Angela Davis, the activist and scholar, said this week that she was “stunned” after a civil rights group in her native Birmingham, Ala., reversed its decision to honor her with an award amid protests over her support for a boycott of Israel.

Angela Davis, Black Activist, African American Activist, African American History, Black History, KOLUMN Magazine, KOLUMN, Willoughby Avenue

Professor Davis, once a global hero of the left who has since earned renown for her scholarship, had been selected for the human rights award months ago by the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, but the group’s board rescinded the honor on Friday.

In announcing the move, the institute did not offer an explanation, saying only that “she unfortunately does not meet all of the criteria on which the award is based.” But Professor Davis said in a statement on Facebook on Monday that she had learned it was because of her “long-term support of justice for Palestine.” The revocation of the award, she added, was “not primarily an attack against me but rather against the very spirit of the indivisibility of justice.”

In a statement expressing dismay at the controversy, Mayor Randall Woodfin of Birmingham said the decision had come amid “protests from our local Jewish community and some of its allies.”


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