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On Thursday, October 29th at 7:30 pm the Tam Institute for Jewish Studies at Emory will feature Eric K. Ward, Executive Director of the Western States Center, as the speaker for this year’s Rothschild Lecture. With roots in community organizing and civil rights work, Mr. Ward has been a leading voice in national discussions on how to combat hate violence and preserve democratic institutions, governance, and inclusive societies.

Titled “Skin in the Game: American Jews, Whiteness, and the Contemporary Movement for Racial Justice,” the event will be conducted virtually over Zoom. Rather than a traditional lecture, it will be organized as a conversation, in which the Tam Institute’s director, Eric L. Goldstein, will interview and engage with Mr. Ward about the historical contexts, current challenges, and future possibilities that together reflect Jews’ complex and often contradictory place in America’s racial terrain. Goldstein is the author of the 2006 book, The Price of Whiteness: Jews, Race, and American Society.

Ward and Goldstein will also discuss the connections between antisemitism and white nationalist ideology in the United States. More broadly, the program seeks to explore where American Jews stand in relation to the nation’s reckoning with the issues of race, white privilege, and inequality, and what stake they have in this process.

The Rothschild Memorial Lecture was established in 2007 to honor the late Rabbi Jacob M. Rothschild (1911-1973), the spiritual leader of Atlanta's Hebrew Benevolent Congregation (“The Temple”), and a voice for social change in the city and throughout the South. Each year a guest scholar memorializes Rothschild with a lecture on a topic relevant to his life and work, such as Jewish ethics, Jewish social movements, modern Judaism, or southern Jewish history.

The Tam Institute for Jewish Studies at Emory University is one of the leading research and teaching institutions for Jewish Studies in the South. Bringing together scholars and students from a number of different departments and programs, TIJS awards an undergraduate major and minor and provides support for doctoral-level work. Each year, the Institute sponsors a stimulating series of public events, most notably the Tenenbaum Family Lecture in Judaic Studies and the Rabbi Jacob M. Rothschild Memorial Lecture, bringing distinguished visiting scholars to campus to share knowledge with faculty, students and the Atlanta community.

Co-Sponsored by the Emory University: Department of Religion, Center for Ethics, Office of Spiritual & Religious Life, Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Hightower Fund, Fox Center for Humanistic Inquiry

Register for the Oct. 29 Rothschild Lecture webinar here:

Published 9/24/2020