As part of Brooklyn College’s ongoing We Stand Against Hate (WSAH) lecture series, noted scholars David N. Myers and Hussein Ibish will hold a dialogue on Mar. 28, entitled “Shared Paths, Divergent Courses: Zionism & Palestinian Nationalism.” Myers and Ibish frequently partner in conversation to provide historical knowledge, nuance, empathy, and the critical distance necessary to understand the history of Israel and Palestine.

“We really wanted to teach the history of Palestine and Zionism in a very different way than it’s normally taught,” says Myers, a professor of history at UCLA who has written extensively about modern Jewish intellectual and cultural history. “We thought it was both historically necessary, and really almost a moral act, to combine the history of Zionism and Palestinian nationalism, based on the premise that one can’t really understand the history of one without the other.”

“Whenever I speak with Professor Myers on this subject,” says Ibish, a senior resident scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, D.C., “[I say] we are doing something unusual, and in an unprecedented way. Mutually reinforcing dialogue rather than a debate or argument—that’s the unusual part. We begin with the premise that we have more in common, especially in terms of needed outcomes, and that we can have more than just a respectful conversation, but a conversation that helps us to understand ourselves better. We come together to interrogate the narrative. We pivot back on our own narratives and look at where they are reinforced and/or undermined by an honest, frank, historical account, and then start looking at how these narratives developed, where they intersect, and what we can learn from that.”

“Shared Paths, Divergent Courses: Zionism & Palestinian Nationalism” will be held on Tuesday, Mar. 28 in the Woody Tanger Auditorium in the Brooklyn College Library at 3:40 p.m. A reception in the library’s Christoph M. Kimmich Reading Room will follow.

The We Stand Against Hate: Enhancing Understanding and Compassion initiative at Brooklyn College was launched in spring 2017 with a series of lectures, panel discussions, workshops, concerts, art exhibitions, and other special events across campus. The series aims to elevate the discourse around challenging political issues and foster inclusiveness on campus.

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