Hadassah

Different Values, Different Zionist Politics

Is Israel as important as it was a generation — or two — ago? Yehuda Kurtzer, president of the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America, joins Hadassah's Defining Zionism in an exploration of generational shifts around Israel, taking a close look at the values we must recognize and wrestle with to bridge divides and advance meaningful conversations. In the Diaspora, feelings of tensions and pride come naturally to all who are stakeholders in Israel and the future of Zionism.

DISCLAIMER: Hadassah is not affiliated with the featured speakers who participate in the Defining Zionism series, or with their affiliated organizations. The opinions and viewpoints expressed by the speakers do not necessarily reflect Hadassah’s positions and Hadassah does not endorse or make any representations regarding the speaker or information presented by such speaker.


Join Dr. Yehuda Kurtzer as he discusses the following topics:


Why are American Jews distancing from Israel?
Why are American Jews distancing from Israel?

“If there’s a particular issue that Jews fight about more than anything else, it’s the state of Israel.” Is Israel as important as it was a generation – or two generations – ago? Why is there so much intra-communal conflict among America Jews?

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Storytelling + Values = Politics
Storytelling + Values = Politics

Kurtzer talks about how we’re shaped by the value systems and stories we grow up with, including collective narratives around Israel, which shift with time. This gives us one way to understand why we see shifts in generational politics.

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Wrestling with Six Competing Jewish Values
Wrestling with Six Competing Jewish Values

Being mindful of six core Jewish values that drive American views on Israel -- justice, self-preservation, etc. -- helps us create empathy and advance conversations. “Wrestling seriously with each of these values is going to force us not just to understand Israel differently but to understand Judaism differently,” says Kurtzer.

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Great Chutzpah! The Idea of a Universalist Utopia
Great Chutzpah! The Idea of a Universalist Utopia

What problem is Zionism trying to solve? What does it mean to be a light of nations? Is Zionism a tool for something more?

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Zionism as Reconnection
Zionism as Reconnection

Looking at Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik’s interpretation of the Song of Songs as a metaphor, Kurtzer explores the idea of reconnecting with God via Israel.


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Zionism: A Testing Ground for Judaism
Zionism: A Testing Ground for Judaism

What happens when a nation is run according to Jewish values? The state of Israel gives us an opportunity to see — which makes Diaspora Jews stakeholders. This means that sometimes we can take great pride, but it also leads to great tensions.

 


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