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School of Politics and International Relations

Empty Cradles: Israel’s Disappeared Children

When: Tuesday, September 20, 2022, 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Where: JW3, Jewish Community Centre London, 341-351 Finchley Road, London, NW3 6ET


Thousands of families in Israel are demanding to know what happened to their children.

A major new exhibition at the Brunei Gallery is about to tell their story, revealing how Jewish children from Yemen, the Middle East, North Africa and the Balkans were systematically removed from their parents in the 1940s and 50s in Israel.

Join us for a screening of a discussion around these events and the subsequent responses to them, from artist Tamar Nissim, activist and academic, Tom Pessah and the curators of the exhibition. The discussion will be followed by Tamar Nissim’s short film about the affair.

Tamar Nissim is an Israeli artist who lives and works in Tel Aviv. Her recent short film The Hygiene Project (2021) offers a powerful artistic lens into the Yemenite, Mizrahi, and Balkan Children Affair and draws on archival research and family testimonies.

Tom Pessah is a mizrachi activist and academic who has been with the Amram Association since 2016. His articles have been published in +972 Magazine, the Forward, and the Israel Mizrahi blog Haoketz.

The panel discussion and Q&A will be chaired by Clive Gabay, Reader in International Politics, and a researcher whose work concentrates on race, antisemitism, and Arab Jewish histories. 

The event anticipates the opening of the exhibition, Empty Cradles: Israel’s Disappeared Children, at Brunei Gallery, SOAS, which is open to the public from 23rd September - 10th December 2022. The exhibition is supported by research at Queen Mary University of London and funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

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