"Peaceful and harmonious coexistence" and "freedom from strife" are not typically concepts that one applies to the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian relationship, but such are the very goals that lie at the heart of the groundbreaking Galil-Jalil School -- one of the first Middle Eastern institutions to promote multiethnic education by pairing the children of Holocaust survivors and the children of Palestinian refugees in the same classrooms. Revolutionary at its core, the institution witnesses its instructors working subtly against the current of inter-ethnic hatred and intolerance by promoting cross-cultural understanding, respect, and acceptance. And lest this seem naïve or overly idealistic, one should consider the fact that the teachers themselves hail from both Israeli and Palestinian backgrounds -- thus enduring the same difficulties and struggles as their charges. With their documentary Galil, A School With No Walls, filmmakers Sharon Hammou and Avi Hershkovitz create a multi-layered portrait of the Galil-Jalil school by plunging into the individual life stories and accounts of the students and their teachers. More broadly, Hershkovitz and Hammou build a case for the idea that the approach of Galil-Jalil might serve as a model for a non-violent future across the entire Middle Eastern landscape.
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