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Conference seeks to harness wisdom on the roots of hate


"The Challenges of Hate in the 21st Century" is the theme for the 7th Annual International Conference on Hate Studies on Thursday to Saturday, April 20 to 22, at Spokane Community College Lair Student Center and virtually.

Gonzaga University's Center for the Study of Hate and the Community Colleges of Spokane are co-sponsors of this  event gathering speakers from around the world to address manifestations of hate.

The Friday evening banquet speaker is Charlene Teters, interim dean of the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, N.M., and member of the Spokane Nation. She is an artist, writer, educator and activist who gained national recognition as a graduate student at the University of Illinois-Champaign, speaking out against depictions of American Indian caricatures in sport team mascots. She was focus of an award-winning documentary, "In Whose Honor?" by Jay Rosenstein.

Other speakers include:

Nimmi Gowrinathan, founder of the Politics of Sexual Violence Initiative, is director of Beyond Identity: A Gendered Platform for Scholar-Activists at the City College of New York.

• Rae Jereza is a professor and researcher at the Polarization and Extremism Research Lab at American University in D.C.

Arun Kundnani writes on racial capitalism, Islamophobia, surveillance, political violence and Black radical movements.

• David Neiwert is an investigative journalist with Daily Kos and author of The Age of Insurrection: The Radical Right's Ongoing War on Democracy.

• Nicole Nguyen is associate professor of criminology, law, justice and educational policies at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and author of A Curriculum of Fear: Homeland Security in U.S. Public Schools.

• Zoé Samudzi, who teaches photography at Rhode Island School of Design, is a researcher at the Center for the Study of Race, Gender and Class at the University of Johannesburg.

• Arjun Sethi edits "American Hate: Survivors Speak Out," and teaches law at Georgetown and Vanderbilt.

The interdisciplinary forum offers presentations on hate, social problems and ways to create socially just and inclusive communities. Ideas and plans that emerge from the event will help educators, researchers and advocates counter hatred to enhance commitments to peace, human rights and justice.

"'We are stronger together' is more than a saying when it comes to countering hatred and creating peace, human rights and justice," said Kristine Hoover, professor of organizational leadership and past director of Gonzaga's Center for the Study of Hate.

While the 2021 conference was only virtual, this year's event brings students, academics and organizations together in person and virtually.

"Hatred is a danger to everyone. So fighting it is a job for everyone," said António Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General in 2021. To address growing intolerance and hate-motivated violence, he urges education on root causes.

The conference seeks to harness collective wisdom. Presenters represent 51 institutions of higher education, 15 organizations, 12 countries and 17 states.

For information, visit

Copyright@ The Fig Tree, April 2023