Haas/Koshland Award Winner Oren Kroll-Zeldin
Thanks to the Haas Koshland Award, I’m Gaining a New Understanding of Life in Israel
An update from 2012 recipient of the Haas Koshland Award Oren Kroll-Zeldin, currently spending a year of study in Israel
Since arriving in Jerusalem I have had the opportunity to begin fulfilling many of the goals I set out for myself for this year, meeting with Palestinian and Israeli scholars and activists and speaking with them about their work as well as their everyday lives. In our conversations I’m learning about the challenges and strategies of working towards justice, and learning what it means to live in Jerusalem as an Israeli and as a Palestinian.
The Haas/Koshland Award is enabling me to study Jerusalem-dialect Arabic and continue to improve my Hebrew speaking skills. I’m having conversations with people in three languages (English, Hebrew, and Arabic), and often find myself struggling not to mix up the three languages in my head and in conversation with people. I sometimes speak sentences with words in all three languages!
The opportunities that I have this year to live in Jerusalem are changing the way I understand life in the modern Middle East and the way I relate to the State of Israel as a Jew who lives in the Diaspora. I am learning to appreciate the life I live in California in new ways, and am coming to respect the privileges and responsibilities that I possess as a Jew living in the United States today. Thank you tremendously for this opportunity to spend time living in Israel.