Conferences - Ethiopian Jewry Heritage Center


The Center for Ethiopian Jewish Heritage and its affiliated research institute will hold academic conferences throughout the year, as well as book launches and folklore conferences about the heritage, history, and culture of Ethiopian Jewry. The main annual conference of the institute is held every February, and other events are held periodically and according to special dates on the calendar, such as: the Sigd holiday, the anniversary of Operation Solomon, and the anniversary of Operation Moses. The conferences will be advertised on the organization’s website and on social media. The public is invited to follow the updates.

March 27
International Conference “Beta Israel – A History of Coping and Struggle

International Conference Beta Israel – A History of Coping and Struggle

Tisch Center, ANU Museum, Tel Aviv University Campus
27.03.2023 - 28.03.2023 00:00

The third conference of the Ethiopian Jewry Heritage Center, in collaboration with the Goldstein-Goren Diaspora Research Center at Tel Aviv University; the Africa Unit, S. Daniel Abraham Center for International and Regional Studies, Tel Aviv University; the Azrieli Center for Israel Studies (MALI), Ben Gurion Institute for the Study of Israel and Zionism, Ben Gurion University of the Negev; ANU Museum of the Jewish People; the Baron De Hirsch Fund; The Zvi Yavetz School of Historical Studies, Tel Aviv University


Monday, 27.3.2023 – Opening Evening

16:00 – 17:00 - Conference participants are invited to a guided tour at the ANU Museum of the Jewish People, and to experience the new tour on the topic of the Beta Israel community. 17:00 – 17:30 – Gathering and refreshments. 17:30 – 18:00 – Greetings Moderator: Ziona Desta Nega Dr. Simcha Getahune, chairwoman of the Ethiopian Jewry Heritage Center Prof. Avi Bareli, director of the Ben-Gurion Institute for the Study of Israel and Zionism, Ben Gurion University Prof. Roni Stauber, head of the Goldstein-Goren Diaspora Research Center, Tel Aviv University Steven Friedman, representing the Baron De Hirsch Fund Dan Tadmor, CEO of ANU – the Museum of the Jewish People 18:00 – 18:30 Keynote Lecture Danny Admasu, MALI, Ben Gurion University of the Negev A Narrative of Glorification and Exclusion in the Aliyah of the Ethiopian Jews in the 80s: ‘Operation Moses’ as a Test Case 18:30 – 19:45 Roundtable: Aliyah Activists Participants: Abraham Yerday, Addisu Masala, Belaynesh Ayeh, Rahamim Elazar, Babu Yakov 19:45 – 20:00 Concluding Remarks Naphtali Avraham, CEO, Ethiopian Jewry Heritage Center Tuesday, 28.3.2023   9:00 – 10:30 Chair: Prof. Bat-Zion Eraqi Klorman, The Open University of Israel Matteo D’Avanzo, Scuola Normale Superiore in Pisa and INALCO, Paris From Italian Fascist Rule to Jewish Internationalism through the Experience of Ethiopian Jews Dr. Alemayehu Erkihun Engida, Wollo University, Dessie, Ethiopia Ramifications of Boundary Disputes on the Beta-Israel Community: Evidence from Metema and West Armachiho Dr. Desalegn Amsalu, Addis Ababa University Legal Treatment of the Betä Israel Community in Ethiopia: A Historical Overview 10:30 – 11:00 Coffee Break 11:00 – 12:00 Second Session: Challenges of Survival (in English) Chair: Prof. Irit Back, Tel Aviv University Dr. Marcia Kupfer, Independent scholar The Representation of Jews and Judaism in Solomonic Ethiopia Dr. Tirsit Sahledingle, Addis Ababa University A Jewish Community of Kechene in Addis Ababa 12:00 – 13:30 Lunch Break 13:30 – 15:00 Third Session: Coping with Challenges in Ethiopia – Part 2 (in Hebrew) Chair: Prof. Esther Meir, Ben Gurion University of the Negev Dr. Wovite Worku-Mengisto, Hebrew University of Jerusalem and David Yellin College and Dr. Bar Kribus, Tel Aviv University The Impact of the Ethos of the Struggles in the Sǝmen Mountains in the Days of the Gideonite Dynasty on the Life of the Betä Ǝsraʾel Community in this Region in Later Times Mauricio Lapchik Minski, Ben Gurion University of the Negev Jews and Judaism in Ethiopia in the Eyes of the Jesuits – Resistance and Struggles Dr. Shula Mola, Brandeis University In the First Person: The Story of the Beta Israel Community from the Village of Enkash – Beyond the Myth of Persecution and Rescue 15:00-15:30 Break 15:30 – 16:30 Fourth Session: The Struggle for Aliyah (in Hebrew) Chair: Dr. Aviad Moreno, Ben Gurion University of the Negev Mordechai Baruch, Ariel University The Ways in Which the Religious Leader Qes Berhan Baruch Coped in His Twofold Struggle: Vis-à-vis the Christian Mission in Ethiopia and the Zionist and Rabbinical Institutions in Israel Dr. Louise Fischer and Michal Saft, Israel State Archives ‘If the Rescue Activities Will Not Increase in Momentum… There Will Be No One To Save’: The Israeli Government and the Beta Israel Activists in the Struggle for Aliyah from Ethiopia. 16:30 – 17:30 Roundtable: Social Activists Moderator: Dr. Shula Mola Participants: Avi Yalou, Ziva Mekonen-Degu, Itzhak Tayeb, Banchi Meshesha 17:30 – 18:00 Break 18:00 – 19:30 Fifth Session: Social and Political Struggles in Israel (in Hebrew) Chair: Dr. Simcha Getahune, Kibbutzim College Dr. Elad Wexler, Ethiopian Jewry Heritage Center The Struggle of the Ethiopian Jews Against the Chief Rabbinate and Against the Giyur le-Chumra Uri Perednik, Bar Ilan University Israel Even Though He Has Sinned? A Critical View on the Media Coverage of the Struggle for the Aliyah of the Ethiopian Jews between the Years 2015-2020 Dr. Ravit Talmi-Cohn, Ruppin Academic Center A Vague Aliyah Policy – Its Expressions and Consequences 19:30 – 19:45 Concluding Remarks Prof. Galia Sabar, Tel Aviv University   The conference will be broadcast live on the Ethiopian Jewry Heritage Center's website.