Bâli, director of the UCLA Center for Near Eastern Studies, was awarded the 2017 Middle East Studies Association Presidential Award on November 19, 2017.
UCLA International Institute, November 22, 2017 — Aslı Ü. Bâli — director of the UCLA Center for Near Eastern Studies, faculty director of the Promise Institute for Human Rights at the UCLA School of Law and UCLA professor of human rights and international law — was recently awarded the 2017 Middle East Studies Association (MESA) Presidential Award at the organization’s annual conference in Washington, DC.
Bâli received the award for her work in connection to MESA’s role as a plaintiff in litigation challenging the travel ban of the current presidential administration and for her work protecting academic freedom through the association.
“Working together with my colleagues at MESA to address threats to our field — including travel bans that limit our ability to engage collaboratively with students and scholars from the Middle East, and restrictions on academic freedom that impact scholarship about the Middle East — has been a great honor and privilege,” said Bâli.
Prior to the award ceremony, Professor Bâli participated in a special plenary panel at the MESA conference entitled, “MESA, the ACLU and the Muslim Ban,” with Beth Baron of City College and Graduate Center of CUNY and Cody Wofsy of the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project. The three panelists discussed the third, indefinite Muslim ban imposed by presidential proclamation this September, its impact on higher education and the federal lawsuit brought by the ACLU, and joined by MESA and other organizations, that challenges the ban.