FOCUS ON ISRAEL: Targum Shlishi has placed a particular emphasis on grants related to Israel in 2014. This announcement is part of a series of e-newsletters beginning in Fall 2014 that focuses on our Israeli efforts. We are particularly interested in projects that challenge the status quo in creative, provocative, and generative ways. Our motivation? We are facing many challenges in Israel and the Jewish world, including the external threats of terrorism and the de-legitimization of Israel, internal factionalism, and even our rapidly evolving technology, with its challenges as well as promises. While many of these difficulties are not new, they are more urgent than ever. It is time to explore different methods.
(Miami, November 30, 2014) – Targum Shlishi is supporting Eretz Acheret (A Different Land), a website that continues the important work of the Israeli print magazine of the same name, established by leading Israeli journalist and thinker Bambi Sheleg and published bimonthly from 2000 to 2012.
The web magazine, which launched in early 2014, publishes content designed to foster understanding of Israeli society’s many different sectors. The content includes both in-depth journalism and critical and philosophical articles. Portions of the Hebrew website have been translated into an English-version site.
Among the primary concerns that Eretz Acheret responds to are the lack of leadership in Israeli society, the existential challenges currently facing the country, and the need for a major journalistic platform, free from external interests, that fosters in-depth discourse.
“We applaud the work that Eretz Acheret is doing,” says Aryeh Rubin, director of Targum Shlishi. “The print edition provided an important independent voice in the alternative media, and this website promises to do much of the same. The more a society has intelligent, alternative media sources, the less likely it is to be dominated by one-dimensional media dictated largely by the powers that be.”
Among the pieces on the English version of Eretz Acheret are: an account of an ideological return to Zionism by a lecturer in German at Tel Aviv University; a consideration of the ways in which privatization leads to an erosion in the status of society’s weaker members and why a stronger connection to Jewish culture will lead to a more just Israeli society; and a call for the religious population to become active in social-economic protest.
The webzine responds to a critical need in Israeli society, according to Sheleg. “Research shows that young Jews are less connected to a Jewish collective consciousness than generations before them. Research also shows that the mainstream media, which exacerbates social differences by highlighting extremism within different social sectors among the Jewish people for the sake of ratings, threatens the future of the Jewish people by deterring young Jews from complex engagement with Israel within their identities. Rather than seek out profound explorations of Jewish peoplehood, young Jews are hounded by superficial images of violence, extremism, and excessive discord.”
Sheleg explains that Eretz Acheret aims to fill “a dire need for a contemporary, cutting-edge digital media that promotes a Jewish dialogue and identity-seeking via complex, positive engagement with the Jewish people and Israel.”
To learn more about Eretz Acheret, please visit its website: www.eretzacheret.org.il.
About Targum Shlishi
Targum Shlishi is dedicated to providing a range of creative solutions to problems facing Jewry today. Premised on the conviction that dynamic change and adaptation have historically been crucial to a vibrant and relevant Judaism and to the survival of its people, Targum Shlishi’s initiatives are designed to stimulate the development of new ideas and innovative strategies that will enable Jewish life, its culture, and its traditions to continue to flourish. For more information on the foundation, visit its website at www.targumshlishi.org.