Friends beyond the Bridge: Learning and Getting to Know the Other

By Anat Raviv.

Published by The International Journal of Diverse Identities

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: November 10, 2015 $US5.00

The study presents a multi-year plan that creates a bridge and connection between Arab and Jewish teenaged students. The plan’s aim is to impart recognition, understanding, and support of one another through the convention of mutual understanding. The study was conducted in the 2013–2014 academic year and included a mixed study group and a control group. The program participants (n = 70) learned main values of acceptance (M = 5.12, SD = 1.09) and realized some of them as part of joint ventures. Significant findings following the participation in the project were reflected in the following area: 1) Awareness of the right to be different and the need to accept others; 2) Ability to establish a meaningful dialogue with others and understand the other’s culture without stigma and prejudice; 3) Acknowledgement of similar needs despite intercultural differences. Students who participated in the program made meaningful contacts and held significant dialogue with members of the other group, developed empathy, and discovered common patterns of life. The main conclusions indicate that getting to know others is associated by most of the participants with a better life and awareness that there is a relation between familiarity with the other and a sense of confidence and a quieter and safer life experience.

Keywords: Right to Be Different, Meaningful Dialogue, Intercultural Differences

The International Journal of Diverse Identities, Volume 15, Issue 4, December 2015, pp.11-25. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: November 10, 2015 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 711.447KB)).

Dr. Anat Raviv

Lecturer, Department of Education and Human Services, Tel-Hai Academic College, Haifa, Israel