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On Thursday evening 14 December, the faculty invites you to a cultural programme on peace and justice in Palestine and Israel. Based on the documentary My Neighbourhood, we will engage with visitors and experts about their experiences, knowledge and ideas about peacebuilding efforts. We will start and end the evening with music by the ensemble Amal and soup.
Event details of A cultural gathering on peace and justice
14 December 2023
19:00 -21:15
BG 3

Almost daily, we are confronted by the media with images of unprecedented threat, violence, collective destruction, and personal loss. Apart from causing dividedness on how to interpret the situation at hand, the images, reports and personal experiences also lead to feelings of fear, helplessness, anger, and sadness. Many people agree that the situation does not call for violence, but for a peaceful solution. But what does it mean to build peace and what is needed to achieve this? What is the meaning of peace in this context and how can we gain a deeper understanding of it?

On 14 December, we will organize an evening to come together in a safe and inclusive environment to reflect on what peace is and how peacebuilding is achieved. Based on the screening of the documentary My Neighbourhood, we will engage with visitors, academics and experts by experience to discuss peace and justice in the context of Israel and Palestine. We will hear more about experiences of peacebuilding efforts there and here. There will be music before and after the programme and the opportunity to individually light a candle in remembrance of the victims.

The evening is for English and Dutch speakers. The whole evening is moderated in English, the film has English subtitles. The roundtable discussion is bilingual.


We will start the evening at 19.00 with soup and music by the ensemble Amal. At 19.30 we will show the film, and at 20.00 the roundtable discussion will start. The evening will be moderated by Kristine Johanson, diversity officer at the Faculty of Humanities.

About the ensemble Amal  (أمل‎)

Especially for this occasion, the ensemble Amal is coming together. Amal means hope, expectation and apsiration in Arabic. "After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music", says Huxley (1894-1963). For this evening, the Amal ensemble has selected Middle Eastern compositions by Ara Dinkjan, Yann Keerim, Goksel Baktagir and others. They will alternate these compositions with open, spatial improvisations. The quartet consists of Leah Uijterlinde (clarinet/vocals), Talal Fayad (oud), Mahyar Tahmasbi (cello) and Panayiotis Hadjithomas (percussion). Together, they create a moment of introspection and connection through the power of music.

About the film My Neighbourhood

Mohammed El Kurd is a Palestinian boy growing up in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood in the centre of East Jerusalem. When his hometown is occupied by Israeli settlers, his family is forced to give up half of their home to people he does not know. Together with his family and other residents of the neighbourhood, 11-year-old Mohammed begins a peaceful protest. Suddenly, to their surprise, they are supported by Israelis who disagree with the forced evictions.

Roundtable discussion

Based on the film, we will discuss peace and justice together with moderator Kristine Johanson, Erella Grassiani, Thomas van Gool and the initiators of Deel de Duif (Share the Dove).

Erella Grassiani

Erella is a Dutch-Israeli anthropologist and associate professor at the UvA. She researches nationalist militias and social movements in Israel and studies the politics of trees in her project on tree nationalism. In the past, she has done extensive research on the Israeli army and published a book on the subject: Soldiering under Occupation processes of Numbing among Israeli soldiers in the Al-Aqsa Intifada (2013, Berghahn Books). She is also co-founder of gate48 platform for critical Israelis in the Netherlands.

Thomas van Gool

Thomas van Gool is Israel-Palestine project leader at peace organisation PAX. He works with Israeli and Palestinian peace and human rights activists. Besides supporting their important work in Israel and Palestine, Thomas tries to ensure that their voices can also be heard in the Netherlands. International law is an important guiding principle and a better and more effective Dutch policy towards Israel and Palestine based on this is an important goal. Thomas previously lived in the Middle East for several years including two years near Bethlehem, where he worked for a local organisation. He studied International Relations in Groningen and Middle East Politics at SOAS in London.

Deel de duif

A group of Amsterdam's Muslim and Jewish youth has started a peace initiative. "We all look at the situation in and around the Gaza Strip with an awful lot of pain in our hearts. The images and facts are terrifying, the orchestra of opinions can be heartbreakingly overwhelming; sometimes we lose ourselves and each other completely in it." That is why Noa, Selma, Oumaima and Boaz, all of Jewish or Muslim origin, are setting up an initiative to stay in conversation: Deel de Duif (translation: Share the Dove). During this evening, Selma and Boaz will join in and talk about their project.


The programme starts at 19.00 and ends at 21.15. Participation in the programme is free, but you must register in advance. You can do so via the registration form. It takes place at VOX-POP, Binnengasthuisstraat 9, ground floor.

BG 3

Binnengasthuisstraat 9
1012 ZA Amsterdam