Comedic sketch performance highlights importance of cultural diversity, equality

Students offer new perspectives through eye-opening discussions

Cory Kay, Assistant Features Editor


A duo of comedic actors with a program called The Black-Jew Dialogues came to CSUSM to put on a performance highlighting the negative impacts of cultural stereotyping and discrimination.

This performance was part of the fall 2015 Arts & Lectures series at CSUSM and was held on Oct. 22 in ACD 102.

The two actors began the evening by introducing the Black-Jew Dialogues and the goal of the program.

“The only way we’re going to get past all the issues we have in this country as far as race, gender, culture, religion is…not by turning around and hoping it goes away, but by going through it,” said Ron, one of the Black-Jew Dialogues actors.

The two actors engaged the audience through multiple comedic skits that involved stereotypes of both the Jewish and African-American communities, through sharing of personal experiences and through discussions of words that we, as a society, misuse.

The skits they performed involved discussions between the two characters about racial stereotypes.

They discussed traditional Jewish and black foods. Then they asked audience members to describe the foods of their unique cultures.

Another aspect of the performance that engaged audience members was the discussion of the use of offensive terms and slurs, particularly the “N” word.

“For any word like that, it’s not how it’s given. It’s how it’s taken that means the most,” said Ron.

The actors engaged in many eye-opening discussions during the performance, including ones on the importance of respect, and another about regarding all Americans as equal no matter their ethnic background.

“With the exception of Native Americans, we’re just everyone from everywhere else,” Ron said.

The actors wrapped up the evening with a conversation between themselves and the audience, during which members of the audience shared their thoughts and personal stories. Following this discussion, the actors gave the audience some final words of wisdom.

“You are the inheritors of the biggest cultural seismic shift in the history of the world,” one actor said. “The world is rapidly changing.”