Alan Dershowitz, one of the country’s most prominent lawyers and a passionate advocate for Israel, is retiring from Harvard Law School at the age of 75.
Known for taking on high-profile and often unpopular causes and clients, Dershowitz taught at Harvard Law for half a century. His retirement becomes official at the end of the week. “My retirement consists of reducing my schedule down to only about 10 things at any given time,” he said at a conference in Israel last week.
Dershowitz, a Brooklyn native who has written and spoken often on his Orthodox Jewish upbringing and education, has used his prominence to defend Israel over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Among his harshest critics is Noam Chomsky, the renowned Massachusetts Institute of Technology linguist with whom he has had a long-running public feud over Israel.
In 2006, Dershowitz publicly challenged former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, for the views he expressed in his book “Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid,” calling the book biased.
While “proud to be Jewish and engaged with Israel’s future,” Dershowitz also assisted Palestinian students when they sought inclusion of the Palestinian flag in a campus display, Harvard Law School dean Martha Minow told JTA.