This article surveys recent developments in the BDS movement and its call for a cultural and academic boycott of Israel. It analyzes the policy of the cultural boycott in comparison with other forms of boycott as well its effectiveness in different circumstances. The most effective strategy is not necessarily to enforce a boycott but to create a vibrant public discussion about Israeli policies against the Palestinians. The legislative power of the Israeli position is compared with the much weaker force of international pressure that the Palestinian population can bring to bear. Yet, even in this unequal exchange, the boycott movement and its cultural wing are achieving traction. The essay suggests the possibility of a shift in Israeli society against the political and intellectual consequences of occupation.

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