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Bard College Names Kenneth S. Stern Director of Its New Center for the Study of Hate

Mark Primoff
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, NY — Kenneth S. Stern has been named director of the Bard Center for the Study of Hate (BCSH), the College announced today. The Center, a new program of Bard’s Human Rights Project, will support faculty and students throughout the Bard network who want to study and combat hatred and its various manifestations. BCSH will seek to influence public discussion about hatred nationally and internationally.

Kenneth S. Stern ’75, a recipient of Bard’s John Dewey Award for Distinguished Public Service, is an attorney and award-winning author, and an internationally known expert on hatred and antisemitism, who was most recently the executive director of the Justus & Karin Rosenberg Foundation. He has testified before Congress, been an invited presenter at the White House Conference on Hate Crimes, and argued before the U.S. Supreme Court.

“Hatred has always been part of the human condition,” Stern said. “It is too little understood, but is a matter of increasing global urgency.  This academic year BCSH will bring speakers to campus to discuss hatred, and will provide financial support for hate-related senior project research projects. The long-term goal is to make BCSH a central address for anyone – students, scholars, NGOs, and others – who want to understand this vexing question better, including what works best to control or curtail it.”

“I’m delighted to welcome Kenneth Stern to the HRP staff,” said Thomas Keenan, director of the Human Rights Project. “This is an opportunity for Bard to impact both the national discourse on hate, and to create a model for the academic community.”

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About the Bard Human Rights Project
The Human Rights Project is an exploratory research and action initiative at Bard College. Through teaching, public programs, research, and engagement with communities in the region and globally, the Project aims at once to foster critical discussions of human rights theory and practice, and to engage with practitioners on the leading edges of human rights research. Founded in 1999 and directed by Thomas Keenan, the Project developed the first interdisciplinary undergraduate degree (BA) program in Human Rights in the United States in 2003.

About Bard College
Founded in 1860, Bard College is a four-year residential college of the liberal arts and sciences located 90 miles north of New York City. With the addition of the Montgomery Place estate, Bard’s campus consists of nearly 1,000 parklike acres in the Hudson River Valley. It offers bachelor of arts, bachelor of science, and bachelor of music degrees, with concentrations in more than 40 academic programs; graduate degrees in 11 programs; nine early colleges; and numerous dual-degree programs nationally and internationally. Building on its 158-year history as a competitive and innovative undergraduate institution, Bard College has expanded its mission as a private institution acting in the public interest across the country and around the world to meet broader student needs and increase access to the liberal arts education. The undergraduate program at our main campus in upstate New York has a reputation for scholarly excellence, a focus on the arts, and civic engagement. Bard is committed to enriching culture, public life, and democratic discourse by training tomorrow’s thought leaders. For more information about Bard College, visit

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This event was last updated on 10-26-2018