Educating for Rights in a Context of Protracted Conflict – The Case of the Occupied West Bank
Dr Mai Abu Moghli
UCL Institute of Education
5:30pm – 7:00pm, 22nd March 2017
UCL Institute of Education (20 Bedford Way, London, WC1H 0AL)
The Palestinian Ministry of Education (MOE) was established in 1994 following the signing of the interim peace agreement (the Oslo Accords) between the Israeli government and the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO). Palestinians in the Occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip inherited a weak, neglected and fragmented education system. However, over the years the MOE was able to increase the number of schools and decrease illiteracy rates. An important departure from the old curricula was the inclusion of human rights and citizenship education. In this presentation, II will focus on three questions related to the introduction of HRE in PA schools:
1. What are the reasons behind the introduction of HRE in Palestinian Authority (PA) schools?
2. How do stakeholders make meaning of and implement HRE?
3. What is the relationship between HRE and the struggle against the Occupation and for political and social change?
Drawing upon ethnographic data generated from six months field research trip(s), and examination of available literature, I will problematise the theoretical basis of HRE and highlight the importance of indigenous knowledge and strategies used to bring the decontextualised global HRE to the nuanced and politicised local, leading to a reconceptualisation of HRE that provides an alternative understanding of its potential contribution to the emancipation of the individual and collective within a polarised, multi-layered, and fast changing context.
Dr Mai Abu Moghli is a Palestinian/British human rights practitioner and academic who specialises in human rights education. Mai holds a PhD from the UCL Institute of Education and a Master’s degree in human rights from the University of Essex. Her research focuses on human rights education in Palestinian Authority schools in the Occupied West Bank. Mai has also published articles on Palestinian/ Syrian refugees. She has worked extensively in the field of human rights in the MENA region and taught human rights theory and human rights education in both the UK and in the Occupied West Bank.