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A Broken Language, a Crippled Debate, and the Role of Art in Democracy

The Palestinian-Israeli conflict directly affects mainstream Americans, because their government's Middle East policies frequently align them with moral positions that clash with cherished democratic principles. Yet many Americans who would be interested in exploring the Palestinian perspective or in expressing opposition to Zionism refrain from doing so because of the fear of being unfairly tarred with the label anti-Semitic. This is a valid concern, because in the United States today anti-Semitism is treated as a public policy issue even though it actually is a public health issue: persons alleged to be anti-Semitic are condemned without trial and isolated rather than properly diagnosed, treated, and healed.

An antidote to anti-Semitism is transparent, democratic discussion about its origins, evolutions, and current forms. Art is a resource that is often overlooked in the campaign to combat domestic anti-Semitism.

A democratic discussion, nurtured by the arts, may enable Americans to clarify their values, find the language to speak to their government about the Middle East, and muster the will to hold it accountable.

Monograph Sections:
The Difficulty of Talking about Palestine and Israel
Anti-Semitism: A Word with an Ugly History
Zionism and Anti-Zionism
Anti-Semitism and Anti-Zionism As Synonyms
Anti-Semitism and Anti-Zionism as Antonyms
Anti-Semitism and Zionism as Synonyms
Palestinian Nationalism and Nationhood
Tensions Created by Terms
An Analogy for the Contemporary American Debate
Art in the Service of Public Diplomacy and Civic Education
An Invitation to A New Democratic Discussion
Permission to Speak
New Definitions to Advance Discussion
Guidelines for the Discussion
Launching the Discussion


Gallery 1:
US Solidarity with Palestine

Gallery 2:
Israeli Progressives

Gallery 3:
Zionist Advocacy

Gallery 4:
International Solidarity with Palestine

Gallery 5:
Palestinian Artists/

Gallery 6:
Arab Solidarity with Palestine

Gallery 7:
Curator's Gallery

About this Exhibiton
Definitions of Anti-Semitism
Definitions of Zionism


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