Book Launch - Polarization and Consensus-Building in Israel (Elie Friedman, Michal Neubauer-Shani and Paul Scham)
This online book launch will present a newly published edited volume examining the most pressing social and political issues confronting Israel from a multidisciplinary perspective, focusing on the breakdown of social solidarity and the inability to achieve consensus.
The contributors – encompassing political scientists, historians, communication researchers, sociologists, economists, and educators – focus on specific topics that serve as exemplary cases of various trends of consensus and polarization. These trends are examined in the context of ideological, religious, economic, national, and ethnic cleavages. In addition, this volume analyzes how political actors’ preference for “non-decision” on various issues has resulted in the maintenance of a status quo, with cleavages or conflicts being neither mitigated nor polarized. Together, this collection of articles paints a picture of Israel as a state racked by increasing polarization along ideological and religious lines. It is argued that this difficulty in determining a consensual definition of the state threatens to destroy social solidarity in Israel altogether, a climate in which “the center cannot hold.”
September 13, 2023, 19:30-21:00 (Israel Time)