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50 Days of Israel

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by

Dusty Klass

on 16 August 2014

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Transcript of 50 Days of Israel

50 Days of Israel
Blogging about Israel
The motivation:
multivocal narratives
written in connection/acknowledgment of Jewish time

The rules:
250 words OR
3 captioned pictures OR
a 2-3 minute video
(and as with all rules, they're more ...guidelines...)
The Prompts
Familiar: "What is the one story all American kids should learn about Israel?"

Jewish-time focused: "As we move from Passover to Shavuot, the Israelites travel further away from the slavery of Egypt and toward the moment of revelation at Sinai. Where are you in that journey in relation to your thoughts/emotions/feelings about Israel?"

Courtesy of Scott Frankel: What is YOUR Israel story?
What actually happened
A blog was born!

Expected:
Lots of awesome voices
mostly Reform, mostly HUC

Unexpected:
Time commitment/planning
Taking Jewish time into account
Expanded blogging knowledge!

Stats:
561 views (and counting!)
Top four viewed posts came from four very different people
Comments from readers
"new, clean insights on a favorite place. I've learned how it is a country and people and culture experienced so differently by every person who is fortunate enough to walk there. The many senses of Israel come alive through the variety of writers. It gives me great hope!"
"I enjoy reading the blog precisely because I know you (and your contributors are names with which I am familiar). At least that's why I started reading it.
I keep reading it because the writing style(s) make it easy for me to read and understand.
I am passionate about Jewish learning, Jewish topics, Jewish language. ... I read your iCenter blog because I want to learn as much as I can about Israel from all different points of view."

As a Diller Coordinator who just finished hosting Israelis, and mid-planning and preparing to take the Diller Fellows to Israel this summer, I found myself asking the same questions this blog poses: what do these teens need to know when learning about Israel and forming their own deeper personal connection to Israel?" This educator used some of the blog entries with her teens to start a conversation about how Israel connects with their own identity.
The blog cements the fact that I am not the only committed Jew with these frustrations. It includes voices of [people who] allow me to sit comfortably with my own criticisms of Israel. They make me realize that with a love of Israel comes a wanting to improve it, and that this is okay. The blog encourages me to ask myself the questions which she poses in her first post. With each answer by a different writer, I am presented with something new to consider and a new contribution to my own answer. It is helping to carry me therefore along my own journey from slavery to revelation, from confusion about Israel to an understanding and acceptance of the beautiful complexities that shape this Jewish homeland.


Visiting the Blog
http://50daysofisrael.wordpress.com/2014/05/21/processing-israel-through-doodles-dusty-klass/

http://50daysofisrael.wordpress.com/2014/05/15/honeyblood/

http://50daysofisrael.wordpress.com/2014/04/20/where-do-you-go-when-no-one-wants-you-eli-karon/

http://50daysofisrael.wordpress.com/2014/04/17/moving-toward-shavuot-rabbi-jan-katzew/
Full transcript