NEXT WEEK: Mohammed El-Kurd And Kenneth Roth Event!

We want to call your attention to an upcoming event at UMass featuring award-winning Palestinian poet and writer Mohammed El-Kurd and former Human Rights Watch executive director Kenneth Roth. This event is free and open to the public.


Dispossession, Resistance & Human Rights
Featuring Mohammed El-Kurd and Kenneth Roth
Monday | Nov. 13 | 7:30 p.m.
Mahar Auditorium

Award-winning Palestinian poet and writer Mohammed El-Kurd and prominent human rights activist and attorney Kenneth Roth will appear in-person at UMass-Amherst to discuss the escalating crisis in Gaza, Israel, and the occupied territories. The event will take place Nov. 13, at 7:30 p.m., in Mahar Auditorium on campus. Mohammed El-Kurd, the Palestine correspondent for The Nation magazine, will speak about the current situation in Gaza and the broader crisis engulfing Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem. Kenneth Roth, the former executive director of Human Rights Watch, will discuss the situation in Gaza from the perspective of international law, human rights law, and the legitimate and illegitimate uses of state violence in the name of self-defense. The event is free and open to the public, but tickets are required. Get tickets here.


MOHAMMED EL-KURD is an internationally touring and award-winning poet, writer, journalist, and organizer from Jerusalem, occupied Palestine. He has emerged as a leading voice in the growing global movement calling for a ceasefire in Gaza, and appeared in a recent Double Down News video about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that has gone viral. In 2021, he was named as one of the 100 most influential people in the world by TIME Magazine. He is best known for his role as a co-founder of the #SaveSheikhJarrah movement. His work has been featured in numerous international outlets and he has appeared repeatedly as a commentator on major TV networks. Currently, El-Kurd serves as the first-ever Palestine Correspondent for The Nation. El-Kurd holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Brooklyn College (CUNY) and a BFA in Writing from Atlanta’s Savannah College of Art & Design (SCAD). He is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the Arab American Civil Council’s “Truth in Media” Award (2022), as well as the Cultural Freedom Fellowship from the Lannan Foundation (2023). He is currently a Civic Media Fellow at the Annenberg Innovation Lab at the University of Southern California. El-Kurd has lectured and performed around the world including as the keynote for the 18th Annual Edward Said Memorial Lecture at Princeton University, at the Internazionale literary festival in Ferrara, Italy, and most recently at Adelaide Writers’ Week in Australia.


Kenneth Roth is the former executive director of Human Rights Watch, one of the world’s leading international human rights organizations, which operates in more than 90 countries. Prior to joining Human Rights Watch in 1987, Roth served as a federal prosecutor in New York and for the Iran-Contra investigation in Washington, DC. A graduate of Yale Law School and Brown University, Roth has conducted numerous human rights investigations and missions around the world. He has written extensively on a wide range of human rights abuses, devoting special attention to issues of international justice, counterterrorism, the foreign policies of the major powers, the work of the United Nations, and the global contest between autocracy and democracy, and has met with dozens of heads of state and countless ministers. He is currently a Senior Fellow at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Roth made national headlines earlier this year when Harvard withdrew its fellowship offer to him and then reversed its decision after a public outcry charging the university with trying to silence Human Rights Watch’s past criticisms of Israeli human rights violations.