UMN Faculty Statement on the Visit of Dr. Condoleezza Rice

<For a list of signatures as of 5pm on Wednesday, April 16th, please scroll down to the end of the letter. The letter was sent to President Kaler and Dean Schwartz with the first 213 signatures listed below. We have left the petition open so that faculty may continue to sign.>

<Note: We ask that only UMN faculty sign. Thank you.>


On April 17, 2014, former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will visit the University of Minnesota to give the Distinguished Carlson Lecture, an annual activity of the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, endowed by a private gift from the Carlson Foundation. This year, the lecture has an additional significance, as it is part of the series of events entitled, "Keeping Faith with a Legacy of Justice," sponsored by the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the American Civil Rights Act of 1964. As the flagship speaker for the main event of the series, Dr. Rice is explicitly being honored as a civil rights leader and being brought in to speak about civil rights given her purported leadership and expertise on American civil rights.


We, the undersigned University of Minnesota faculty, are grateful to the Carlson Family for their past and current generosity. The Carlson family and Foundation have supported a variety of important projects on campus over the years, and have greatly enriched our environment.


We have no objection to Dr. Rice visiting our campus. Indeed, as strong advocates of the right to free speech, we welcome anyone - including Dr. Rice - into our community to engage in an open exchange of ideas.


In that very spirit of free expression, however, and in our commitment to the principles of truth and the common good that are inscribed above the entrance to Northrop Auditorium where Dr. Rice will speak, we object to the circumstances of this particular visit. While Dr. Rice is an accomplished African-American woman, the advancement of civil rights - the theme of this year's lecture series - is not central to her legacy. Indeed, as a leading national security official during the entirety of the Bush administration, she bears responsibility for substantial violations of civil liberties and civil rights that were carried out in the name of prosecuting the War on Terror.


Dr. Rice is welcome to speak on the University of Minnesota campus, but let's not ignore her record. As National Security Adviser in the critical period of 2001-05, Dr. Rice played a central role in the design and implementation of the Administration's policies, which legitimized the use of torture by redefining it to include only practices so severe as to induce organ failure. By this logic, "enhanced interrogation techniques" that had previously been defined as torture, such as waterboarding, were no longer defined as such and became standard practice in the War on Terror. Since the end of her tenure, Dr. Rice has defended the use of torture and has not publicly distanced herself from these decisions that violated both US and international law and resulted in severe violations of human rights.


Dr. Rice also supported the Administration's policy of rendition, whereby individuals were abducted and delivered by US authorities to "black sites" in third countries such as Egypt and Syria, countries that were known to subject prisoners to torture. This practice violated due process, since these individuals were detained without being given the opportunity to defend themselves. They were effectively found guilty without trial. And they were tortured. Since some detainees died while in custody, this practice was, in many circumstances, tantamount to authorizing extrajudicial execution.


Given the focus on free speech, Dr. Rice's role in formulating and implementing a policy of ideological exclusion is also relevant. The State Department she directed from 2005 until 2009 denied visas to numerous foreign scholars that the Administration deemed to be ideologically problematic, preventing scholars from assuming prestigious posts at American universities and from attending scholarly conferences.


Finally, we want to note that there are also human rights implications to the much reported high speaking fee being paid to Dr. Rice. Not only is this oversized payment a dubious priority in a time of economic hardship and austerity, it is also inconsistent with the civil rights movement's emphasis on economic justice.


We are proud to work at the University of Minnesota which, among its many strengths, is a hub for human rights education, and which hosts many important projects and discussions designed to promote human rights and human dignity. We, of course, support free speech as one of the core human rights that sustain an atmosphere of academic freedom and a democratic society. Accountability, in this case, must be central to that open debate.


Signed by:

1. Barbara A. Frey, Director, Human Rights Program, Institute for Global Studies

2. Alejandro Baer, Associate Professor of Sociology, Stephen C. Feinstein Chair in Holocaust & Genocide Studies

3. Stephen Meili, Professor, University of Minnesota Law School

4. Fionnuala Ni Aolain, Professor, Law School

5. David Weissbrodt, Professor, Law

6. Kathryn Sikkink, Emeritus Professor, Political Science

7. James Ron, Associate Professor and Stassen Chair of International Affairs, Department of Political Science and Humphrey School of Public Affairs

8. Greta Friedemann-Sánchez, Ph.D., Associate Professor, International Development Practice and Public Policy, Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs

9. Lisa Hilbink, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science

10. Ana Forcinito, Professor, Spanish and Portuguese Studies

11. Joachim Savelsberg, Professor, Department of Sociology

12. Leigh A Payne, Senior Researcher in Human Rights

13. Kristi Rudelius-Palmer, Human Rights Center Co-Director/Adjunct Professor, Human Rights Center/Law School

14. Samuel L. Myers, Jr., Director and Roy Wilkins Professor of Human Relations and Social Justice, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

15. Joe Soss, Cowles Professor for the Study of Public Service, Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs

16. Teri L. Caraway, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science

17. Ron Krebs, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science

18. Joseph E. Schwartzberg, Distinguished International Professor Emeritus

19. Ron Aminzade, Professor, Department of Sociology

20. Allen Isaacman, Regents Professor, Department of History

21. Naomi Scheman; Professor; Departments of Philosophy and Gender and Women, & Sexuality Studies

22. David Pellow, Professor, Department of Sociology

23. JB Shank, Associate Professor, Department of History and Director of the Center for Early Modern History

24. Riv-Ellen Prell, Professor, American Studies

25. Michael Goldman, Professor, Department of Sociology and Global Studies

26. Vinay Gidwani, Associate Professor, Deparment of Geography and Institute for Global Studies

27. Jigna Desai; Chair and Associate Professor; Department of Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies and Program of Asian and American Studies

28. Paula Rabinowitz; Professor; Department of English, Language/Literature

29. Sarah Holtman, Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy

30. Bianet Castellanos, Associate Professor, American Studies

31. John Wallace, Professor, Department of Philosophy

32. Stuart McLean, Associate Professor, Institute for Global Studies and Department of Anthropology

33. Ana Paula Ferreira, Professor, Portuguese Studies

34. Thomas Pepper, Associate Professor, Cultural Studies and Comparative Literature

35. Kathy Quick, Assistant Professor, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

36. Ajay Skaria, Associate Professor, Department of History and Institute for Global Studies

37. Geoffrey Hellman, Professor, Department of Philosophy

38. William Messing, Professor, Department of Mathematics

39. Jack Zipes, Professor Emeritus, Department of German, Scandinavian and Dutch

40. Christophe Wall-Romana, Associate Professor, Department of French and Italian

41. Rick McCormick; Professor; Department of German, Scandinavian & Dutch

42. Tracey Deutsch, Associate Professor, Department of History

43. Martha Tappen, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology

44. MJ Maynes, Professor, Department of History

45. Lisa Sun-Hee Park, Professor, Departments of Sociology and Asian American Studies

46. Michelle M Hamilton, Associate Professor, Spanish & Portuguese

47. Joan DeJaeghere; Associate Professor; Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy and Development

48. Amy Kaminsky, Professor, Department of Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies and Institute for Global Studies

49. Phillip K. Peterson, M.D., Professor Emeritus of Medicine, University of Minnesota Medical School

50. Cawo Abdi, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology

51. Kirsten Fischer, Associate Professor, Department of History

52. Elizabeth Heger Boyle, Professor, Department of Sociology

53. Rachel Schurman, Professor, Department of Sociology and Global Studies

54. Karen-Sue Taussig, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology

55. Karen Ho, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology

56. Carl Elliott, Professor, Center for Bioethics

57. Diane Katsiaficas, Professor, Department of Art

58. Francis Harvey; Associate Professor; Department of Geography, Environment, Society

59. Tony C. Brown; Associate Professor; Department of English, Language and Literature

60. Stephen Gudeman, Professor, Department of Anthropology

61. William O. Beeman, Professor, Department of Anthropology

62. Keya Ganguly, Professor, Department of Cultural Studies and Comparative Literature

63. Jennifer L. Pierce, Professor, American Studies

64. Teresa Gowan, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology

65. Frances Vavrus; Professor; Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development

66. Kathleen E. Hull, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology

67. Joe Owens, Professor, Department of Philosophy

68. Annie Hill; Assistant Professor; Rhetoric, Department of Communication Studies

69. Gloria Raheja, Professor, Institute for Global Studies and Department of Anthrolopogy

70. Kevin P. Murphy, Associate Professor, Department of History

71. Deborah Levison, Professor, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

72. Guy Gibbon, Professor Emeritus, Department of Anthropology

73. Sarah Parkinson, Assistant Professor, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

74. Amy Sheldon, Professor, Communication Studies

75. Leigh Turner, Associate Professor, Center for Bioethics, School of Public Health, & College of Pharmacy

76. Elaine Tyler May, Regents Professor, Departments of American Studies and History

77. Lary May, Distinguished Teaching Professor, Emeritus, Departments of American Studies and History

78. Ascan Koerner, Associate Professor, Department of Communication Studies

79. Yuichiro Onishi, Associate Professor, African American & African Studies & Asian American Studies

80. David Valentine, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology

81. Enid Logan, Associate Professor, Sociology

82. Qadri Ismail, Associate Professor, English

83. Lisa Albrecht, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Social Justice, Social Work, CEHD

84. Steven Sperber, Professor, Mathematics

85. Gopalan Nadathur, Professor, Computer Science and Engineering

86. Roderick A. Ferguson, Professor, American Studies

87. Ameeta Kelekar, Associate Professor, Laboratory Medicine and Pathology

88. Roy T Cook, Associate Professor, Philosophy

89. M.J.Fitzgerald, Associate Professor, English Department and Creative Writing Program

90. Rose Brewer, Professor, African American & African Studies

91. George Henderson, Associate Professor, Department of Geography, Environment, and Society

92. Maria Damon, Professor, English

93. Jani Scandura, Associate Professor, English

94. Michael Gaudio, Associate Professor, Art History

95. Jennifer Gunn, Associate Professor and Chair, Program in the History of Medicine

96. Steven F. Ostrow, Professor and Chair, Art History

97. Laurie Ouellette, Associate Professor, Communication Studies

98. Susan Craddock, Professor, Institute for Global Studies and Department of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies

99. Keitha Lucas Hamann, Associate Professor, School of Music

100. Doug Hartmann, Professor, Sociology

101. Sonja Kuftinec, Professor, Theater Arts and Dance

102. Dominic Taylor, Associate Professor, Theatre Arts & Dance

103. Sumanth Gopinath, Associate Professor of Music Theory, School of Music

104. Michelle Mason, Associate Professor, Philosophy

105. Sara M. Evans, Regents Professor Emerita, History

106. Timothy Brennan, Professor, Cultural Studies & Comparative Literature; and English

107. James Dillon, Professor, School of Music

108. Klaas van der Sanden, Program Director, Institute for Global Studies

109. Keith Mayes, Associate Professor & Chair, African American & African Studies

110. David Samuels, Distinguished McKnight University Professor, Political Science

111. Bruce Braun; Professor; Department of Geography, Environment and Society

112. Hoon Song, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology

113. Juliette Cherbuliez, Associate Professor, French and Italian

114. Paul Garrett, Professor of Mathematics, School of Mathematics

115. Julia W Robinson, Professor, School of Architecture

116. Erin Kelly, Professor, Sociology

117. Hiromi Mizuno, Associate Professor, Department of History

118. Eva von Dassow, Associate Professor, Classical and Near Eastern Studies

119. Ruth-Ellen B. Joeres, Professor Emerita of German , Department of German, Scandinavian, and Dutch

120. David Chang, Associate Professor, Department of History

121. Jimmy Patiño, Assistant Professor, Department of Chicano & Latino Studies

122. Lois Cucullu, Associate Professor, English

123. Howard Lavine, Arleen Carlson Professor of Political Science and Psychology, Political Science

124. Bill Gleason, Associate Professor (retired), Laboratory Medicine & Pathology

125. Patrick J. McNamara, Associate Professor, Department of History

126. Joshua Page, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology

127. Anne Lazaraton, Associate Professor, Writing Studies

128. Mark Pedelty, Associate Professor, Communication Studies

129. Gilbert Tostevin, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology

130. Subir K. Banerjee, CSE Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Institute for Rock Magnetism, School of Earth Sciences

131. Jean M Langford, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology

132. Irene Duranczyk, Associate Professor, Postsecondary Teaching and Learning, College of Education and Human Development

133. david karjanen, Assistant Professor, American Studies

134. Marc Hirschmann, Professor, Earth Sciences

135. Charlotte Melin; Professor; German, Scandinavian and Dutch

136. Hyman Berman, Professor Emeritus, History

137. Na'im Madyun, Associate Dean Undergraduate and Diversity Programs, CEHD

138. Nancy Luxon, Assistant Professor, Political Science

139. Maria Brewer, Associate Professor, Department of French and Italian

140. Diane Willow, Associate Professor, Art / Gender, Women, & Sexuality Studies

141. Raúl Marrero-Fente, Professor, Spanish and Law

142. Lorena Munoz; Assistant Professor; Department of Geography, Environment, Society

143. Thomas Wolfe, Associate Professor, Department of History

144. Matthias Rothe; Assistant Professor; German, Scandinavian & Durch

145. Siobhan Craig, Associate Professor, Department of English

146. Monika Zagar, Professor of Scandinavian, GSD

147. Leslie Morris; Associate Professor; Department of German, Scandinavian and Dutch

148. Dr. Hilde Hoffmann; Visiting Professor; German, Scandinavian and Dutch

149. Jeffrey Broadbent, Professor, Sociology

150. Elizabeth Belfiore, Professor Emerita, Classical and Near Eastern Studies

151. Andrew D. Cohen, Professor Emeritus, Second Language Studies

152. August H. Nimtz, Professor, Political Science/African American and African Studies

153. Mary Vavrus, Associate Professor , Communication Studies Department

154. Catherine Guisan, Visiting Assistant Professor , Political Science

155. Hernan Vidal, Professor emeritus, Department of Spanish and Portuguese Studies

156. Charles J. Sugnet, Associate Professor, Department of English

157. Jennifer Karns Alexander; Associate Professor; History of Science, Technology, and Medicine, and Department of Mechanical Engineering

158. Ragui Assaad, Professor, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

159. Jodi Sandfort, Associate Professor, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

160. Arun Saldanha; Associate Professor; Geography,Environment,Society

161. Katherine Fennelly, Professor emerita, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

162. Diana Burgess, Associate Professor, Medicine

163. Angelica Afanador-Pujol, Assistant Professor, Art History

164. David L. Fox, Associate Professor, Department of Earth Sciences

165. Patricia Lorcin, Professor, Department of History

166. Jaime Hanneken, Associate Professor, Spanish and Portuguese Studies

167. Carol Chomsky, Professor, Law School

168. John Song, Associate Professor, Center for Bioethics Department of Medicine

169. Betsy J. Kerr, Associate Professor, Department of French and Italian

170. Melissa Partin, Associate Professor, Department of Medicine

171. George Spangler; Professor Emeritus; Dept. of Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology

172. Carol A. Klee, Professor and Chair, Spanish and Portuguese Studies

173. Jane Blocker, Professor, Art History

174. Eileen Sivert, Associate Professor, French and Italian

175. Zenzele Isoke; Assistant Professor; Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies

176. Melissa Stone, Professor, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

177. Daniel Schroeter, Professor, Department of History

178. Michelle Phelps, Assistant Professor, Sociology

179. Karen Miksch, Associate Professor of Higher Education and Law, Postsecondary Teaching and Learning

180. Joan Liaschenko, Professor, Center for Bioethics and School of Nursing

181. Michael B. Kac, Professor, Department of Philosophy and Program in Linguistics

182. Richard McGehee, Professor, School of Mathematics

183. Dennis Hejhal, Professor, School of Mathematics

184. Joseph Gerteis, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology

185. Emi Ito, Professor, Earth Sciences

186. Donald Kahn, Professor (retired), School of Mathematics

187. Joan C. Tronto, Professor, Department of Political Science

188. John Baxter, Professor, Mathematics

189. Joel Eisinger, Associate Professor, Art History, UMM

190. Abigail Neely; Assistant Professor; Department of Geography, Environment and Society

191. Clint Carroll, Assistant Professor, American Indian Studies

192. Margaret Werry, Associate Professor, Theatre Arts and Dance

193.Eric Van Wyk, Associate Professor, Department of Computer Science and Engineering

194.Arthur Walzer, Professor, Communication Studies

195.Mats Heimdahl, Professor, Computer Science and Engineering

196. Ronald Walter Greene, Professor, Communication Studies

197. Jennifer Marshall, Associate Professor, Department of Art History

198. Jonathan Sachs, Associate Professor, Biomedical Engineering

199. Richard Lee, Professor, Psychology

200. Ananya Chatterjea, Professor, Theater Arts and Dance and Director, Dance ProgramTheater Arts and Dance

201. Charles Doss, Assistant Professor, Statistics

202. Rodney G. Loper, Professor Emeritus, Counseling Services and Psychology

203. Brenda Child, Associate Professor, Department of American Studies

204.Joan A Smith, Professor, Department of Theater Arts and Dance

205. Elaine Tarone, Professor, CLA and CEHD

206. Frank C Miller, Professor Emeritus, Department of Anthropology

207. Paul Porter, Professor, Department of Agronomy and Plant Genetics

208. Donald Wyse, Professor, Agronomy and Plant

209.Patricia Walker, Associate Professor, Department of Medicine

210. Constance Sullivan, Associate Professor Emerita, Spanish and Portuguese Studies

211. Cindy Garcia, Assistant Professor, Theater Arts and Dance

212. Jason McGrath, Associate Professor, Asian Languages and Literatures

213. Ernest Davenport, Associate Professor, Educational Psychology


Departmental affiliation is provided for identification purposes only and is not intended to reflect the opinion of the University of Minnesota.

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