In accordance with Massachusetts regulations, capacity limits and other restrictions are in effect for in-person campus events. Please see Campus Event Guidance for Spring 2021 for more details.

Understanding the Forces that Drive Us Apart: A Symposium on Polarization

Event Details

February 5, 2019
9:30 am

Campus Center

Room: Auditorium

UMass Amherst Campus

Handicap access available
Free admission
Lajeanesse Harris

This daylong symposium will help participants understand the history and dynamics of political and social polarization as well as offer opportunities to build skills to overcome it.  Featured speakers include Lecia Brooks, Outreach Director, Southern Poverty Law Center; Jelani Cobb, Professor of Journalism, Columbia University; Daniel Ziblatt, Harvard University. Book signing opportunities will also be available. Sponsored by the Office of Equity and Inclusion.

Program Summary

9:30 am: Opening Remarks

10:00 am: Plenary Session: Hate in Historical Perspective

12:00 pm: Lunch Keynote Address: Hate in the US Today with Lecia Brooks, Outreach Director, Southern Poverty Law Center

1:00pm: Plenary Session: The Structures of Polarization

2:30pm: Breakout Sessions: Building Skills to Combat Polarization

  1. How to be an Intersectional Ally

  2. Intergroup Dialogue

  3. Using Dialogue to Bridge Political Divides Between Massachusetts & Kentucky

2:30pm: Watch. Learn. Grow. Documentary Film Screening: Abrazos

4:00pm: Speech On and Off Campus: A Conversation with Jelani Cobb, Professor of Journalism, Columbia University. Moderated by Anna Branch, Professor of Sociology and Associate Chancellor for Equity and Inclusion, UMass Amherst.

6:00pm: Evening Keynote Address: Insights from How Democracies Die with Daniel Ziblatt, Harvard University



The Campus Center is located in the middle of campus at 1 Campus Center Way. Parking is available in the Campus Center Garage.

More details on directions and parking.