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Birthright Israel and the Creation of Ritual

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Publication Date: April 2002

Publisher(s): Jewish Life Network

Author(s): Shaul Kelner

Special Collection: Berman Jewish Policy Archive

Topic: Culture and religion (Religion and religious groups)
Education (Study abroad)

Keywords: Israel Experience; Jewish Youth; Ritual

Type: Other

Coverage: United States


This article examines ritual creativity and innovation among young people, relating how some young men on a Birthright Israel trip made unconventional use of a shofar as a means of forming community and expressing masculinity. It argues that Jewish identity building programs must anticipate and foster such creativity, taking into account the whole person and not just those aspects deemed a priori to be "Jewish."

In Contact, Spring 2002