelista, President White Professor of History and Political Science, and Director, Judith Reppy Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies, Cornell University

Gil Eyal, Professor and Chair,Department of Sociology, Columbia University

Barbara J Falk, Associate Professor, Canadian Forces College

Melissa Feinberg, Associate Professor of History, Rutgers University

Carole Fink, Humanities Distinguished Professor of History Emerita, The Ohio State University

Evgeny Finkel, Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Affairs, George Washington University

Benjamin Frommer, Associate Professor of History, Northwestern University

Timothy Frye, Chair, Department of Political Science, Marshall Shulman Professor of Post-Soviet Politics, Columbia University

Francis Fukuyama, Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow and Mosbacher Director, Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law, Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Stanford University

Venelin I. Ganev, Professor of Political Science, Miami University of Ohio

Zsuzsa Gille, Professor of Sociology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Eagle Glassheim, Associate Professor of History, University of British Columbia

Jeffrey C. Goldfarb, Michael E. Gellert Professor of Sociology, New School for Social Research

Paul Goode, Senior Lecturer in Russian Politics, University of Bath

Emily Greble, Associate Professor of History and East European Studies, Vanderbilt University

Anna Grzymala-Busse, President of the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies, Michelle and Kevin Douglas Professor of International Studies, Stanford University

Henry E. Hale, Professor of Political Science and International Affairs, George Washington University

Paul Hanebrink, Associate Professor of History, Rutgers University

S. Mohsin Hashim, Professor of Political Science, Director, Dana Honors Program, Muhlenberg College

Robert M. Hayden, Professor of Anthropology and Law, University of Pittsburgh

Marc M. Howard, Professor of Government and Law, Georgetown University

Aida Hozic, Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Florida

Jeffrey C. Isaac, James H. Rudy Professor of Political Science, Indiana University

John Ishiyama, University Distinguished Professor, University of North Texas

Wade Jacoby, Mary Lou Fulton Professor of Political Science, Brigham Young University

Krzysztof Jasiewicz, Ames Professor in Sociology and Anthropology, Washington and Lee University, Co-Editor, East European Politics and Societies

Alison Frank Johnson, Professor of History, Harvard University

Juliet Johnson, Professor of Political Science, McGill University

Ekrem Karakoc, Associate Professor of Political Science, Binghamton University

Peter J. Katzenstein, Walter S. Carpenter, Jr. Professor of International Studies Cornell University

Rüçhan Kaya, Visiting Assistant Professor of Political Science, Texas A&M University

R. Daniel Kelemen, Professor of Political Science, Rutgers University

Michael D. Kennedy, Professor of Sociology and International and Public Affairs, Brown University

Padraic Kenney, Chair, Department of International Studies, Professor of History and International Studies, Indiana University

Jeremy King, Professor of History, Mount Holyoke college

Herbert Kitschelt, George V. Allen Professor of International Relations, Department of Political Science, Duke University

Rebekah Klein-Pejšová, Associate Professor of History, Purdue University

Jeffrey Kopstein, Professor of Political Science, University of California, Irvine

Petia Kostadinova, Assistant Professor of Political Science,University of Illinois, Chicago

Markus Kreuzer, Professor of Political Science, Villanova University

Jan Kubik, Director, School of Slavonic and East European Studies, University College London

Anita Kurimay, Assistant Professor of History, Bryn Mawr College

Mark Kramer, Director of Cold War Studies, Harvard University

Amie Kreppel, Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Florida

Elena Krumova, Lecturer, Quantitative Methods in the Social Sciences, Columbia University

Dragan Kujundzic, Professor, Center for Jewish Studies, University of Florida

Martha Lampland, Professor of Sociology and Science Studies, University of California, San Diego

Katherine Lebow, Associate Professor of History, Christ Church, Oxford University

Anthony Levitas, Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs, Brown University

Isabela Mares, Professor of Political Science, Columbia University

Kyle L. Marquardt, Postdoctoral research fellow, V-Dem Institute, University of Gothenburg

Michael McFaul, Director, Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies; Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution, Professor, Department of Political Science, Stanford University

Kelly McMann, Associate Professor of Political Science, Case Western Reserve University

John S. Micgiel, Visiting Professor, East European Studies Center, University of Warsaw

Bryon Moraski, Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Florida

Alexander Motyl, Professor of Political Science, Rutgers University-Newark

Cas Mudde, Associate Professor, School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA), University of Georgia

Harris Mylonas, Associate Professor of Political Science and International Affairs, George Washington University

Norman Naimark, McDonnell Professor of East European Studies, Stanford University

Monika Nalepa, Associate Professor of Political Science, The University of Chicago

Conor O’Dwyer, Associate Professor of Political Science and European Studies, University of Florida

Mitchell A Orenstein, Professor, Russian and East European Studies and Chair, Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, University of Pennsylvania

David Ost, 2010-2105 Joseph DiGangi Professor of Political Science, Hobart and William Smith Colleges

Cynthia Paces, Professor of History, The College of New Jersey

Susan C. Pearce, Associate Professor of Sociology, East Carolina University

Kevin M. F. Platt, Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Term Professor in the Humanities, Chair, Program in Comparative Literature and Literary Theory

Serhii Plokhii, Professor of History, Harvard University

Antony Polonsky, Emeritus Professor of Holocaust Studies, Brandeis University

Grigore Pop-Eleches, Professor of Politics and International Affairs, Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University

Graeme Robertson, Professor, Department of Political Science, University of North Carolina

Akos Rona-Tas, Professor and Chair of Sociology, University of California, San Diego

Marsha Rozenblit, Harvey M. Meyerhoff Professor of Jewish History, University of Maryland

Peter Rutland, Professor of Government, Wesleyan University

Daniel Schlafly, Professor of History, Director, Russian and East European Area Studies Program, Saint Louis University

Philippe Schmitter, Professor of Political Science Emeritus, European University Institute and Stanford University

Edward Schatz, Associate Professor and Department Chair, University of Toronto, Mississauga

Richard Scher, Professor of Political Science Emeritus, University of Florida

Marci Shore, Associate Professor of History, Yale University

David Stark, Arthur Lehman Professor of Sociology, Columbia University

Anna Seleny, Professor of the Practice of International Politics, The Fletcher School, Tufts University

Regina Smyth, Associate Professor of Political Science, Indiana University

Hillel David Soifer, Associate Professor of Political Science, Temple University

Scott Spector, Professor of History and German Studies, University of Michigan

Jelena Subotic, Associate Professor of Political Science, Georgia State University

Milan Svolik, Associate Professor of Political Science, Yale University

Anna Szemere, Independent Scholar and Educator

Vera Tabakova, Associate Professor of Economics, East Carolina University

Sidney Tarrow, Maxwell Upson Professor of Government Emeritus, Cornell University

Joshua Tucker, Professor of Politics and Director, Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia, New York University

Hubert Tworzecki, Associate Professor of Political Science, Emory University

Daniel Unowsky, Professor of History, University of Memphis

Milada Anna Vachudova, Jean Monnet Chair in EU Studies and Associate Professor of Political Science, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Julia Verkholantsev, Associate Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures, University of Pennsylvania

Mark von Hagen, Interim Director, Melikian Center for Russian, Eurasian and East European Studies and Professor of History and Global Studies, Arizona State University

Lucan Way, Professor of Political Science, University of Toronto

Catherine Wanner, Professor of History and Anthropology, Penn State University

Steven Lloyd Wilson, Research Fellow, Varieties of Democracy Institute, University of Gothenburg

Nancy M. Wingfield, Presidential Research Professor, Northern Illinois University

Jason Wittenberg, Associate Professor of Political Science, UC Berkeley

Sharon L. Wolchik, Professor of Political Science and International Affairs, The George Washington University

Larry Wolff, Julius Silver Professor of History, Director, Center for European and Mediterranean Studies, and Executive Director, Remarque Institute, New York University

Susan L. Woodward, Professor of Political Science, The Graduate Center of the City University of New York

Christine D. Worobec, Distinguished Research Professor Emerita of History, Northern Illinois University

Genevieve Zubrzycki, Associate Professor of Department of Sociology, Director of the Weiser Center for Europe and Eurasia, University of Michigan

Share
Updated: April 3, 2017 — 6:50 am
Newslanc.com © 2016