Israel banished Arabs from Israel
Outrage at the Ministry of EducationIsrael bans romance novels from schools
It's a mixture of ridicule and outrage that has been pouring over the top of the Israeli Ministry of Education since this morning. Commentators in newspapers and radio stations are tearing up Minister Naftali Bennett and his top official Dalia Fenig in the air, social networks are seething, and writers are stunned in numerous interviews. Stunned that the novel "Borderlife" by the Israeli author Dorit Rabinyan is no longer allowed to be read in Israeli schools. What also stunned the writer herself:
"The Ministry of Culture rejected the book because of the subject, because of our fear of losing our Jewish identity. We lived in the diaspora for 2,000 years and still not assimilated. But now we live with fluid boundaries between the Jewish and the Arab people. And now those in the ministry think you can protect the delicate souls of teenagers from reality by keeping them away from a novel that deals with that question. "
Author receives Bernstein Prize
In a way, it's a simple love story that Dorit Rabinyan is telling. A man and a woman fall in love. But if the story had nothing more to offer than that, it would not have won the prestigious Bernstein Prize for Young Israeli Authors.
The woman in Dorit Rabinyan's novel is called Liat, she is a translator. The man's name is Hilmi, he's an artist. They both bump into each other in New York, where they spend a winter. Far from their home. Liat, the woman, comes from Tel Aviv, she is Jewish. Hilmi is from Ramallah, he is a Palestinian Muslim.
U-turn in the Ministry of Education
The great old man of Israeli literature, Amos Oz, was deeply impressed when the book came out a year and a half ago. Many literature teachers in Israel were also impressed. And they asked to put the book on a reading list for all state schools. The responsible committee of the Ministry of Education agreed. And then suddenly the U-turn. Dalia Fenig, a top official, banned the book from being read in Israel's schools. And shortly afterwards, the Minister Naftali Bennet from the right-wing settlers party gave her backing.
With razor-sharp sarcasm, the newspaper "Haaretz" dissected the reasons for the reading ban today. According to the ministry decision, young people are not in a position to assess the importance of maintaining the identity of a people. The newspaper translates this into everyday language. And then the sentence reads: The Ministry of Education is against the mixing of Jewish and Arab blood. And that is why the columnist comes to the conclusion: In Israel's most important ministry, a race theory is being institutionalized. In view of the massive criticism, the ministry has already rowed back. The ban could be checked again soon.
There was a listener riddle this morning on the Galatz army station. The question: How many of the six and a half million Jews and one and a half million Israeli Arabs make the nightmare of the Ministry of Education come true and marry each year? The listeners guessed thousands, some even tens of thousands, of such marriages per year. In truth there are only about twenty.
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