To Prof Gerhart
President of the American University of Cairo
113 Kasr El Aini Str.
Dear Mr. President, Febr. 5, 1999
it has been brought to our knowledge, that your University is presently
undertaking measures against Samia Mehrez, Professor of Modern Arabic Literature
at the American University of Cairo, and highly qualified and respected scholar
in her special field of study.
Protesting vehemently against the campaign of terror and intimidation against
Prof. Mehrez, our FOUNDATION IBN RUSHD, FUND for FREEDOM of THOUGHT,
founded to achieve and hold up aspirations for progress in the Arab World for
democracy, liberty, equality, human rights and social justice, appeals to You to
do Your utmost to refrain from taking any action which endangers academic
freedom and dignity of scholars.
The literary works of MUHAMMAD SHUKRY, SON’ALLAH IBRAHIM and AL-TAYYIB SALIH
belong to the distinguished achievements of modern Arabic Literature and, as You
certainly know, have been translated into many languages and win increasing
numbers of readers, who appreciate them all over the world.
We no longer live in the Middle Ages, and the removal from the shelves
of the AUC Bookstore of works that are condemned by self-appointed
custodians of public morality reminds us of medieval inquisitors measures.
Is it not the duty of a modern university to enable scholars to exercise their
duties within the framework of academic freedom and to ensure their right to
analyze critically works of literature and to contrive the artistic values of
modern Arabic Literature.
Committee advisers Members of the board
pp Dr. Ali Hachicho pp Nabil Bushnaq