Bulletin: Peacemaking, Peace Building and the Israeli-Palestinian Peace Process

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New Book: Bekerman, The Promise of Integrated Multicultural and Bilingual Education

Bekerman, Zvi. The Promise of Integrated Multicultural and Bilingual Education. Inclusive Palestinian-Arab and Jewish Schools in Israel. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2016.

 
9780199336517
 

The Promise of Integrated and Multicultural Bilingual Education presents the results of a long-term ethnographic study of the integrated bilingual Palestinian-Jewish schools in Israel that offer a new educational option to two groups of Israelis–Palestinians and Jews–who have been in conflict for the last one hundred years. Their goal is to create egalitarian bilingual multicultural environments to facilitate the growth of youth who can acknowledge and respect “others” while maintaining loyalty to their respective cultural traditions. In this book, Bekerman reveals the complex school practices implemented while negotiating identity and culture in contexts of enduring conflict. Data gathered from interviews with teachers, students, parents, and state officials are presented and analyzed to explore the potential and limitations of peace education given the cultural resources, ethnic-religious affiliations, political beliefs, and historical narratives of the various interactants. The book concludes with critique of Western positivist paradigmatic perspectives that currently guide peace education, maintaining that one of the primary weaknesses of current bilingual and multicultural approaches to peace education is their failure to account for the primacy of the political framework of the nation state and the psychologized educational perspectives that guide their educational work. Change, it is argued, will only occur after these perspectives are abandoned, which entails critically reviewing present understandings of the individual, of identity and culture, and of the learning process.

 
Table of contents

  • Introduction
  • Part 1
  • 1. Positioning the Author
  • 2. Theoretical Perspectives
  • 3. Methodology: From Theory to Implementation
  • 4. Schools in Their Contexts
  • Part 2
  • 5. The Parents
  • 6. Teachers at Their Work
  • 7. The Children
  • Part 3
  • 8. School Routines: Culture, Religion, and Politics in the Classroom
  • 9. Ceremonial Events
  • 10. Conflicting National Narratives
  • Part 4
  • 11. The Graduates
  • 12. Conclusions
  • Author Index
  • Subject Index

 

ZVI BEKERMAN teaches anthropology of education at the School of Education and The Melton Center, Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His main interests are in the study of cultural, ethnic, and national identity, including identity processes and negotiation during intercultural encounters and in formal/informal learning contexts. He is particularly interested in how concepts such as culture and identity intersect with issues of social justice, intercultural and peace education, and citizenship education.

 

 

 

New Article: Kahn et al, Intergroup Sentiments in the Context of an Intractable Conflict

Kahn, Dennis T., Varda Liberman, Eran Halperin, and Lee Ross. “Intergroup Sentiments, Political Identity, and Their Influence on Responses to Potentially Ameliorative Proposals in the Context of an Intractable Conflict.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 60.1 (2016): 61-88.

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0022002714535250

 

Abstract

Two studies examined the association of particular sentiments and political identities with Jewish-Israeli students’ responses to a generic plan to end the Israeli–Palestinian conflict and to narrower proposals for cooperative undertakings. Three composites—hatred/anger, compassion/empathy (reverse-coded), and guilt/shame (reverse-coded), and also a global composite combining these three sets of sentiments, were generally associated with negative responses to those plans and negative attributions about the wisdom and patriotism of supporters of those plans. Most of the associations between the global sentiments composite and the relevant responses continued to be statistically significant even after controlling for participants’ political identity. The interaction between the relevant sentiments and the putative authorship of one of the proposals was also investigated. Issues of generalizability, replicability, robustness, and of the relevance of mediational analysis, as well as implications for conflict resolution and potential directions for future research are addressed in a concluding discussion.

 

 

 

New Article: Nissen and Waage, Norwegian Interventions in Guatemala and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Nissen, Ada and Hilde Henriksen Waage. “Weak Third Parties and Ripening: Revisiting Norwegian Interventions in Guatemala and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.” International Negotiation 20.3 (2015): 389-413.

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/15718069-12341314

 

Abstract

Can weak third parties contribute to ripening conflicts for resolution despite their lack of leverage? According to the core principles of ripeness theory, mediators with leverage have a clear advantage when it comes to ripening. What is often overlooked in the literature, however, is the important ways a weak mediator can contribute to ripening as well. This article explores two noteworthy cases of weak third party ripening – the Norwegian roles in the Oslo channel between Israel and the Palestinians, and between the URNG guerrilla and the government in Guatemala. These cases demonstrate how careful interventions by weak third parties can help disputants see negotiations as a way out both in preliminary and later phases of negotiations. However, we also argue that weak third parties should not get involved in ripening unless they can call on a mediator with more leverage once substantial negotiations begin.

 

 

New Article: Sachs, Why Israel Waits. Anti-Solutionism as a Strategy

Sachs, Natan. “Why Israel Waits. Anti-Solutionism as a Strategy.” Foreign Affairs 94.6 (Nov/Dec 2015): 74-82.

 

URL: https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/israel/2015-10-20/why-israel-waits

 

Extract

In the absence of a final-status agreement in the near or medium term, banishing anti-Israeli and anti-Palestinian incitement from public rhetoric will also become more important. During negotiations for peace in previous years, Israel’s demands for a halt to such talk among the Palestinians often seemed like a play for time. But today, with so much time likely to pass before peace is reached, calls for violence from either side can have a pernicious effect well beyond their apparent scope by encouraging terrorist attacks against both Israelis and Palestinians.

Israeli and Palestinian leaders are unlikely to take serious interim steps toward peace in the near term. Yet the conflict has had many ups and downs over the years, and there will be opportunities for creative policy before long. And because a full resolution is not likely soon, it is all the more important in the meantime that Israel, the Palestinians, and the United States devise coherent policies that are at once realistic about the immediate future and consistently committed to longer-term objectives.

Israel’s anti-solutionism is not absurd, especially in the context of the country’s current geopolitical situation. Yet Israeli leaders can nevertheless be blind to the long-term effects of their actions, and there is much that could be done to improve them. For the Israeli-Palestinian issue, as for many others, 
it is in the pragmatic middle ground between cynicism and idealism that the best policies can be found.

 

 

New Article: Ben-Artzi et al, Conflict Management and Conflict Resolution as Distinct Negotiation Processes

Ben-Artzi, Ruth, Moty Cristal, and Shirli Kopelman. “Conceptualizing Conflict Management and Conflict Resolution as Distinct Negotiation Processes in the Context of the Enduring Israeli–Palestinian Conflict.” Negotiation and Conflict Management Research 8.1 (2015): 56-63.

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ncmr.12046

Abstract

Negotiations in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict are historically traced and compared through an analysis of conflict resolution (CR) and conflict management (CM), defined as distinct negotiation processes. The assumption that CM is a stepping-stone to CR is challenged: Linking the two processes has not only entrenched but exacerbated this enduring conflict. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

 

New Article: Nagar & Maoz, Jewish-Israeli Recognition of Palestinian Suffering

Nagar, Rotem and Ifat Maoz. “Predicting Jewish-Israeli Recognition of Palestinian Pain and Suffering.” Journal of Conflict Resolution (early view; online first).

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/

 

Abstract

Recognition is vital for conflict resolution. This study was designed to learn more about the factors underlying the willingness to recognize the pain and suffering of the opponent in the asymmetrical protracted conflict between Israelis and Palestinians. Data were collected through a public opinion survey conducted with a representative sample of Israeli-Jewish adults (N = 511). Perceptions of threat/distrust toward Palestinians and dehumanization of Palestinians each made a significant contribution to explaining Jewish-Israeli (un)willingness to recognize Palestinian pain and suffering (R2 = .36). Hawkishness made an added significant contribution to the overall explanatory power of the model (R2 = .38). Higher scores on the threat/distrust scale and the dehumanization scale, as well as higher hawkishness predicted decreased willingness to recognize Palestinian pain and suffering. The implications of our findings for understanding the role of recognition and of moral concern in conflict resolution are discussed.

Schubert and Lambsdorff, Negative Reciprocity in the Occupied Palestinian Territories

Schubert, Manuel and Johann Graf Lambsdorff. “Negative Reciprocity in an Environment of Violent Conflict. Experimental Evidence from the Occupied Palestinian Territories.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 58.4 (2014): 539-63.

 

URL: http://jcr.sagepub.com/content/58/4/539

 

Abstract

How is negative reciprocity cultivated in an environment of violent conflict? This study investigates how students in the West Bank react to unfair proposals in an ultimatum game. Proposals submitted with Hebrew as compared to Arab handwriting are rejected more often. Israelis must offer 15 percent more of a given stake than Palestinians in order to achieve the same probability of acceptance. This willingness to lose money by rejecting proposals reveals a preference for discrimination against Israelis, cultivated in the conflict-ridden environment. Students who voice a militant attitude, surprisingly, do not reveal a higher tendency to discriminate, exercising a high degree of negative reciprocity toward all unfair proposals. But those who favor a political role for Islam have a higher inclination to discriminate. This implies that ethnic and religious cleavages do not consistently generate in-group solidarity.

Cite: Newman, Israeli Attitudes Toward Conflict Resolution in the Post-Oslo Era

Newman, Saul. “Between Optimism and Pessimism: Israeli Attitudes Toward Conflict Resolution in the Post-Oslo Era.” Nationalism and Ethnic Politics18.4 (2012): 476-504.

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13537113.2012.734179

Abstract

The Oslo Accords failed to end Israeli-Palestinian violence and led to a final settlement of the conflict. This article examines Israeli attitudes toward conflict resolution and argues that the peace process, despite its setbacks, has increased Israeli support for certain concessions. While support for the “Oslo Process” may have declined, Jewish Israeli acceptance of the creation of a Palestinian state has risen dramatically. Israelis remain committed to continuing the peace process, they just remain highly skeptical that the process will succeed. The article examines the sources of this skepticism. Both lack of trust in Arab aspirations and religiosity are the primary determinants of Israeli unwillingness to make concessions for peace. Trust is tied to present conditions rather than past conditions of conflict. Thus, if trust could be rebuilt, Israeli Jews would be considerably better poised to make political and territorial concessions for peace than they were at the start of the “Oslo Process.” Although the relative fertility rates of Orthodox Jews, compared to secular Jews, might undermine long-term support for peace, this might be counterbalanced by the growing dovishness of young secular Russians socialized in Israel.