Zionism and Antisemitism – International Conference

 

Event Date: 24-26 May 2017
Clore Lecture Theatre
Clore Management Centre
Birkbeck University of London
Malet Street
London WC1E 7HX

The Pears Institute for the Study of Antisemitism presents:

ZIONISM AND ANTISEMITISM

International Conference

This three day international conference brings together more than 35 scholars from institutions in eight countries, from different disciplines and with diverse perspectives, to examine the interaction between Zionism and antisemitism as it has developed from the nineteenth century through to the present day. Themes to be explored include: Christianity, Jews and Zionism; Zionism and National Socialism; memories of the Holocaust and the Nakba; racisms; and anti-Zionism and antisemitism.

Political Zionism and antisemitism have been connected ever since the late nineteenth century. From the 1870s, self-proclaimed antisemites regarded Jews as an unassimilable element within their nations and states. Many Zionists concluded that the persistence of antisemitism required a Jewish state or national home in Palestine. ‘We are one people – our enemies have made us one in our despite….Distress binds us together,’ wrote Theodor Herzl in The Jewish State, in 1896.

This is a timely moment for our conference. November 2017 brings the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration which enabled the Zionist movement to build a national home in Palestine and set it on the road to statehood, achieved three decades later. This year also marks the 50th anniversary of the Six Day War. The war and its aftermath have added further dimensions to the relationship between Zionism and antisemitism.

PROGRAMME
Wednesday 24 May
Welcome David Feldman (Birkbeck, University of London)

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Panel 1: Zionists, Semitism and Antisemitism
Chair: Stephen Frosh (Birkbeck, University of London)

Adam Sutcliffe (King’s College London) – ‘The organ of unifying and sanctifying love’: Jews and non-Jews in the Zionist vision of Moses Hess

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Moshe Behar (University of Manchester) – Ottoman Jewish views on nominal semitism

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Amir Goldstein (Tel-Hai College, Israel) – Jabotinsky’s interpretation of antisemitism between the two world wars

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Panel 2: Christianity, Jews and Zionism
Chair: David Feldman (Birkbeck, University of London)

James Renton (European University Institute) – Christian Europe’s figure of the fanatic and the Zionist world conspiracy: an ontological process

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Yaakov Ariel (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) – Contemporary protestantism and Zionism: philosemitism and antisemitism

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Panel 3: Zionism and Politics c.1920-70
Chair: Frank Trentmann (Birkbeck, University of London)

Yaakov Ariel (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill) – Between Liberalism and Slavophobia: anti-Zionism and antisemitism in interwar Greece

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Robert B. Isaacson (George Washington University) – The Zionist as ‘survivor’: Holocaust memory and the origins of the French-Israeli alliance

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Nathan Kurz (Birkbeck, University of London) – International Human Rights, Antisemitism and the Origins of ‘Zionism is Racism’, 1959-1965

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Panel 4: Socialism and Zionism
Chair: Brendan McGeever (Birkbeck, University of London)

Andrew Sloin (Baruch College, City University of New York) – Anti-Zionism, anti-fascism, and the Great Terror

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Alan Johnson (Editor of Fathom journal) – ‘A Global Revision’? Late Trotsky on antisemitism and the necessity of a territorial solution to ‘the Jewish question’

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Keynote lecture: Derek Penslar (Harvard University) – Antisemitism and Zionism: ideologies or emotions?

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Thursday 25 May
Panel 5: The New Antisemitism
Chair: Anthony Bale (Birkbeck, University of London)

Gerald Steinberg (Bar Ilan University) and Anne Herzberg (NGO Monitor) – International human rights discourse and the new antisemitism

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Eric Alterman (City University of New York) – Liberal responses to antisemitic implications in the academic BDS movement, right and left

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Panel 6: Anti-Israel Attitudes and Opinion Today
Chair: Philip Spencer (Kingston University and Birkbeck, University of London)

Uzi Rebhun (The Hebrew University of Jerusalem) – Antisemitism and anti-Israeli sentiments in contemporary Europe

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Tony Klug (Oxford Research Group) – The Israeli occupation and the rise of antisemitism – is there a connection?

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Panel 7: Racisms
Chair: Ben Gidley (Birkbeck, University of London)

Samuel Ghiles-Meilhac (SciencesPo, Paris and University Paris 8) – ‘Anti-Zionism is our haven’ Les Indigènes de la République, Jews and Israel

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Elliot Ratzman (Swarthmore College) – A candid confrontation? anti-Zionism and antisemitism after Ferguson

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David Hirsh (Goldsmiths, University of London) – The mainstreaming of xenophobia, racism and antisemitism in contemporary populist movements

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Panel 8: Israel and Antisemitism in Austria and Germany
Chair: Stefanie Schüler-Springorum (Technische Universität Berlin)

Daniel Marwecki (School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London) – German-Israeli state relations in the postwar era: the role(s) of antisemitism

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Helga Embacher (University of Salzburg) – Suspicious Zionism: The right-wing populist Austrian Freedom Party (FPÖ) and its instrumentalization of Zionism, Jews and antisemitism as a means to attain political power

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Esra Ozyurek (London School of Economics and Political Science) – Making Nazis out of Arabs/Muslims: a tertiary antisemitism?

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Friday 26 May
Panel 9: After the Holocaust
Chair: Diana Popescu (Birkbeck, University of London)

Liat Steir-Livny (Sapir Academic College and The Open University, Israel) – Holocaust memory in Israeli cinema: from Zionism to post-Zionism

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Roger Frie (Simon Fraser University, University of British Columbia, Vancouver) – The intersection of philosemitism and antisemitism: German responses to the Nazi past and the Holocaust

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Panel 10: Zionism, Racism and Antisemitism After the 1970s
Chair: Anne Summers (Birkbeck, University of London)

Miriam E. David (University College London Institute of Education) and Gail Chester (writer and independent scholar) – Antisemitism, Zionism and Feminism

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Dave Rich (Community Security Trust) – Anti-Zionism and the ‘new antisemitism’: theory and practice

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Milton Shain (University of Cape Town) – Anti-Zionism and antisemitism: reflections from South Africa

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Panel 11: Controversies and Concepts
Chair: Bryan Cheyette (University of Reading)

Ephraim Nimni (Queen’s University, Belfast) – The ethnification of political Zionism and modern antisemitism

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Peter Ullrich (Technische Universität Berlin) – Antisemitism as a problem and a symbol

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Keith Kahn-Harris (Leo Baeck College and Birkbeck, University of London) – The contemporary controversy over left-wing antisemitism and the problem of power

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Concluding Remarks
David Feldman (Birkbeck, University of London)

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Conference closes

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