Innovative, Inclusive, Independent

The Birkbeck Institute for the Study of Antisemitism is a centre of innovative research and teaching on antisemitism, racialization and religious intolerance. It contributes to knowledge and understanding, policy formation and public debate.

What's On

Seminars, conferences, workshops, public lectures

Study

Public courses, undergraduate and postgraduate teaching, MPhil/PhDs

Resources

Books, essays, reports, comment, podcasts

Research

Projects, partnerships, networks, fellowships

Latest Update: Welcome to the website of the Birkbeck Institute for the Study of Antisemitism, formerly the Pears Institute.

WORLD LEADING EXPERTISE

Birkbeck Institute for the Study of Antisemitism

The Birkbeck Institute for the Study of Antisemitism (formerly the Pears Institute), was established in 2010 by Birkbeck, University of London and Pears Foundation 

Our founding principle informs our vision and our work: that the study of antisemitism is vital to understanding other forms of racialization, racism and religious intolerance. 

We are an internationally recognized centre for innovative research and teaching.  

Our scholarship contributes to public debate on antisemitism, racialization and religious intolerance and we provide expertise and advice to a wide range of institutions in the UK, Europe and the wider world.   

The Birkbeck Institute for the Study of Antisemitism is both independent and inclusive. 

 Explore the Institute

Activity

What's On

Everyday Zionism in East-Central Europe

Books

Everyday Zionism in East-Central Europe

Jan Rybak

Oxford University Press, 2021

This book offers a profoundly new picture of the role that Zionism played in East-Central European communities during the First World War and a new interpretation of Zionism’s breakthrough as a key social and political movement in the region. It also makes fresh contributions to the understanding of relations between Empire and nation and the development of post-war violence in East-Central Europe.

Of Fear and Strangers: A History of Xenophobia

Public Event | Online

15th November, 2021

Of Fear and Strangers: A History of Xenophobia

Professor George Makari, Weill-Cornell Medical College and Professor Stephen Frosh, Birkbeck, University of London

Over the last few years, it has been impossible to ignore the steady resurgence of xenophobia. The European migrant crisis and immigration from Central America to the United States have placed Western advocates of globalization on the defensive, and a ‘New Xenophobia’ seems to have emerged out of nowhere.

Performative Holocaust Commemoration in the 21st Century

Books

Performative Holocaust Commemoration in the 21st Century

Diana I. Popescu and Tanja Schult (eds.)

Routledge, 2021

This edited volume charts the performative dimension of Holocaust memorialization through a selection of artistic, educational, and memorial projects. It explores how performative practices came into being, what impact they exert upon audiences, and how researchers can conceptualise and understand their relevance.

Competing Modes of Anti-Racism in Britain since the 1960s
Neil Kenlock, Black Panther Demonstration, London, 1970s

Webinar | For Scholars

19th October, 2021

Competing Modes of Anti-Racism in Britain since the 1960s

Joseph Finlay, University of Southampton

‘Antisemitism’ and ‘Racism’ are highly contested terms today, with little consensus on their definitions, and even less on how they may or not relate to each other. This talk will argue that there have been two distinct modes of anti-racism in Britain since the 1960s with their roots in the creation of the first Race Relations Act in 1965.

Heroes? Nations, Memory and the Jews

Public Event | Online

2nd November, 2021

Heroes? Nations, Memory and the Jews

Dr Ludivine Broch, University of Westminster; Dr Michael Carter-Sinclair, King's College London; Dr Victoria Khiterer, Millersville University; Professor Elizabeth Tingle, De Montfort University.

Memory is a vital component of national identity. But when it comes to Jews, national histories are mixed. In many cases, when nations have forged their identity, they have drawn the boundaries of their community in ways that exclude Jews.

The Civic Gospel and Images of Islam: Race, Religion and Difference on Display at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, c.1885
Presented by the Right Honourable Joseph Chamberlain, 1885.

Webinar | For Scholars

12th November, 2021

The Civic Gospel and Images of Islam: Race, Religion and Difference on Display at Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, c.1885

Kate Nichols, University of Birmingham

William Müller’s 1843 Prayers in the Desert is widely referred to as the first British painting to show Muslims at prayer, and it was undoubtedly one of the earliest to do so. Kate Nichols will explore what Prayers in the Desert might tell us about Victorian understandings of Islam, and how the display of this painting created dialogues about race, religion and difference in the supposedly secular context of the museum.

Statement – 1

The founding principle of the Institute is that the study of antisemitism is vital to understanding racialization, racism and religious intolerance.

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