Chapter 3 The People, the Land and the Law: Jewish-Israeli Religious Zionists in Dialogue Groups with Palestinians

In: Jews in Dialogue

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Abstract

The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict involves not only territorial disputes, but also contested identities and competing narratives. Dialogue encounters between Israeli-Jews and Palestinians aim to bridge the gap between identities and narratives through intergroup contact. These encounters are largely identified with secular and leftist values, while religious Jews are often associated with a more hawkish and less conciliatory position. This study explores through qualitative methods and in-depth interviews the participation of Israeli-Jews from the Religious Zionism camp in dialogue encounters with Palestinians. Religious Zionism is a subgroup of Orthodox Judaism which attributes religious significance to the modern State of Israel.

Our findings indicate that the encounter between the beliefs of our religious Zionist Jewish-Israeli interviewees and Palestinian narratives elicits dilemmas. On a broader level, this study contributes to our understanding of the ways in which this specific ideological and social background affects perception changes during dialogue encounters. It also contributes to expanding our knowledge on the relationship between religious norms and ideology, as well as social and psychological elements of the participation of religious Zionist Israel-Jews in dialogue encounters with Palestinians.

Jews in Dialogue

Jewish Responses to the Challenges of Multicultural Contemporaneity. Free Ebrei Volume 2

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