Since its founding, the Department of Medieval Studies, as a centre of study, has bridged the cultures of Eastern, Central, and Western Europe. As one can see from its faculty and its course offerings, the Department trains scholars not only in the study of Medieval Latin Christianity but also of Byzantine and Eastern Christianity, as well as in the study of the origins of those cultures in the diverse world of Late Antiquity. As a consequence, graduates of its programs have continued in further research or teaching positions in universities throughout Eastern, Central, and Western Europe. The Department has gained a reputation as a centre of the highest academic standards, something to which we can attest directly in our contact with graduates from the Department working in our own fields of research. This achievement is a credit to the quality and commitment of the scholarly community in Hungary devoted to the study of ancient and medieval Christianity, of which the Department of Medieval Studies at Central European University is a part.
The legislation which has recently been enacted is, thus, not only an affront to the principles of unfettered academic scholarship and exchange. It is also undermines, tragically and needlessly, a significant Hungarian contribution to the study of the cultural legacy of ancient Christianity throughout Europe and, indeed, throughout the world. Therefore, on behalf of the Association and in support of Central European University we would urge the Hungarian government to revoke the legislative provisions which apply only to Central European University and are designed to prevent it from operating freely within Hungary.