From the Hartman InstitutePromoted podcast

The Battle for Liberal Values on Campus

How do ‘safety,’ discomfort, and liberalism interact on American college campuses?

Demonstrators gather with signs near the Butler Library on the Columbia University campus in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of New York City on October 8, 2023. (AP Photo/Ted Shaffrey)
Demonstrators gather with signs near the Butler Library on the Columbia University campus in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of New York City on October 8, 2023. (AP Photo/Ted Shaffrey)

Across the United States, students are rallying and advocating for their perspectives about the ongoing Israel-Hamas War. Campus conversations and environments are becoming increasingly hostile with many Jewish students reporting feeling unsafe.

In this week’s episode, Yehuda Kurtzer is joined by Mijal Bitton, research fellow at the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America and Rosh Kehilla (communal leader) and co-founder of the Downtown Minyan in New York City to probe the term ‘safety’ and how it interacts with the discomfort that a diverse, liberal education should engender. They ask: when is discomfort productive, when is it unproductive, and when does it cross the line to dangerous? They consider the purpose of universities as well as if and how Jews can continue to exist within, and even improve, systems that don’t see us.

Identity/Crisis is a weekly podcast from the Shalom Hartman Institute about news and ideas.

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