Protestant Theologian Conducting Campaign to Rid Textbooks of Anti-semitism

A Protestant theologian on the staff of the American Jewish Committee’s inter-religious affairs department is conducting a nationwide campaign to eliminate anti-Semitic stereotypes from Protestant religious textbooks. Gerald Strober has just concluded a series of discussions with textbook publishers and editors of nine Protestant denominations in which he encouraged them to present Jewish life and culture in an “authentic and positive” manner in textbooks and other educational materials used in church schools, the AJ Committee said.

Mr. Strober’s assignment was aimed at implementing the findings of a research project in Protestant Church school curricula that he conducted in 1967-68 under the auspices of the National Conference of Christians and Jews and the AJCommittee. The project stemmed from a seven year study conducted at Yale Divinity School by Dr. Bernhard Olson who isolated specific historical and religious themes around which prejudice tends to cluster. Mr. Strober said, “One of the aspects of teaching about Jews and Judaism is to incorporate post-Biblical, rabbinic information so that Christians understand contemporary Judaism and the living Jewish community and become acquainted with the ideas of great Jewish thinkers such as Maimonides and Martin Buber.”

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