The Void Speaks Back: Black Suffering as the Unthought of the American Studies Association’s Academic Boycott of Israel

#BlackErasure #Israel

Out of Nowhere

By Nicholas Brady

The black is off the map, and it is from this void that I encounter the discourse around the recent passing of a resolution by the American Studies Association in support of the international boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement against the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

In spite of good intentions it must be said frankly that the ASA resolution arises from an anti-black calculus that must be called out and dealt with. Anti-blackness may seem like a secondary concern, a voided subject to avoid, but for the duration of this piece the shadow of this conversation around Israel will get center stage — the shadow, the void will speak back and it is imperative to listen.

In the debate that has emerged around the resolution, there is a deafening silence, one that screams at me every time I read an article either for or against the…

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