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From Dialogue to Action: Enacting Change on the Streets of Jerusalem with Dr. Yakir Englander

  • Congregation Dorshei Tzedek 60 Highland Street West Newton MA 02465 (map)

Dr. Yakir Englander is one of the founders of Kids4Peace International, a grassroots interfaith youth movement dedicated to ending conflict and inspiring hope in Jerusalem.

Dr. Englander is now directing a new program, Dialogue to Action, which engages Palestinian and Jewish young adults from the Jerusalem area in interfaith dialogue, skill-building, and nonviolent action to promote social and political change.

In the midst of one of the most divided cities in the world, where meaningful and positive contact between Jews and palestinians is difficult if not impossible, Dialogue to Action brings together individuals from a wide range of backgrounds and religious and political convictions to engage in dialogue that leads to practical action for change.  The project works with local and regional organizations to develop joint programs and events in the Jerusalem area to further the work of transforming the role of religion in the Israeli/Palestinian discourse on the conflict through the use of blogs, radio appearance and public speaking engagements.

Originally from the Ultra-Orthodox community of Bnai Brak, Israel, Dr. Englander earned a PhD from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem in Jewish philosophy and gender studies.  The CDT Israel Trip met with him this past July and found his personal story and his work to be truly transformative.  In addition to being Executive Director of Dialogue to Action, Englander is a scholar at the Shalom Hartman Institute and a visiting scholar at the Harry S. Truman Research Institute for the ASvancement of Peace in Jerusalem.  He is a Fulbright scholar and was a visiting professor of Religion at Northwestern University and Harvard Divinity School.  In addition to his academic works, Englander has been published in The Times of Israel, Huffington Post and Islamic Commentary on thenes of interfaith relations, religion and violence, and nonviolent social change.