Reconciliation During Times of Conflict Symposium

Must the cycle of violence between Jews and Arabs in the Middle East continue indefinitely? Israeli psychology professor Maya Kahanoff thinks the answer is “no.” Alongside her Arab colleagues, Kahanoff has served  as an academic consultant and evaluator for the Forum for Peace and Reconciliation among Bereaved Palestinian and Israeli Families. The Forum brings together Jews and Arabs who lost family members to inter-ethnic violence. For more than a decade, the Forum has put concepts of reconciliation to the test, allowing the victims of the Arab-Israeli conflict to look across the emotional divide which separates them. Building on this success, the Forum has more recently sought to influence the political sphere and society at large in Israel and Palestine.


Kahanoff, a lecturer at Hebrew University, has co-authored a number of papers with Arab researchers that gauge the effectiveness of the Israeli-Palestinian Forum and its relevance for peace and reconciliation efforts elsewhere in the world. At Webster University, Kahanoff will show portions of a documentary about the Forum’s work and discuss her latest findings. Political scientist Andrew Rehfeld will comment on Kahanoff’s presentation, and there will opportunities for audience questions and responses.


This event will be of interest to people interested in peace studies, the psychology of bereavement, the Israeli-Arab conflict, and truth commissions and human rights. It is co-sponsored by the Institute for Human Rights and Humanitarian Studies at Webster University and the Michael and Barbara Newmark Institute for Human Relations of the Jewish Community Relations Council. 


Reception to follow.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013 at 7:00pm

Community Music School
535 Garden Ave., St. Louis, MO, 63119


The Institute for Human Rights and Humanitarian Studies, Departments


Middle East, Israel, War, conflict, Arab



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Gary S.

Gary S. 9/6/2013

Sorry, but I feel it will take much more than feel-good academic posturing to effect real change in the Middle East. Golda Meir summed it up when she stated, "We will have peace when our enemies love their children more than they hate us."

I can understand some of the hate that is directed at the West, particularly when we are threatening the Middle East with yet another war to be fought in the name of "democracy", but we must stop kidding ourselves about the tragic realities of birqas; oppression of women, gays and minorities; honor killings; female circumcision; persecution of Christians and Jews; and suicide bombings. Our reluctance to confront these issues has created a tacit acceptance of them. Only GOOD things are worthy of tolerance. Let us look for the good, but not ignore the evil on any side.