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.

 

 

 

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New Article: Hager & Jabareen, Arab-Palestinians in Israeli Academia

Hager, Tamar, and Yousef Jabareen. “From Marginalisation to Integration: Arab-Palestinians in Israeli Academia.” International Journal of Inclusive Education (early view; online first)
 
URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13603116.2015.1090488
 
Abstract

The Arab-Palestinian minority in Israel, one-fifth of the country’s population, has been underrepresented in Israeli institutions of higher education since the establishment of the state. This article focuses on the authors’ shared aim of promoting diversity and multiculturalism in institutions of higher education in Israel. It first introduces Arab marginalisation within Israeli society as a whole. Subsequently, it offers a critical overview of existing data and research on the challenges faced by young Arab-Palestinians in higher education institutions in Israel. Based on this indispensable analysis, which clearly shows the numerous obstacles that await Arab-Palestinians on their path to graduation, the article goes on to suggest some required changes. Presenting some useful policy transformations and courses of action, it subsequently introduces multicultural academia as a better conceptual and practical framework for achieving inclusive education.

 

 

 

New Article: Fischer, Religion and Education in Israel

Fischer, Shlomo. “The Crises of Liberal Citizenship: Religion and Education in Israel.” In Religious Education and the Challenge of Pluralism (ed. Adam B. Seligman; Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2014): 119-49.

 

9780199359479

 

Excerpt

The religious Zionist community is starting to understand the place of civics and citizenship within the new Israeli public discourse, and it wishes to be part of that discourse. It understand, too, that it can make its own unique communitarian or republican contribution to that discourse, but it understands two further things as well: it understands that if it entirely disregards the liberal citizenship discourse of individual human and civil rights, of tolerance and of pluralism, it will lose its ability to communicate with the larger Israeli public. Much to its chagrin, it has all ready experienced such a break in communication during the Disengagement from Gaza in 2005. It discovered then that it had no allies in the Israeli public sphere to help it prevent the evacuation of seventeen settlements in the Gaza strip. It wishes very much to reestablish lines of communication in order to prevent a reoccurrence of that event. Secondly, it understands that it cannot seriously offer a citizenship discourse for the entire community if it offers no modicum of inclusion, of membership, and of tolerance to the non-Jewish minorities of the country. Alongside its communitarian and republican orientation, and alongside its integral nationalist demands that Israel remain a Jewish country, it must find room for the other non-Jews, even the Palestinians. Hence, it seeks from within the Jewish tradition resources of tolerance and inclusion. Only time will tell whether it actually achieves a new synthesis of nationalism and democracy, and of republicanism and inclusiveness.

 

 

New Article: Shani and Ram, Inclusion in Israel and Ecological Perspectives

Shani, Michal and Drorit Ram. “Perceptions of School Administration Team Members Concerning Inclusion in Israel: Are They in Congruence with the Ecological Sustainable Perspective?” British Journal of Special Education (early view; online first).

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1467-8578.12103

 

Abstract

Based on an ecological perspective, inclusive education should involve two essential components: a shared ideology of providing a culturally responsive educational system where the needs of every child are met and a school policy geared towards the implementation of inclusion practices, with collaborations among staff members who create sustainable relationships. The study’s aim was to gain a better understanding of School Administration Team Members’ (SATMs’) perceptions of inclusive education in general elementary schools. It was found that although SATMs expressed pro-inclusion ideological statements, they have not yet manifested an ecological view of inclusion de facto that is holistic in nature. By and large, respondents expressed reactive rather than proactive perceptions. It appears that collaborations have not yet been initiated where inclusion is discussed, and a shared ideology is constructed. The research suggests that the perceptions of SATMs reflect perspectives of problem solving, survival, and partial collaborative networks that do not fully embrace ecological sustainable perspectives.