Local workshops aim at transforming Canadians’ views on Israel-Palestine

Independent Jewish Voices (IJV) is offering two workshops that may benefit Winnipeggers interested in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, and seeking more effective methods to discuss it with family and friends. Called Beyond Polarized Kvetching: Speaking Effectively on Israel/Palestine, the sessions will be held at the drop-in room at Winnipeg’s WestEnd Commons (641 St. Matthews Avenue), in the St. Matthews Maryland Community Ministry basement on March 20 and April 6, 2017.

The workshops will run from 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm, and cost $30 each. Both will be facilitated by Emily Green, a queer Ashkenazi Jewish activist from Toronto.

The first workshop will offer participants an opportunity to describe instances when they had experienced difficult or antagonistic conversations regarding Israel-Palestine. The workshop will discuss the conscience of the “other”, and explore how different modes of communication may obstruct or enhance political discourse. There may be role-playing exercises involved, too.

The second workshop will focus on problematizing Zionism, confronting its historical roots and questioning some of its core assumptions.

Conversations on Israel-Palestine, particularly among family, tend to produce emotional responses in opposing groups or individuals who remain poles apart.

Primarily aimed at members of Winnipeg’s Jewish community, the workshops will remain critical of Israel’s militarized society and acknowledge the difficulties many experience when attempting to broach the topic of Israeli-Palestinian relations. Emotionally-charged ideas, feelings and memories must be met with effective interpersonal communication if any attempt at reconciliation is to succeed.

For more information about IJV events, visit their Facebook page here.

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