Dr. Daniel Gordis - Keynote Speaker at Mandel JCC Festival of Books
Book: The Promise of Israel: Why Its Seemingly Greatest Weakness is Actually Its Greatest Strength.
Israel's critics in the West insist that no country founded on a single religion or culture can stay democratic and prosperous but they're wrong. In The Promise of Israel, Daniel Gordis points out that Israel has defied that conventional wisdom. It has provided its citizens infinitely greater liberty and prosperity than anyone expected, faring far better than any other young nation. Israel's "magic" is a unique blend of democracy and tradition, of unabashed particularism coupled with intellectual and cultural openness. Given Israel's success, it would make sense for many other countries, from Rwanda to Afghanistan and even Iran, to look at how they've done it. In fact, rather than seeking to destroy Israel, the Palestinians would serve their own best interests by trying to copy it.
Dr. Daniel Gordis is Senior Vice President and the Koret Distinguished Fellow at the Shalem Center in Jerusalem. He is a regular columnist for the Jerusalem Post, and a frequent contributor to the New York Times. The author of nine books on Jewish thought and events in Israel, and a recent winner of the National Jewish Book Award, Dr. Gordis was the founding dean of the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the University of Judaism in California. This international lecturer joined Shalem after spending nine years as vice president of the Mandel Foundation in Israel and director of its Leadership Institute. Professor Alan Dershowitz has called him "one of Israel's most thoughtful observers," and Leonard Fein, a distinguished professor, author and founder of MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, called Gordis "perhaps the single most popular speaker on Israel." Gordis and his wife live in Jerusalem.
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