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The Road to Peace: The Potential of Structured Encounters Between Israeli Jews and Palestinians in Promoting Peace

  • Ifat MaozEmail author
  • Yiftach Ron
Chapter
Part of the Peace Psychology Book Series book series (PPBS)

Abstract

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is clearly rooted in competition over material resources and political or territorial control. However, substantive research led by Daniel Bar-Tal has identified the role played by the ethos of conflict, collective memory, and ethnocentric narratives of Israelis and Palestinians in shaping national identities that negate one another and in constructing the reality of the conflict as a “zero-sum game” (Bar-Tal, Int J Intercult Rel 21:491–523, 1997; Bar-Tal, Int J Confl Manage 9:22–50, 1998; Bar-Tal, Polit Psychol 21:351–365, 2000; Bar-Tal, Living with the conflict: Socio-psychological analysis of the Israeli-Jewish society. Jerusalem: Carmel. (in Hebrew), 2007a; Bar-Tal, Culture of conflict: Evolvement, institutionalization, and consequences. In R. Schwarzer and P. A. Frensch (Eds.), Personality, human development, and culture: International perspectives on psychological science (Vol. 2, pp. 183–198). New York, NY: Psychology Press, 2010; Bar-Tal, Intractable conflicts: Socio-psychological foundations and dynamics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013; Bar-Tal et al., Peace education in societies involved in intractable conflicts: Goals, conditions, and directions (pp. 21–43). In G. Salomon and E. Cairns (Eds.), Handbook on peace education, New-York and Hove: Psychology Press, 2009a; Bar-Tal et al., Peace Confl J Peace Psychol 18:40–61, 2012). It is these attitudes and beliefs regarding the causes and course of the conflict, as well as perceptions regarding the enemy and the desired solution to the conflict, that reconciliation-aimed intergroup encounters between Israeli Jews and Palestinians aim to address.

This chapter presents an overview of an extensive research program investigating the processes that take place in such structured intergroup encounters through interviews with Israeli Jews who have been repeatedly involved in such encounters (Bekerman et al., Peace Confl Stud 13:22–44, 2006; Maoz et al., Can talking to each other really make a difference?—Perspectives on reconciliation-aimed dialogues in the conflict between Israeli-Jews and Palestinians (pp. 37–48). In J. Kuriansky (Ed.), Beyond bullets and bombs: Grassroots peace building between Israelis and Palestinians. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2007; Ron and Maoz, Peace Confl J Peace Psychol 19(3):281–294, 2013a; Ron and Maoz, Dynamics Symmetric Conflict Pathways Toward Terrorism Genocide 6(1–3):75–89, 2013b; Ron et al., Int J Intercult Rel 34(6):571–579, 2010). Its goal is to discuss the extent to which the exposure to the narrative of the other through the encounter process can work through and transform deeply set beliefs and values that have been identified by Bar-Tal (Living with the conflict: Socio-psychological analysis of the Israeli-Jewish society. Jerusalem: Carmel. (in Hebrew), 2007a; Culture of conflict: Evolvement, institutionalization, and consequences. In R. Schwarzer and P. A. Frensch (Eds.), Personality, human development, and culture: International perspectives on psychological science (Vol. 2, pp. 183–198). New York, NY: Psychology Press, 2010; Intractable conflicts: Socio-psychological foundations and dynamics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013) as central to the societal ethos that preserves and perpetuates situations of intractable conflicts.

Keywords

Power Asymmetry Intergroup Encounter Peace Education Collective Narrative Interrelated Theme 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of CommunicationHebrew University of JerusalemJerusalemIsrael
  2. 2.The Harry S. Truman Research Institute for the Advancement of PeaceHebrew University of JerusalemJerusalemIsrael

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