Emerson College’s only independent, student-run newspaper since 1947

The Berkeley Beacon

Emerson College’s only independent, student-run newspaper since 1947

The Berkeley Beacon

Emerson College’s only independent, student-run newspaper since 1947

The Berkeley Beacon

College to host webinar on Israel-Palestine conflict on March 25

The Berkeley Beacon Archives
Emerson’s downtown Boston campus.

The college will be sponsoring an educational webinar for the Emerson community on March 25 that will address the ongoing Israel-Palestine conflict, according to a community-wide email sent by college officials.

The online-only event, “Reclaiming Nuance: Polarization & Framing Post Oct. 7 – A Conversational Approach,” requires no registration and will occur at 11:30 a.m. ET.

The college is hosting the webinar to create space for difficult conversations and community engagement, the email said. 

“We acknowledge that many community members have needed time to process, cope, and grieve,” the email said. “Our community may now be ready to create meaningful, earnest conversations that build bridges among us and not foment divisiveness.”

The email noted that the webinar will not discuss the history of the conflict. Instead, it will be about what makes it challenging to productively discuss this issue, including “directly addressing common points of tension.” 

In particular, the event aims to offer a greater understanding of framing and polarization and how they affect communities, especially concerning Israel and Palestine. It also hopes to “foster empathy and insight” into the ways the aftermath of Oct. 7 has impacted members of the Emerson community.

Only the presenter’s cameras will be on during the webinar and attendees will be in listen-only mode. Participants can submit questions ahead of the event and during the event via the Zoom webinar tool. A moderator will select and prioritize them in real time for the panelists.

The speakers include Dr. Gail Sahar, the Jane Oxford Keiter professor of psychology at Wheaton College, and Jonathan Feingold, J.D., an associate professor at Boston University Law School. 

According to the email, Sahar earned her doctoral degree at the University of California, Los Angeles, and has been teaching social and political psychology while researching attitudes toward controversial social issues for over 25 years. Her scholarship is focused on people’s perceptions of the causes of social problems and how they relate to ideology and attitudes. 

Feingold’s work explores the relationship between race, law, and the mind sciences. Much of his recent research has interrogated how and why various American legal regimes, including the equal protection doctrine, function to reinforce and reproduce racial hierarchy. He has his Juris Doctorate from UCLA. 

In April, the college plans to hold additional small group discussions for Emersonians to engage thoughtfully with each other on the conflict, which “involves divergent perceptions, experiences, and histories.”

“We look forward to learning and modeling how to have complex conversations about this critical topic in our world,” the email said.

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About the Contributor
Hannah Nguyen
Hannah Nguyen, Managing Editor
Hannah Nguyen (she/her) is a junior journalism major from North Wales, Pennsylvania. Her work has appeared in publications like The Boston Globe, North Penn Now and AsAmNews. Outside of writing, she enjoys thrifting and painting her nails. (see: https://linktr.ee/hannahcnguyen)

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