[This is not an official statement from the Society of Architectural Historians.]

Thea Abu El-Haj, “The Places We Carry” (oil pastel on paper, 10”x10”)

Statement by Scholars of the Constructed Environment

As historians and theorists of architecture and the constructed environment, our heartbreak and sense of professional responsibility compel us to speak plainly about genocide as we see it unfolding. We grieve the loss of lives in Palestine and Israel, which impacts all caught in the present cycle of settler colonial violence perpetrated by the governments of Israel, the United States, and many other powers at a distance. Our solidarity with the anticolonial liberation movement in Palestine is consistent with our solidarity with all those who experience racism, particularly structural racism. Our call for Palestinian liberation goes hand in hand with our concern for the dignity and futures of all people.

Our scholarship teaches us that the structural violence that impacts Palestine has been enacted historically by apartheid in the physical environment and through the manufacturing of complicit knowledge formations that enable epistemicide. We note the militarism, extractivist interests, and colonialism that benefit from the production of war in Palestine. A century of dispossession and settlement prefaces the current urbicide of Gaza, while lives, homes, heritages, and futures have been destroyed. The misuses of archaeology and landscape narratives to legitimate occupation and seizure of territory and the construction of infrastructures of control in Palestine are unconscionable. Academic institutions everywhere must work toward an end to a campaign against Gaza that disproportionately kills children, targets healthcare workers and journalists to silence them, and razes schools and hospitals, while systematically harassing students and academics around the world.

There has been retaliation against individuals who advocate for Palestinian liberation, and speaking out on this issue is laden with fear. Yet, we believe that debating positions taken by governments is a demonstrative act of freedom of expression, not a form of hate speech. The conflation of the two is a perpetuation of violence and normalization of authoritarianism. Our statement follows our core professional competence, a foundation that forms a key element of academic freedom. Our commitment and perspectives stem from our dedication to creating public knowledge and interpretive tools to understand history as a vital dimension of the present. 

We call for and commit to open forums for teaching and learning. We call on scholarly associations, such as the Society of Architectural Historians (SAH), the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA), the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP), the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (CELA), the College Art Association (CAA), the Society of American City and Regional Planning History (SACRPH), and the Architectural Humanities Research Association (AHRA) to take a stand against racism of all kinds, consistent with their statements on academic freedom and anti-racism (herehereherehere, and here), and not make an exception of Palestine. We urge organizations such as the European Architectural History Network (EAHN), the Society of Architectural Historians Great Britain (SAHGB), and the Society of Architectural Historians, Australia and New Zealand (SAHANZ) to join this call. 

We owe it to each other to speak out as part of our collective liberation. None of us is free until all of us are free–to think, to learn, and to teach about the past and present with the fullest academic freedom, toward a liberated future.

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Scholars of the constructed environment in many disciplines have signed this statement of conscience, which was circulated peer-to-peer from December 3 to December 10, 2023. The list will continue to update here, and you are welcome to add your name here. We are grateful to Thea Abu El-Haj for sharing her artwork.

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A. Naomi Paik, University of Illinois, Chicago

AbdouMaliq Simone, the Urban Institute, University of Sheffield

Abidin Kusno, York University

Adrian Blackwell, University of Waterloo School of Architecture

Adrian Lahoud, RCA

Afrah M. H. Kashkool – University of Technology, Iraq 

Aimi Hamraie, Vanderbilt University 

Ala Tannir, Carnegie Mellon University School of Architecture

Alejandro Hernández Gálvez, Architect and Editor

Alessandro Petti

Aliki Economides, McEwen School of Architecture, Laurentian University

Alize Arican, Boston University

Amira Osman, Tshwane University of Technology

Amora McConnell, GSAPP

Ana María León, Harvard University

Ana Ozaki, University of Virginia

Anaid Yerena, University of Washington Tacoma

Ananya Roy, Urban Planning, UCLA

Andrew Herscher, University of Michigan

Andrew Ross, New York University 

Anne Holtrop, ETH Zurich

Anoma Pieris, University of Melbourne

Anooradha Iyer Siddiqi, Barnard College, Columbia University

Anthony Carfello

Ariella Aïsha Azoulay, Modern Culture & Media and Comparative Literature, Brown University

Ashley Dawson, City University of New York

Asif Siddiqi, Fordham University

Aslihan Gunhan, Cornell / Bilkent University 

Ateya Khorakiwala, Columbia University

Ayham Dalal, German University in Cairo

Beke Mchunu, UCD

Belgin Turan Özkaya, Middle East Technical University

Bess Williamson, School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Billy Fleming, University of Pennsylvania

Bruno De Meulder, Urbanism, University of Leuven

Burak Erdim, North Carolina State University

Caitlin Blanchfield, Cornell University 

Caitlin, Barnard College

Camillo Boano, Politecnico di Torino 

Can Bilsel

Caren Kaplan, UC Davis

Caroline Newton, TU Delft

Cassidy Johnson, University College London

Catalina Mejía 

Cecilia Chu, Chinese University of Hong Kong

Cesare Birignani, The City College of New York

Charlotte Malterre-Barthes, EPFL

Christina Schwenkel, University of California, Riverside

Christina Sharpe, York University 

Clare Davies

Cristina Cielo, FLACSO Ecuador

Curt Gambetta, Dartmouth College

Cynthia Franklin, University of Hawai’i 

Dana Sajdi, Boston College

Daniel Cardoso Llach, Carnegie Mellon University 

Dena Qaddumi, LSE

Deniz Turker, Rutgers

Dima Srouji, Royal College of Art

Dorothee Kreutzfeldt, Wits University

Douglas Spencer, Iowa State University

dubravka sekulić, Royal College of Art, London UK

Eduardo Augusto Costa, University of São Paulo 

Elizabeth Dean Hermann, RISD

Elsa MH Mäki, the Avery Review

Emanuel Admassu, Columbia GSAPP

Émélie Desrochers-Turgeon, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada 

Emine Seda KAYIM, University of Kentucky, School of Architecture

Emma Shaw Crane, Columbia University

Erik Schmahl, Landscape Architecture

Esra Akbalık, PhD

Esra Akcan, Cornell University

Esther Choi, Cooper Union 

Ethel Baraona Pohl, co-founder of dpr-barcelona

Eva Schreiner, Columbia University

Fadly Isaacs, University of Cape Town

Faranak Miraftab, University of Illinois

Farhan Karim, Arizona State University

Farzin Lotfi-Jam, Cornell University

Fatema Maswood, Rhode Island School of Design

Gabriela Méndez Cota, IBERO CdMx

Glaire Anderson, University of Edinburgh

Gonzalo Munoz-Vera, Carleton University

Haider Naji Atyiah. University of Karbala. Iraq

Hannah le Roux, University of the Witwatersrand 

Heba Mostafa, University of Toronto

Herlily, Universitas Indonesia

Hiba Bou Akar, Columbia University

Hilde Heynen, University of Leuven

Hollyamber Kennedy, Northwestern University 

Hồng-Ân Trương, UNC Chapel Hill, Dept of Art & Art History

Huda Tayob, University of Manchester

Iftikhar Dadi, Cornell University

Ikem Stanley Okoye, University of Delaware

Iman Fayyad, Syracuse University

Inge Roecker UBC

Ipek Akpinar, Izmir Institute of Technology

Ipek Türeli, McGill University

Irena Lehkoživová, VI PER Gallery, Prague / Faculty of Architecture CTU, Prague

Irene E. Brisson, Louisiana State University 

Isabelle Kirkham-Lewitt, Columbia Books on Architecture and the City, Avery Review 

Ivonne Santoyo-Orozco, Bard College

Jack Halberstam

James Graham, California College of the Arts

Jenan Ghazal, Carleton University 

Jennifer Mack, KTH

Jennifer Nelson, University of Delaware / Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study

Jia Yi Gu

Jiat-Hwee Chang, National University of Singapore

Jill H. Casid, University of Wisconsin-Madison 

jina valentine, artist, professor

Jingying Lin, Barnard College

Joanna Joseph, Columbia Books on Architecture and the City / The Avery Review 

Jonathan Beller, Pratt Institute 

Jonathan Sterne, McGill University

Jordan H. Carver, Yale School of Architecture

Juliana Maxim

Kabage Karanja,  Columbia University 

Kareem Rabie, UIC

Kate Yeh Chiu, Materials & Applications, University of Southern California

Katherine Blouin, University of Toronto 

Keller Easterling, Yale University 

Kelly Shannon, Urbanism, KU Leuven 

Ken E Salo

Ken Ehrlich, Artist and Scholar

Kian Goh, Urban Planning, UCLA

Kimberli Meyer, Independent Curator

Kush Patel, Pedagogy of the Digitally Oppressed Collective

Laleh Khalili, University of Exeter

Laura Fair, Columbia University

Léopold Lambert, The Funambulist

Leslie Van Duzer, University of British Columbia

Lilly Irani, UC San Diego

Lisa Landrum

Liza Griffin

Luce Beeckmans, Department of Architecture, KU Leuven University

Luisa Sotomayor, York University 

Lynda Zein, AVU Prague 

Lynne Horiuchi

Maarten Loopmans, KU Leuven

Mabel O. Wilson, Columbia University

Mahmoud Keshavarz, Uppsala University

Maite Borjabad, independent curator; ETSAM

Maja Babic, University of Groningen

Manijeh Moradian, Barnard College, Columbia University 

María Novas, Leiden University

Marina Tabassum 

Marisa Solomon, Barnard College

Mark Olweny, Uganda Martyrs University

Matthew Ashton, RMIT University Melbourne 

Menna Agha, Carleton University 

Merve Bedir

Michael Faciejew, School of Architecture, Dalhousie University

Michele Lancione, Polytechnic of Turin 

Mireille Roddier, University of Michigan

Miriam Ticktin, CUNY Graduate Center (Anthropology)

Muhammad Naufal Fadhil, ISBI Aceh

Nadia Abu El-Haj, Barnard College-Columbia University

Nandini Bagchee, CCNY, CUNY

Nasser Rabbat, MIT

Navdeep Mathur, IIM 

Neferti Tadiar, Barnard College, Columbia University 

NEŞE GURALLAR, TED University 

Nick Beech, University of Birmingham

Nick Estes, University of Minnesota

Nida Rehman, Carnegie Mellon University

Nimanthi Rajasingham, English and Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies 

Noémie Despland-Lichtert

Nora Akawi, The Cooper Union

Norma Rantisi, Professor, Concordia University

Nurhan Abujidi, Research Center Smart Urban Redesign, the Netherlands

Olga Touloumi, Bard College

Omar Berrada, independent scholar

Omar Jabary Salamanca, Université Libre de Bruxelles

Ozayr Saloojee, Carleton University

Patricia Morton, University of Calfornia, Riverside

Paulo Tavares, University of Brasilia

Pelin Tan, PhD, Center for Arts, Design and Social Research

Pernille Maria Bärnheim, Royal Danish Academy

Peter Christensen, Department of Art and Art History, University of Rochester

Peter Zuroweste, Architecture, College of Design, Iowa State University

Rabab Abdulhadi, Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas Studies, San Francisco State University

Rachel Lee, TU Delft

Radha D’Souza,  University of Westminster

Rafico Ruiz

Ralph Ghoche, Barnard College

Ramzy Kahhat, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú 

Rana Abughannam, University of British Columbia

Ranjani Srinivasan, Urban Planning, Columbia University 

Ratu Arum Kusumawardhani, Universitas Indraprasta PGRI, Indonesia

Richard Fadok, University of Rochester

Rohan Shivkumar

Romola Sanyal, London School of Economics 

Ross Exo Adams, Bard Architecture

Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, California State University

Rupali Gupte,  School of Environment and Architecture 

Ruth Lang, RCA/LSA

Ruth Sacks. University of Johannesburg

Saba Sami Al-Ali, Al Nahrain University- Iraq

Samia Henni, Cornell University 

Sara Stevens, School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, University of British Columbia

Sarah Hearne, CU Denver

Sarover Zaidi 

Sben Korsh, University of Michigan 

Scott Sorli, Sessional Instructor, Architecture

Sharif Kahatt, Arquitectura PUCP

Shumi Bose, UAL & RCA

Shundana Yusaf, University of Utah

Sonal Mithal, CEPT University 

Sonali Dhanpal, Princeton University

Stefan Kipfer, York University

Stephen Gasteyer, Michigan State University

Stephen Sheehi, William and Mary

Stephennie Mulder, The University of Texas at Austin 

Sue Ruddick, University of Toronto

Suha Hasan

Sumayya Kassamali, University of Toronto

Suzanne Mathew, Landscape Architecture, Rhode Island School of Design

T. Gül Köksal

Tania Gutiérrez-Monroy, University of British Columbia

Tanishka Kachru, NID Ahmedabad

Tansel Korkmaz, İstanbul Kent University

Tha’er Qub’a, German Jordanian University

Thandi Loewenson, Royal College of Art

Thierry Grandin Architect

Thireshen Govender, UrbanWorks

Tiago Torres-Campos, RISD

Tomà Berlanda, Politecnico di Torino

Tosin Oshinowo 

V. Mitch McEwen, Princeton School of Architecture

Valeria Tellez, UQAM

Will Glover, University of Michigan

Zakaria Rhani, Mohammed V University, Rabat

Zannah Matson, University of Colorado Boulder

Zeynep Kezer, Newcastle University 

Zirwat Chowdhury, UCLA

Zoona Aamir

As of December 10, 2023