Examining and responding to conflict between African American and Jewish American students on a college campus

Authors

  • Warren J. Blumenfeld,

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    • Warren J. Blumenfeld is a doctoral candidate in the Social Justice Educational Program at the University of Massachusetts–Amherst and executive editor of the International Journal of Sexuality and Gender Studies.

  • Lisa D. Robinson

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    • Lisa D. Robinson is a doctoral candidate in the Social Justice Education Program and a graduate student in the Advanced Feminist Studies Program in the Women's Studies Department at the University of Massachusetts–Amherst, and coeditor of the American Educational Research Association's National Graduate Newsletter.


Abstract

In the spring of 1995, Warren J. Blumenfeld and Lisa D. Robinson, doctoral candidates in the Social Justice Education Program at the University of Massachusetts–Amherst, interviewed several undergraduate students of African and Jewish heritage at the university to accumulate information focusing on the question, “What is the relationship on campus between African American and Jewish American students?” The results from this sample showed that there were indeed tension, conflict, and misunderstanding on campus between the two groups, which are particularly heightened when outside speakers are brought to campus. As a result of this initial research project, they designed and facilitated a general education, two–credit, full-weekend course at an off–campus conference site, bringing together undergraduate students of African and Jewish heritage. The instructors share the results of their survey and the design, facilitation, and evaluation of their course, EDUC 396J: African American and Jewish American Students Dialogue, within the historical background of race relations at the university.

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