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On Screen and IRL: Shtisel and The New Haredim

Thursday, January 30, 2020 at 7:00 pm

A conversation with Shtisel creator and award-winning writer and director Yehonatan Indursky and Pnina Pfeuffer, prominent Haredi social activist, self-described feminist and advocate for Jewish-Arab shared society. Join these incredible thought leaders as they explore creativity, community and connection in Israel and in their own lives.

With Shtisel, Yehonatan Indurksy has invited us into a world set in the cobblestone labyrinths of Haredi Jerusalem that dances on the margins of earthly desire and mystical imagination. He has opened up a gate into a world where Haredi protagonists are fully formed and fleshed-out characters -- deeply, radically human. They live out and contend with their most human desires in the Yiddish-tinged vernacular of contemporary Jerusalem. Indursky paints the vibrant inner lives of characters who, to those outside of it, occupy a world too often shrouded in stereotype, disinterest and unconcern. Yet Shtisel offers us a way in. Shtisel asks us to listen deeper.

Today, “new Haredim” like Pnina Pfeuffer are broadening the scope of what Haredi politics looks like, defining a new discourse that spans beyond social and economic challenges, one that is about Haredi feminism, about justice and the possibility of radical inclusion.

What would it be like to bring into conversation this urgent work that is transforming what is imaginable in the realm of culture and in the realm of politics? What would a conversation between an iconoclast Haredi feminist and a shining light of Israeli film and television do? It would be nothing short of two stars colliding. The force of that collision, a true dialogue, might just shed the light we need to see beyond the boundaries of what is possible, and lay the groundwork for a genuine partnership for change.

This event is co-hosted with the New Israel Fund.