Exclusive Original Document: Norman Finkelstein Placed on “Administrative Leave”; InsideHigherEd Interviewed Prof. Kirstein on Doctor Finkelstein Persecution

This egregious violation of academic freedom both during and after the tenure application of Dr Norman Finkelstein has reached new levels of arbitrariness. Dr Finkelstein is not being allowed to teach or assume any professorial duties during his terminal year at DePaul. If there were “behavior” that led to these sanctions, Dr Finkelstein is entitled to an adversarial hearing and the right to counsel. An administration cannot simply deny a professor the right to teach on the basis of unsubstantiated charges. Yet the following is the current status of Dr Finkelstein at DePaul University. Helmut Epp and “HE” is the provost of DePaul.

From: “Epp, Helmut”
To: “‘nfinkels@depaul.edu'” , ‘Norman Finkelstein’
CC: “‘Suchar, Charles'” , “‘mbudde@depaul.edu'”
Subject: administrative leave
Date: Fri, 24 Aug 2007 16:10:57 -0500
MIME-Version: 1.0
Received: from webmail.cti.depaul.edu ([]) by bay0-mc8-f11.bay0.hotmail.com with Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.2668); Fri, 24 Aug 2007 14:10:59 -0700
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Professor Finkelstein:

You have been assigned to an administrative leave, with full pay and employee benefits, for the academic year 2007-2008. You will have no teaching responsibilities or class assignments. You have been given this administrative leave based on departmental and college needs and because of your behavior at the end of the Spring quarter, which was discussed with you in detail at that time.


See InsideHigherEd for the latest information. Scott Jaschik links my blog as a source of commentary on this situation:

“Finkelstein’s supporters also say that it violates academic norms to create needless difficulties, like taking away office space, during a terminal year, a difficult time for any professor. “A professor who has been denied tenure should be treated with the utmost respect and consideration and not with an over abundance of Schadenfreude,” wrote Peter N. Kirstein, on his blog. Kirstein is a professor of history at Saint Xavier University and a leader of the Illinois chapter of the AAUP, which has been critical of DePaul’s review of Finkelstein’s tenure case.”

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