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1 februari 2017

People of Faith are never without Hope!

Peace, Trauma, and Religion in the conflict of Israel/Palestine
Public Lectures 2017 at the VU University – Faculty of Theology

“I am not optimistic, but people of faith are never without hope!” – This was the answer of a religious leader from Israel/Palestine, when we was asked recently, how he imagines the future of the people of “Holy Land”, given the current political situation.

Israel/Palestine has witnessed an ongoing conflict, that seems almost impossible to be transformed into a peaceful situation of justice. How to imagine peace with justice in this context of ongoing human rights violations, terror attacks, occupation and discrimination? The complexity of the context involves historical trauma, land issues, economic interests, international law issues, even war, and many other aspects – last but not least religion! There is hardly any conflict in which it seems so obvious, that religion and different peoples of faith play a significant role: Jews, Christians, and Muslims. For some, religion is the root-cause of the conflict itself. For others, religion is the only hope left.

What exactely is the role of religion in the complexity of this conflict?
 It is this question, that motivated the VU-students of the Master spezialization on “Peace, Trauma, and Religion” to visit the context itself (March 2017), hosted by the Tantur Ecumenical Institute – on a hill in the outskirts of Jerusalem near Bethlehem. In order to gain some deeper insight, we want to learn from people of different faiths in their contexts, and experts from different disciplines about the role of religion – in the midst of trauma, violence and injustice.

In this series of Public Lectures 2017 we want to continue our analysis in the University-classroom. The lectures will address different aspects of the question at stake, addressed by scholars who have studied the context deeply for some time, some have even lived there. Their insights will help to
-    describe religious identities, and their interconnectedness,
-    identify historical claims, memories and trauma of religious groups,
-    gain clarity of the instrumentlization of religion in the given context,
-    gain insights about the potential role of religions in peacemaking
-    name concrete examples of building “just peace” from faith perspective

We welcome everyone who takes interest in the themes and the people of Israel / Palestine to join in.  

All lectures are held at the VU University Amsterdam (De Boelelaan 1105) in the lecture room HG09-A16 on Tuesdays from 13.30-15.15 hrs. We intend to begin at 13.30, so a timely presence is appreciated. The exception is Prof. Dr Moyaert’s session, which takes place on a Thursday (same timeslot and room).

Please indicate your interest to: Doopsgezind Seminarium, Vera Kok (seminarium@ads.nl)

These lectures are part of the Master course “Introduction to Peace-Theology” (year 1, period 5). However, we welcome anyone who takes an interest in Palestine-Israel to join us. Attendance is free of charge. However, it is highly appreciated if you inform us of your intended attendance via e-mail.

Timetable
4 APRIL | PEACE, TRAUMA AND RELIGION IN THE CONFLICT OF PALESTINE-ISRAEL
Insights from the Excursion of VU-Students of the Master Specialization on Peace, Trauma, and Religion - Prof. Dr Fernando Enns and Students

11 APRIL | ZIONISM AND ITS EUROPEAN CHRISTIAN ROOTS
Dr Janneke Stegeman

18 APRIL | ECUMENICAL ACCOMPANYMENT WITH THE PEOPLES OF ISRAEL AND PALESTINE
A Report from “Christian Peacemaker Teams” – Experience - Drs Han Cuperus

2 MAY | RELIGIOUS ASPECTS OF THE MIDDLE-EAST CONFLICT
Theological and Historical Perspectives - Dr Yaser Ellethy

4 MAY | WHO ARE THE PEOPLE OF GOD?
A Comparative Theological Reading of the Story of Jacob and Esau - Prof. Dr Marianne Moyaert

9 MAY | VIOLENCE AND NON-VIOLENCE IN THE CONTEXT OF OCCUPATION
A Christian-Palestine Perspective - Viola Raheb, University Assistant Mag.


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