7 October: an open call for contributions to an LCSCA response

Dear friends and colleagues,

The key political and intellectual divide today is between those who stopped to consider the events of 7 October, and those who reached fluently for rationalisation; those who judged the events to be catastrophic, and those who either trivialized them or who were seduced by the fantasy that they could harness their own lofty aspirations to the intimate power ‘of the powerless’ who burst into Jewish homes that morning.

Some of our university colleagues welcomed the massacre, thinking it indicative of new heights achieved by those who struggle for liberation; some denied that it had happened; some contextualized it into triviality alongside the systemic and universally significant violence of Zionism.

Some of our colleagues cheered the Iranian rockets launched randomly from Gaza, Lebanon and Yemen. Some remain unmoved at the relentless killing of women protestors in Iran, and they sneer at the ‘femonationalists’ who offer solidarity. Some are willingly ignorant of the mode of rule in Iran and lack the imagination to fear an Iranian nuclear weapon.

Some of our colleagues accuse Israel of genocide, with intent to destroy their Palestinian neighbours. Some say the Israeli response is revenge or collective punishment, carried out with no achievable military goal.

Some of our colleagues march in solidarity, alongside people celebrating the slaughter of Jews, they sing for the destruction of Israel and they hope for global ‘intifada revolution’.

Some of our colleagues have treated antisemitic thinking and antisemitic fervour either as relatively trivial or as an articulation of justified hostility to Israeli oppression. Opposition to antisemitism is often regarded as a more serious marker of depravity than antisemitism itself.

Rosa Freedman and David Hirsh are co-editors of the Studies in Contemporary Antisemitism book series, an LCSCA and Routledge collaboration. We are calling for contributions to a book of responses to 7 October. 

Each piece will be 3,000 words and will focus on one aspect of events. The perspectives will be academically grounded but they will be accessible to a general reader. We hope to include perspectives from in, around and between the academic disciplines of law, human rights, war studies, international relations, politics, philosophy, sociology, criminology, anthropology, Jewish studies, gender studies, Israel and Middle East studies, language studies, history, media studies, peace studies and literature.

We hope to receive perspectives on military practice and strategy, self-defence, urban and asymmetric warfare, theories of power, antisemitism, Islamophobia, racism, collective violence, Islamism, totalitarianism, Zionism, Arab and Palestinian nationalism, news and media discourse, propaganda, antizionism and criticism of Israel.

Perspectives are shorter than standard academic chapters or articles, but authors may well write with a view to working their piece up to a standard academic form later; the Journal of Contemporary Antisemitism will be hoping to publish some of these in due course.

There is a deadline of 4 December 2023 for submissions. 

We will then send comments back on selected pieces with a view for final submission on 3 January, allowing us to aim for a Spring publication date. 

These are hard deadlines.

We are including some detailed submission guidelines here, at this early point. We have set ourselves a very quick turnaround time for this book and we have not allocated time or resources for mechanical administrative tasks like reformatting manuscripts or footnotes. We need people to get these right as they work, and not hope that somebody will fix it for them later. 

We will be using numbered endnotes at the end of each piece and we will be using the Harvard system of referencing. Submissions should be made in MS Word.

Quotations used as epigraphs do not fall under fair usage. Epigraphs are not to be used and will be removed if less than 150 years old. It is easy enough to include quotations in your text instead. Quotations should be not more than 400 words if from books, 50 words if from newspapers, blogs or speeches.

We are looking forward to hearing from friends and collaborators, old and new, before 4 December.

Very best wishes, 

Rosa Freedman and David Hirsh

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