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The Promise of Integrated Multicultural and Bilingual EducationInclusive Palestinian-Arab and Jewish Schools in Israel$
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Zvi Bekerman

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199336517

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199336517.001.0001

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Ceremonial Events

Ceremonial Events

(p.226) (p.227) 9 Ceremonial Events
The Promise of Integrated Multicultural and Bilingual Education

Zvi Bekerman

Oxford University Press

This chapter describes the efforts of the staff and administrators of the integrated bilingual Jewish-Palestinian schools in Israel to construct new school ceremonies that reflect their ideological goals and encourage each group—Jewish, Moslem, and Christian—to celebrate its own cultural identity while respecting the heritage of the other. Through the ethnographic analysis of data gathered at four ceremonial events, the chapter outlines the potential of school rituals to support this endeavor. Drawing on texts, traditions, and symbols, the rituals attempt to transform collective memory in order to shape anew the participants’ identities and their intergroup relations. The argument is made that if multicultural education is to alleviate the interethnic tension of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, it must offer options to refashion teachers’, parents’, and students’ understandings of cultural borders and their positions within different cultural arenas.

Keywords:   bilingualism, multiculturalism, classroom practices, peace education, Palestinian-Israeli conflict, identity, culture, religion, dialogue

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