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Hate Studies event seeks to engage communities

Speakers and workshops for the fourth interdisciplinary International Conference on Hate Studies from Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 19 to 21, in Hemmingson Center at Gonzaga University will discuss, “Engaging with Communities for Justice.”

Kristine Hoover, director of the Institute for Hate Studies at Gonzaga for the past year, said several fall events will look at how university resources can support community partners as they address hate and healing locally and globally.

She spoke of the need to recognize the different “language” of academics and community partners.

The Compassion Games “Imagine Spokane Forum” on Saturday, Sept. 16, and the United Nations’ International Day of Peace Thursday, Sept. 21, will set the stage.

The Gonzaga Center for Public Humanities is sponsoring a lecture by scholar, author and activist Angela Davis on Wednesday, Oct. 25.

Gonzaga faculty and students will give presentations in October and November leading into International Education Week  Nov. 13 to 17. 

On Nov. 20 to 21, the GU Southern Poverty Law Center Student Chapter, the Institute for Hate Studies and the Spokane community are sponsoring, “Pledge to Take a Stand” against hate, injustice and intolerance.

The International Conference opens at 6 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 19, with the documentary, “13th,” at the Hemmingson Auditorium.  The film explores the intersection of race, justice and mass incarceration in the United States related to the 13th Amendment that prohibits slavery.

The conference seeks to analyze and combat hatred in its various manifestations to build community committed to peace, human rights and justice.

Co-sponsors with the Institute for Hate Studies are the Spokane County Human Rights Task Force and the Kootenai County Task Force on Human Relations.

From 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., Friday, Oct. 20, is Community Partner Day, focusing on human rights needs of community partners.

Keynote speakers are Jennifer Schweppe of Limerick, Ireland, co-director of the International Network on Hate Studies, and Joe Leven, co-founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center in 1971.

At an evening banquet, Idaho State Senator Cherie Buckner-Webb of Boise will speak on “With Justice for All.”

Saturday closes with a keynote address at 7 p.m. in the Hemmingson Center by Rabbi Francine Roston of the Glacier Jewish Community B-nai Shalom of Flathead, Mont., speaking on “Responding to Hate and Cyber-Terrorism: Lessons from Whitefish, Mont.” That community responded to harassment and threats from a neo-Nazi website with a campaign of “Love Lives Here” posters and a “Love Not Hate” rally. 

There will be workshops Friday and Saturday. 

Kristine, who has been on the GU faculty for eight years, said a university is a place for free speech, dialogue, listening and learning from and with one another: “As a Jesuit university in our geographic location, Gonzaga has a commitment to equality and justice for all, valuing humanity and difficult conversations.”

For information, call 313-3662 or email

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