In re the matter of Professor Richard Ned Lebow, of King’s College London, and Professor Simona Sharoni, of Merrimack College and a member of the International Studies Association, the ISA’s Executive Committee has spoken.
I demur from the ISA’s politically correct (if ever there were an oxymoron, here is one) position, in particular their Item 7.
7) … Although you explained that your comment was intended as a joking reference to an old, cultural trope, your email was not apologetic and PRR (and eventually ExComm) found that it was marginalizing and trivializing Prof. Sharoni’s reaction to your comment and that it was an attempt to intimidate her….
It was, in fact, a joke–funny or not depending on the audience, but clearly a joke, nonetheless. Indeed, I didn’t think it that funny, if only because it’s so old and used up.
- no apology was warranted
- Sharoni’s manufactured overreaction deserved marginalization and trivialization
- There was no attempt to intimidate, and if Sharoni claimed she was, she either is a fragile snowflake of breathtaking dimension, or she carefully manufactured that response as well.