Book talk: “Reclaiming Judaism from Zionism -Stories of Personal Transformation”


Carolyn L. Karcher, editor and contributor
Professor Emerita of English, American Studies, and Women’s Studies at Temple University

Emily Siegel,  contributor
Program Director, Eyewitness Palestine

Rebecca Vilkomerson, contributor
Executive Director, Jewish Voice for Peace

**A light lunch will be served at 12:30 p.m. Talk begins promptly at 1:00 p.m. 



In this powerful collection of personal narratives, forty Jews of diverse backgrounds tell a wide range of stories about the roads they have traveled from a Zionist world view to activism in solidarity with Palestinians and Israelis striving to build an inclusive society founded on justice, equality, and peaceful coexistence. Join us for presentations by Carolyn Karcher, Emily Siegel, and Rebecca Vilkomerson.

Contributors include: Joel Beinin • Sami Shalom Chetrit • Ilise Benshushan Cohen • Marjorie Cohn • Rabbi Michael Davis • Hasia R. Diner • Marjorie N. Feld • Chris Godshall • Ariel Gold • Noah Habeeb • Claris Harbon • Linda Hess • Rabbi Linda Holtzman • Yael Horowitz • Carolyn L. Karcher • Mira Klein • Sydney Levy • Ben Lorber • Shoshana Madmoni-Gerber • Carly Manes • Moriah Ella Mason • Seth Morrison • Eliza Rose Moss-Horwitz • Hilton Obenzinger • Henri Picciotto • Ned Rosch • Rabbi Brant Rosen • Alice Rothchild • Tali Ruskin • Cathy Lisa Schneider • Natalia Dubno Shevin • Ella Shohat • Emily Siegel • Rebecca Subar • Cecilie Surasky • Rebecca Vilkomerson • Jordan Wilson-Dalzell • Rachel Winsberg • Rabbi Alissa Wise • Charlie Wood


To read a review of the book click here.

Biographies of Speakers

Carolyn L. Karcher is Professor Emerita of English, American Studies, and Women’s Studies at Temple University, where she received the Great Teacher Award and the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching. She is the author or editor of nine books, of which Reclaiming Judaism from Zionism: Stories of Personal Transformation is the latest. Besides collecting and editing the personal narratives the book contains by forty Jewish scholars and activists, including four rabbis, Karcher wrote an introduction and afterword setting these stories in historical context. Karcher has been a member of both the national Jewish Voice for Peace organization and of its DC Metro chapter for many years.

Emily Siegel is the Program Director at Eyewitness Palestine (formerly Interfaith Peace-Builders), which organizes educational delegations to Palestine/Israel. She holds a B.A. in international relations with minors in Jewish studies and sociology from the University of Delaware and an M.A. in international peace and conflict resolution from American University’s School of International Service. Emily is a trained facilitator and her research and work has focused on the intersection of justice, peace-building, and social change through education.

Rebecca Vilkomerson is the Executive Director of Jewish Voice for Peace (, a leading national organization inspired by Jewish tradition to work for a just peace for all the people of Israel and Palestine.  JVP has over 250,000 supporters around the country, over 70 chapters, an active Rabbinical Cabinet and a growing youth wing. Rebecca has been a member of JVP since 2001. She lived with her family in Israel from 2006-2009. In 2010 she was named one of the 50 most influential Jewish American leaders by the Forward, and and was named one of the 50 most influential Jewish leaders worldwide by the Jerusalem Post in 2017. She has been widely published in numerous media outlets, including The Los Angeles Times,, The Nation, The Hill, Huffington Post, Tikkun and Zeek.




Bookings are no longer available for this event.