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The Gauntlet has been thrown

"The Gauntlet has been thrown": Newspapers, op-eds, and American Responses to antisemitism

Eric Schmalz is the community manager for the History Unfolded project at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. He oversees the review of newspaper submissions to the project website, assists participants with their questions, and helps educators effectively incorporate History Unfolded into various learning environments. Mr. Schmalz specializes in developing and deepening authentic human connections through his work. Before taking on his current position at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Eric taught high school social studies in Charlottesville, VA. He earned his BA in History at the College of William and Mary (2010) and his master’s degree in Teaching (Secondary Social Studies) at the University of Virginia (2011).  This Program is made possible by the Campus Outreach Lecture Program of the United States Holocaust Museum's Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies, supported by Jack and Goldie Wolfe Miller.

This talk addresses the landscape of the United States from the end of World War I to 1941, identifying the historical and social context in which Americans lived. It will also examine the role media played in what Americans knew about the world around them. It concentrates on three influential American leaders, Henry Ford, Father Charles Coughlin, and Charles Lindbergh, who were all involved with the America First Committee and who all spread antisemitic vitriol to millions of supporters. News articles, editorials, and letters to the editor reveal how a number of Americans in various communities in the Midwest and around the country reacted to this antisemitic rhetoric. The talk concludes with generalizations from this period and lessons for the post-war era.

Sponsors:  Principal Center for Global Citizenship, Drake University School of Journalism and Mass Communication, Jewish Federation of Greater Des Moines, Iowa Council for Holocaust Education, and Drake Hillel. 

Thursday, November 8, 2018 at 7:00pm to 8:30pm

Sussman Theater

Event Type



Undergraduate Students, Faculty & Staff, Alumni, General Public, Prospective Students, Parents, Graduate Students





Principal Center for Global Citizenship
Contact Name

Denise Ganpat

Contact Email Address


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