2023 Bernard Lewis Prize

European anti-Semitism, in both its theological and racist versions, was essentially alien to Islamic traditions, culture, and modes of thought. But to an astonishing degree, the ideas, the literature, even the crudest inventions of the Nazis and their predecessors have been internalized and Islamized. The major themes—poisoning the wells, the invented Talmud quotations, ritual murder, the hatred of mankind, the Masonic and other conspiracy theories, taking over the world—remain; but with an Islamic, even a Qur’anic twist.

- Prof. Bernard Lewis

The 2023 Bernard Lewis Prize is awarded to scholars or practitioners engaged in the study of issues on antisemitism that were of great importance to our founding chairman, Prof. Bernard Lewis. While Christian antisemitism is well-studied, a stigma remains around addressing antisemitism in the Muslim world. Beyond this, relatively few scholars focus on the Middle Eastern dimensions of Christian antisemitism in religious and cultural terms, much less the political impacts in the West.

The Bernard Lewis Prize will award scholarly work, either published or unpublished, that addresses the aforementioned issues. Recipients of the $2,500 prize will be awarded at the Sixteenth Annual ASMEA Conference on November 4 – 6, 2023 in Washington, D.C. Additionally, all finalists for the prize will present and discuss their work during the Conference.

Applicants must be current members of ASMEA to apply. The deadline to submit was June 30, 2023.

Past Winners

2022 Bernard Lewis Recipients

Israel's Moment: International Support for and Opposition to Establishing the Jewish State, 1945-1949 (Cambridge University Press, 2022)
Prof. Jeffrey Herf, University of Maryland, College Park

Saudi Arabia: A SWOT Analysis of a Family-Wahhabi Nationalism Case Study
Dr. Gadi Hitman, Ariel University

Antisemitism in popular culture
Prof. Noha Mellor, University of Sharjah

State-level Incitement against Zionism on the eve of the Aleppo Pogrom of 1947
Dr. Joel Parker, The Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies

2021 Bernard Lewis Recipients

Islam and Judaism: Religious Attitudes and Identity in the Medinan Era
Mr. Mohammed Ahmed, Cambridge University

Turkey’s Islamists, Anti-semitism, and the Palestinian Quesiton, 1908 - 1959
Dr. Tuba Unlu Bilgic, Middle East Technical University

Depicting the Jew in Early Cold War Turkey: The Formation of Israel and the First Arab-Israeli War in Turkish Humor Magazines
Mr. Semih Gokatalay, University of California, San Diego

The Roots of Muslim anti-Judaism and its Links to Modern Arab Antisemitism
Prof. Jacob Lassner, Northwestern University

Watch videos of select videos of the presentations HERE.