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Degree Ceremonies, National Anthems and Belonging

Yesterday I attended my degree-award ceremony at Coventry University in the UK. Because of the close ties (both geographical and institutional) between the two bodies, all the degree ceremonies take place in the august setting of Coventry Cathedral. The original cathedral was destroyed in a German bombing raid on the city during World War II. … Continue reading

Narratives of the anti-Boycott Law

Reading the different opinion pieces about the latest Anti-Boycott Law, it strikes me that here we have a living example of the way narratives and facts interplay. Fact: the Knesset passed a law banning attempts to boycott either the State or any part thereof. But this fact is interpreted in radically different ways, each side … Continue reading

Freedom of Speech – or Taking Your Conscience Shopping

This freedom of speech thing is getting complicated. I think it’s time I posted a list of the things I’m not allowed to say above my desk.  I must remember not to mention the Naqba. I must remember not to suggest boycotting settlements – and perhaps just to make sure I don’t get into trouble, … Continue reading

Why I will be marching in favour of a Palestinian State on July 15th

A week today, on Friday July 15th, I will be joining the march in support of the Palestinian Declaration of Independence. This will put me on the fringes of Jewish-Israeli society and will not win me a popularity contest. Yet both the sense of my moral duty and my own enlightened self-interest come together to motivate me to … Continue reading

Jewish and Democratic

For a few days now I have been struggling to work out what I really want to say about the commotion surrounding the interrogation of the supporters of the supposedly Halachic work, ‘Torat HaMelech’ (‘Laws of Sovereignty’). One of the excerpts I have heard quoted (though I have not and do not intend to read the … Continue reading