Israel Programs

Teaching About Israel

Lectures, panels, workshops, documentary films, cultural and holiday events about Israel have long been a central part of BJ’s Israel Programming. Of equal importance are events we sponsor that are intended to challenge our assumptions and to bring differing viewpoints to light, educating ourselves about the stories in Israel that are not presented by the mainstream media.

Hebrew-Speaking Havurah

Sunday, May 19 | 5:30-7:00PM | Location given upon registration

Get together with other Hebrew speakers to discuss current affairs. Each month, a topic will be chosen and reading material (in both English and Hebrew) will be provided. At each meeting, we will hold a discussion in Hebrew.

This class meets on the second Sunday of each month*, registration is closed. 

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Hebrew Ulpan Classes אולפן עברית

Monday, May 20 | 5:00-7:00PM and 7:00-9:00PM | Community House

Registration for this series is closed. Classes are held every Monday. 

Join members of the BJ, Habonim and Shaare Zedek communities in a small group environment to build and improve your Hebrew conversational skills. The Hebrew Ulpan course teaches the fundamental structure of Hebrew and its basic forms, as well as the necessary vocabulary for everyday conversations, reading, and writing. This class is open to both members and non-members of the three synagogues so invite your friends to join!

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Israeli Film Club

Tuesday, June 11 | 7:00-8:30PM | Middle Room

Join us for a five-session series, featuring five short Israeli films that were carefully chosen from dozens of prize-winning works. The films present various perspectives on key issues in Israeli society. These movies will serve as a platform for post-screening discussions, allowing participants to reflect on diverse and relevant aspects of the Israeli people, culture and politics.

This series is free of charge, but registration is required. Sign up for your preferred screening(s) via the form below.

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Israeli Queer Emigration

Saturday, June 1 | Following Kiddush | Chapel 

To open Pride Month at BJ, join Dr. Hila Amit (the author of A Queer Way Out – The Politics of Israel Emigration, a new study about Israeli emigrants in NYC, London, and Berlin), as well as Israeli emigrants living in NYC, as they provide an overview of the Israeli LGBTQ community and its intricate relationship with state.

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Annual Celebrate Israel Parade

Sunday, June 2 | 12:15PM | 53rd Street between 5th and 6th Avenue

Join the BJ rabbis and fellow members of the BJ community as we show our support of Israel on its 71st anniversary. Get out your Israeli flag as we walk/sing/rollerblade/push strollers down 5th Avenue. We will be marching as part of an Upper West Side coalition of synagogues. An official parade t-shirt will be provided at the meeting point.

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Israeli Art and Culture Salon Series

Sunday, June 2 | 5:00-7:00PM | Location given upon registration

In this six-part salon series, BJ members will get to meet some of the most promising Israeli artists working in New York today. These musicians, visual artists, singers, and actors will perform in an intimate, home setting, drawing on an overarching theme that will shed new light on Israeli arts and culture. The series is curated by BJ’s music director Dan Nadel, and facilitated by BJ’s shaliah Moshe Samuels.

Featured Guests: Musician Or Bareket and writer Hila Amit

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Israeli Book Club

Monday, June 3 | 7:00-8:30PM | Middle Room

BJ’s Israeli Book Club is more than just your typical reading group—it is an intimate encounter with Israeli culture, society, and politics. Join us for a good read and nuanced conversation that will help you gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of contemporary Israeli issues.

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The 7th Annual Israel Film Center Festival

Monday, June 3-Wednesday, June 12 | Various Times| Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Ave

BJ is proud to partner with Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan in presenting some of the best Israeli films of 2018-2019.

BJ members will enjoy a 25% discount on all tickets by using the code ifcbj19.

Click the link below to learn more and purchase tickets.

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Cooking in Hebrew: A Course in Israeli Cuisine

Thursday, June 6 | 6:30-9:00PM | Frankel Hall

Food is a world unto itself. It’s a peep-through window, a bridge between worlds, and a key to different cultures. Food brings people together and opens hearts; it comforts and stimulates memories.

Register now for the spring semester.

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Programs From Previous Years


Ruth Gavison2015, UWS Yom Ha’atzmaut –  Envisioning The Future, What does the future hold?, Professor Ruth Gavison
Celebrating Israel’s founding and it’s vision. Join Renowned law Professor, Ruth Gavison who will discuss with Dr. Jonathan Cummings her vision for the future of Israel as a Jewish and Democratic State, as well as looking into the advantages and disadvantages of the proposed laws that deal with nationality.

Click here to listen to a recording or the talk.

 

The Israeli Book Group, book covers.Israeli Literature Book Group (2012-2013 Carol Balin & Jennifer Sylvor & 2014-2015 Orli Moss & Ellen Bender)
Always wanted to read novels by Israel’s greatest authors? What can the books teach us about Israeli society that we don’t learn from the newspaper headlines? We read and discuss books that provide insight and provoke conversation.

2014/2015
World Cup Wishes / Eshkol Nevo
Suddenly a knock on the door / Etgar Keret
Dancing Arabs / Sayed Kashua
The Hilltop / Assaf Gavron
The Falafel King is Dead / Sara Shilo
2012/2013
A pigeon and a boy / Meir Shalev
Homesick / Eshkol Nevo
Second person singular / Sayed Kashua
And the Rat laughed/ Nava Semel
The people of forever are not afraid / Shani Boianjiu
To the End of the Land / David Grossman

The Hilltop, Assaf GavronAuthor Assaf Gavron Speaks About His New Book – The Hilltop (March 14, 2015)
Join Dr. Jonathan Cummings, our Behind the Headlines analyst and Ellen Bender, our Israeli Literature group facilitator as they interview Gavron about his best selling new Novel, The Hilltop, and discuss his thoughts on the upcoming elections in Israel. This event is part of Hagiga Ivrit, a week long celebration of Hebrew language and culture in NYC.