- Pathfinder

Reply To: Have you been exposed to harmful antisemitic tropes about Jewish control over finances or foreign policy? After participating in this course, how would you go about responding to these tropes if you encounter them?

Lillian Gillespie

My campus was belatedly subject to a BDS attempt to ban Sabra hummus. The woman leading the charge created and posted posters around campus that, instead of explaining that Sabra sent care packages to IDF soldiers, claimed by eating Sabra hummus and supporting its sale on our campus, we were eating the blood of Palestinians. She used tropes of blood libel to try to persuade members of our community to give up a particular brand of hummus. I didn’t understand the historical significance at first, but after researching and discussing the events with my Jewish friends was able to see that this accusation holds deep cultural significance. I was relatively passive during these events, and never having supported the BDS movement continued to eat Sabra with relish. With the awareness I have now, I would probably have pressured our campus administrators to address the situation more directly (instead they just added another hummus option). I think it was a wasted opportunity to bring our campus together, encourage Christian awareness of modern manifestations of antisemitism that our Jewish friends and peers still recognize, and address stereotypes held by members of our community that could have been potentially deconstructed.