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New Dialogue on Antisemitism at American University

Updated: Feb 25, 2019

Announcement by Jessica Horst

American University’s Center for Diversity and Inclusion introduced an Intergroup Dialogue on antisemitism for the 2019 spring semester. Aiming to equip students with the ability to recognize and address antisemitism, the Intergroup Dialogue will explore the history of antisemitism and its terminology, how antisemitism operates in the United States, and how it often presents itself on college campuses. The group will also examine the differences between antisemitism and anti-Zionist sentiment, as well as, how the two views overlap.

“Antisemitism is a growing phenomenon across the United States and Europe and college campuses are particularly vulnerable. But, strangely, there aren’t a lot of resources to teach this complex form of oppression at an age-appropriate level for college students. This is an attempt to bridge that gap,” said student Steph Black in a post about the antisemitism curriculum.

The Center for Diversity and Inclusion’s website summarizes what to expect during these sessions with three questions: Regardless of your identity, what are your experiences with antisemitism? What is antisemitism and how does it function on-campus and beyond? What is the connection between antisemitism and other forms of oppression?

Intergroup Dialogues are seven-week programs that gather American University students and staff of multiple backgrounds for an opportunity to engage on a range of identity topics and societal issues. The goals are for participants to gain the tools for navigating difference and the skills to facilitate identity-based conversations on topics such as race, ethnicity, gender, class, sexuality, and faith.

Each semester, the Center for Diversity and Inclusion offer new topics based on student interests, current events, and campus needs. The four topics selected for the 2019 semester are: Cultural Appropriation, Asian Pacific Islander Issues, Immigration and Nationality, and Antisemitism. To learn more, visit the Center for Diversity and Inclusion's website.

Scheduled to begin on February 18, the Intergroup Dialogue on antisemitism will meet on Wednesdays from 6:00 to 8:00 PM. Registration for Spring 2019 Intergroup Dialogue sessions end on Sunday, February 10.

To learn more about the series, read about the antisemitism curriculum on Steph Black’s personal blog, Reflections of a Wild Feminist.

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