Why is This Book Different From All Other Books on Antisemitism?

While previous works have outlined the problem, our book is focused on solutions. It will be a hands-on guide, focusing on the practical.
December 8, 2023
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When I first proposed my book, “From Outrage to Action: A Practical Guide to Fighting Antisemitism”(https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/fightingantisemitism/a-practical-guide-to-fighting-antisemitism), I encountered skepticism from a potential publisher. They questioned whether anything new could be said on the subject or if the fight against antisemitism was solely a matter for the Israeli Defense Forces and their battle against Hamas.

After going through most of the stages of grief since October 7, I thought about what I could do to help. In the aftermath of this tragedy, the sense of helplessness can be overwhelming. My book will argue that there is plenty that can be done in our own virtual and physical communities. We don’t have to passively watch horrible events unfold; everyone can play a part in combating antisemitism. This book is about showing how and why.

I chose to do this via Kickstarter and self-publish for a couple of reasons. First, I don’t trust any publishers to handle this the way I’d like or to recognize the urgency. Typically, Kickstarter is known for funding comic books and games, but I’m testing its ability to support a comprehensive project against antisemitism. It’s a risk because there is no book like this on Kickstarter, and I’ve never crowdfunded anything in my life. It appears to be working so far. Within the first 24 hours, the campaign was already 30 percent funded.

When a skeptical Jewish blogger recently asked me what sets this apart from other books on antisemitism, my answer was clear: This book is “The Next Generation.” While previous works have outlined the problem, our book is focused on solutions. It will be a hands-on guide, focusing on the practical. It’s one thing to recognize the problem, but let’s look at what can physically be done. What do the experts recommend? What has worked for other people?

The book will cover a wide range of topics, including:

Online Antisemitism: Online spaces are rife with antisemitism, often disguised as criticism of Israel. My book aims to break down the definition of antisemitism and address the straw man argument that Jews claim antisemitism whenever Israel is criticized. I’ll explore best practices for dealing with antisemitic trolls on social media, whether to engage, report, or block them, and provide strategies for responding to accusations of “genocide,” “apartheid,” and “settler-colonialism.”

Campus Antisemitism: On college campuses, Jewish students and faculty often face isolation and discrimination. My book will delve into the combination of legal, social, and policy actions they can take if they are harassed or excluded from student organizations. I’ll share stories from those who have experienced campus antisemitism and offer advice on navigating these challenges, highlighting the support networks established by Jewish organizations and law firms.

Workplace Discrimination: In the workplace, antisemitism can manifest in subtle or overt ways, from being harassed for opinions on the Middle East to being overlooked for promotions. CEOs and employers often find themselves unprepared to handle geopolitical issues that spill into the office. My book addresses these challenges, offering insights into employment law and real examples of antisemitic discrimination. I’ll consult with legal experts and interview workers who have faced on-the-job harassment, providing actionable advice for both employers and employees.

The book will also explore policy and legislation, interfaith and intercultural dialogues, and community action. It will feature real-life examples and stories of triumph over antisemitism, expert interviews, and insights.

As a child and grandchild of Holocaust survivors, I have studied and written about antisemitism my entire life. I’m the former managing editor for JTA, my work has appeared in mainstream and Jewish publications, and I have interviewed a range of experts on identifying and fighting antisemitism. This book is the culmination of that experience.

If this sounds like something you’d like to support, you can find more information on my Kickstarter page. (https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/fightingantisemitism/a-practical-guide-to-fighting-antisemitism). If it’s something you believe in, then please spread the link on your social media channels. This is a community effort.

Howard Lovy is a Michigan-based author, book editor and journalist. 

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