MESA - Middle East Studies Association

Referendum Ballot on 2014 Resolution

We encourage all Full MESA Members (fellow, honorary fellow and student) to cast their vote on the resolution that was passed at the 2014 Members Meeting in Washington, DC on Monday, November 24, 2014.


Whereas, Members of various academic associations in North America have sought to organize forums for discussion and debate of the 2005 Palestinian civil society call for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) against Israel; and
Whereas, A number of academic associations have held membership votes on whether to endorse the BDS call; and
Whereas, We acknowledge that members of the Middle East Studies Association (MESA) have differing views on the necessity or productivity of such actions; and
Whereas, Individual scholars and academic associations organizing, participating in, or commenting on such discussions, debates, and votes have been subjected to efforts to silence and/or punish them; now, therefore be it
Resolved, That the MESA membership
Affirms that calls for institutional boycott, divestment, and/or sanctions are protected free speech and legitimate forms of non-violent political action; and
Affirms the right of MESA members to engage in open and transparent discussion of the boycott of Israeli academic institutions in the context of the Annual Meeting and other forums; and
Affirms the right of the memberships of all organizations to discuss, debate, and endorse or not endorse the BDS campaign; and
Deplores the measures of intimidation directed against the American Studies Association, the Association for Asian American Studies, the Critical Ethnic Studies Association, and the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association, among other associations, and some of their individual members, as we MESA members uphold the principles of free speech that protect the expression of such views and actions; and
Strongly urges MESA program committees to organize discussions at MESA annual meetings, and the MESA Board of Directors to create opportunities over the course of the year that provide platforms for a sustained discussion of the academic boycott and foster careful consideration of an appropriate position for MESA to assume.

Discussion: MESA members are encouraged to join in a discussion about the resolution on the MESA Members Discussion Forum. Log-in to your myMESA account (, click on the Membership button on the left side of the screen and then on "Member discussion forum" under "Quicklinks" on the right side of the screen.

What You Are Voting For: The resolution passed at the 2014 Annual MESA Members Meeting in Washington, DC (resolution above).

Eligibility: Only Full Members (fellow, honorary fellow and student) are eligible to vote. Associate members are not eligible.

Instructions: You may cast your vote electronically below. If you would prefer to print a ballot and mail it to the MESA Secretariat, please contact Sara Palmer at or 520-626-4753.

In order for your ballot to be counted, you must supply your NAME and E-MAIL address for verification purposes. You must be a current MESA member to vote; your membership status will be verified. If you have any problems, please contact Sara Palmer at the MESA Secretariat or 520-626-4753.

Deadline: to be counted, all ballots—electronic and by post—must be in the office of the Secretariat by no later than Monday, February 9, 2015, AT 11:59 P.M. MOUNTAIN STANDARD TIME.  


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Please vote YES or NO on the resolution passed at the 2014 MESA Members Meeting on Monday, November 24, 2014, in Washington, DC. A yes vote means that you support the resolution becoming association policy. A no vote means that you do not.








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