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Culture for Coexistence letter to the Guardian: Israel needs cultural bridges, not boycotts – letter from JK Rowling, Simon Schama and others

For a full list of signatories, please see: https://cultureforcoexistence.org/letter-to-the-guardian/

Quotes from signatories: 

Loraine da Costa, Chair of Culture for Coexistence:

“I believe that the call for a cultural boycott of Israel is fundamentally flawed and morally wrong.  Culture is a unique way of to engaging with, listening to and learning from ‘the other’ and to caste away this opportunity can only have a negative impact.”

Maajid Nawaz, Co-Founder and Chairman of Quilliam:

“As a British author, I would be mortified if my work was censored or affected in any way around the world due to the actions of my government – such as the invasion of Iraq, which I incidentally opposed – or due to a political position taken by any other fellow British writer. Policies that impose collective responsibility, especially on the artistic and creative communities who usually challenge the status quo within their own cultures, must be resisted across the board.”

Sir Paul Ruddock, Chairman of the Victoria & Albert Museum:

“Israel is one of few countries in the Middle East that cares for and preserves its cultural heritage from all religions and periods. At a time when so much of the patrimony of middle eastern countries is being destroyed by iconoclasts, it is more important than ever to lend support to those countries which are seeking to protect and preserve it.”

Lord Grade, former BBC Chairman:

“Freedom of expression and artistic freedoms are the cornerstones of democracy. Attempts to single out the democratic State of Israel for boycotts of any kind have no place in the free world; they are a tool of totalitarianism. I am very pleased to have signed this letter with such a diverse group.”

Lord Weidenfeld, publisher, philanthropist, and newspaper columnist:

“Narrow-mindedness, cultural prejudice is the first step to barbarism and must be fought ruthlessly.”

Iwona Blazwick, Director of the Whitechapel Art Gallery:

“Dialogue has to be better than boycott. I very much appreciate that you are creating a public platform for those of us who believe in the power of culture.”

Press:

Guardian: Star authors call for Israeli-Palestinian dialogue rather than boycotts

TIME Magazine: J.K. Rowling, Hilary Mantel and Other Celebrities Sign Letter Opposing Cultural Boycott of Israel

Deadline: J.K. Rowling, Daniel Battsek & Other Brits Write Open Letter Opposing Cultural Boycott Of Israel

The Stage: Zoe Wanamaker and Sonia Friedman join calls urging the arts not to boycott Israel

The Daily Beast: Cutting Through the Boycott, Divest, Sanction BS About Israel

JTA: J.K. Rowling, 150 prominent Brits come out against boycotting Israel

Times of Israel: J. K. Rowling tops list of UK artists opposing Israel boycott

Haaretz: Israel Needs Cultural Bridges, Not Boycotts Say JK Rowling, Simon Schama and 150 British Cultural Figures

Jewish Chronicle: JK Rowling leads cultural figures in opposing Israel boycott

Jewish News: JK Rowling leads 150 cultural figures in condemning Israel boycotts

Forward: J.K. Rowling Just Signed a Letter Against BDS

The Tower: 150 British Artists, Including J.K. Rowling, Sign Letter Opposing BDS

i24 News: J.K. Rowling signs anti-BDS petition

JNS.org: Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling among U.K. artists opposing boycott of Israel

Arutz Sheva: British artists speak out against Israel boycotts

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