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Education

The Good Spy, the CIA and Middle East Peace

Event Details
Date/Time: 
Sep 25 2014 7:30pm - 9:30pm
Price: 
$15 ($12 members/students), $25 with signed book
RSVPs strongly advised, limited seating: 323.413.2001
Click here to reserve your seat/book
Café open for dinner at 6 pm
Where: 
Levantine Cultural Center
5998 W. Pico Blvd
Los Angeles CA 90035
Between La Cienega & Fairfax
street parking
Subtitle: 
an evening with Pulitzer-Prize winning author Kai Bird

In line with the Levantine Cultural Center's exploration of American foreign policy, this forum asks, How does the C.I.A. play a role in the Middle East and North Africa? Was Robert Ames, the subject of Kai Bird's bestselling biography, The Good Spy: The Life and Death of Robert Ames, actually an ambassador for peace, particularly with respect to the Israelis and Palestinians? The book offers a "compelling portrait of the remarkable life and death of one of the most important operatives in CIA history— a man who, had he lived, might have helped heal the rift between Arabs and the West." The forum includes a book signing with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Kai Bird and public Q & A. This forum picks up where our previous forum in March 2014, America's Great Game: The C.I.A. and U.S. Middle East Foreign Policy, left off. 

Read a Washington Post review of The Good Spy

Palestine 101 Workshop

Event Details
Date/Time: 
Sep 15 2014 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Price: 
Suggested contribution $10/$5 students/seniors
café open 6:00-9:30 pm for dinner/snacks
Donate Here
Where: 
Levantine Cultura Center
5998 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles CA 90035
Between La Cienega & Fairfax
street parking
Subtitle: 
Decolonize the Mind

In this first installment in a regular workshop series (each self-contained), the Levantine Cultural Center presents Palestine 101, an audiovisual experience that surveys anti-colonial resistance and explores the history, culture and politics of Palestine, from the early 20th century forward. We will delve deeper beyond Hamas and the PLO as we explore how Palestinians have resisted both colonization and the erasure of their history and culture, including a look at poetry, hip hop and peaceful protest.

The workshop will include mention of bicultural coexistence organizations that envision a positive future for Israelis and Palestinians together, such as the village Neve Shalom-Wahat al-Salam (and its School for Peace), the Parents Circle Family ForumCombatants for PeaceJust Vision and others. 

Palestinians and Israelis are working together in a plethora of forward-thinking associationsPalestinians and Israelis are working together in a plethora of forward-thinking associations 
The workshop is open to anyone who would like a more in-depth survey of 20th century history of the Holy Land, up to the present day, with a sympathetic take on the region's pre-1948 inhabitants. A suggested donation of $10 or $5 students/seniors is welcome. RSVPs strongly advised as seating is limited.

From New York to Hollywood, A Panel on Stella Adler and Acting

Event Details
Date/Time: 
Oct 22 2014 7:30pm - 9:00pm
Price: 
Tickets are $15, or $28 with a copy of the hardback biography
"Stella! Mother Modern Acting"
(no one turned away for lack of funds)
café open for dinner/snacks from 6:00 pm
Where: 
Levantine Cultural Center
5998 W. Pico Blvd
Los Angeles CA 90035
Between La Cienega & Fairfax
street parking
Subtitle: 
with Sheana Ochoa, Thom Bishops, Marjorie Ballentine, Mojean Aria, April Webster

Sheana Ochoa, author of the first biography of theatre and acting legend Stella Adler (Stella! Mother of Modern Acting, with a foreword by Mark Ruffalo), will moderate a discussion about the changing craft of acting. The panel features two contemporary young actors of Middle Eastern heritage, influenced by Stella Adler's teachings, Mojean Aria and Thom Bishops; an acting coach who studied extensively with Stella, Marjorie Ballentine; and a casting director formed by the New York theatre world, April Webster. The program will be a dialogue among the panelists about the evolution of acting from the early 20th century until today, and a look at how actors of Middle Eastern heritage are fitting in, despite potential barriers in the business.

Tickets are $15 ($10 members/students with ID), or $28 with a copy of the hardback biography, Stella! Mother Modern Acting (no one turned away for lack of funds). The café is open as of 6 pm serving delicious authentic Moroccan and Middle Eastern cuisine.

Live Stream with Nasim Khoury, Gil Hochberg, Rabbi Neil Comess-Daniels, Aug. 13, 2014

The Crisis This Time: Conversations on Israel/Palestine:If you can't attend tonight's event, please join us on our Livestream! Log in as a guest and share your thoughts with our online community!

http://new.livestream.com/accounts/9506726/events/3273944

Speakers in the second workshop are Palestinian American activist, engineer and businessman Nasim Khoury; Israeli American UCLA professor Gil Hochberg, and Rabbi Neil Comess-Daniels. The moderator is Jordan Elgrably, the Arab Jewish director of the Levantine Cultural Center.

Americans are watching in dismay as Gaza comes under the bombs for the third time in the last few years and Israel as a nation finds itself in crisis, under attack by Hamas. Over 1,500 Palestinians and Israelis have been killed. Many thousands have been injured. The Levantine Cultural Center and community partners present The Crisis This Time: Conversations on Israel/Palestine, a weekly workshop and study group that meets each Wednesday evening in August (6, 13, 20, 27), 7-9 pm at the Levantine Cultural Center to examine the news out of Israel/Palestine, discuss the war, and explore solutions—how can we, as concerned Americans, contribute to peace and justice in the region, while holding our own government accountable to the highest standards of human rights?

Speakers in the first workshop were Palestinian American physician Dr. Laila Al-Marayati, cofounder of the children's relief agency Kinder USA, and Israeli American peace activist Miko Peled, author of The General Son: Journey of an Israeli in Palestine. Peled has just returned from six weeks in Israel and the West Bank and will report back his findings. The moderator for this evening is Robin D.G. Kelley, the Gary B. Nash Endowed Chair and Distinguished Professor of U.S. History at UCLA.

Fast Forward, Talk on Arab and Iranian Typography

Event Details
Date/Time: 
Aug 28 2014 7:30pm - 9:00pm
Price: 
Free to the public, café open from 6:30
Where: 
Levantine Cultural Center
5998 W. Pico Blvd
Los Angeles CA 90035
Between La Cienega & Fairfax
Street parking
Subtitle: 
an informative talk on the evolution and future of Arabic & Iranian design

Fast Forward, Arabic & Iranian Typography: A New Visual Vocabulary in the Making

Medea Benjamin On Drones, Disrupting Business as Usual in DC

Event Details
Date/Time: 
Aug 7 2014 7:30pm - 9:30pm
Price: 
Suggested contribution $10
Where: 
The New Peace Center
3916 Sepulveda Blvd
Culver City CA 90230
free parking in rear lot, street parking
Subtitle: 
Did you know that a drone can be as small as a bumble bee?

Medea Benjamin, activist, author and cofounder of CODEPINK: Women for Peace will be introduced by Jodie Evans who will moderate a public conversation on the use of drones by federal and local governments. The LAPD is debating the drone issue, join Medea Benjamin and local community leaders to stop drones in LA.

Did you know that a drone can be as small as a bumble bee, that local law enforcement offices are eager to be the first to have their own fleet of drones here in the US and that Obama has granted the CIA the authority to kill people in Pakistan and Yemen using drone "signature strikes" based solely on suspicious behavior?

Medea Benjamin's new book Drone Warfare, Killing by Remote Control is a well-researched investigation of these deadly weapons and how we can build a movement to stop them. Come hear Medea speak. Read a review.

Presentation of 2014 Peace Prize, US Peace Memorial Foundation, by Michael D. Knox, Chair.

On display an award winning art piece inspired by CODEPINK's work to end Drone attacks in Pakistan.

Enjoy music by composer/performer Vivek Maddala.

Middle East Drum & Rhythm Circle Led by Rowan Storm

Event Details
Date/Time: 
Jun 14 2014 1:30pm - 4:00pm
Price: 
Suggested contribution for two hours is $20 (no one turned away)
Where: 
Levantine Cultural Center
5998 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles 90035
Between La Cienega and Fairfax
street parking
Subtitle: 
play doumbek, daf, riqq live informally at the Levantine café

Come participate in a dynamic Middle East rhythm and drum circle, facilitated by percussion expert Rowan Storm, Saturday from 1:30 -3:30 pm, June 14, 2014. Beginners welcome. For all ages. Family friendly. Various hand drums and percussion provided, or bring your own. Info/reservations 323.413.2001 or just show up. Grab a drum or bring your own and join the fun! Visit carpetconcert.com or rowanstorm.com.

Suggested contribution for two hours is $20.

The Tunisian Revolution: Three Years On, What Can We Learn?

Event Details
Date/Time: 
Jun 11 2014 7:30pm - 9:00pm
Price: 
free to the public, donations suggested ($10/$5)
café open from 6:30 serving Moroccan/shami food
Where: 
Levantine Cultural Center
5998 W. Pico Blvd
Los Angeles CA 90035
Between La Cienega & Fairfax
street parking
Subtitle: 
Feryal Cherif and Oussama Laifi on the new Tunisia

You are invited on Wednesday, June 11, 7:30-9:00 pm to participate in a public conversation on the revolution in Tunisia and its aftermath, with visiting Fulbright scholar Oussama Laifi and Loyola

ADC Southern California Arab Empowerment Conference

Event Details
Date/Time: 
May 31 2014 9:00am - 1:00pm
Price: 
Space is Limited. RSVP by May 28, 2014 to adcocounty@gmail.com OR call 714.641.5884.
Where: 
17521 Santiago Canyon
Silverado, CA 92676
The American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee Orange County Chapter presents the Southern California Regional Conference, "Protecting Civil Rights, Preserving Our Cultural Heritage, Promoting

Islamophobia, Analysis of the Muslim-Black Experience, Sohail Daulatzai & Asli Bali

Event Details
Date/Time: 
May 25 2014 5:00pm - 7:00pm
Price: 
Suggested donation $10/$5 students (no one turned away)
Where: 
Levantine Cultural Center
5998 W. Pico Blvd
Los Angeles CA 90035
Between La Cienega & Fairfax
street parking or at CVS underground lot
Subtitle: 
moderated by Asli Bali

Sohail Daulatzai, in a forum moderated by Asli U. Bâli, will discuss how the fears around "extremism" have impacted diverse Muslim communities (Black, Asian, Arab, etc.), and how this fear has reinvigorated the deeper criminalization of non-Muslim Black and Latino communities in the United States. He will explore the legacy of Malcolm X—the history of blackness and Islam together, the fear of what Malcolm X ushered in, and the politics he tried to put forward. He will ask what role Muslims should/could play in American politics, and the role does race plays in understanding government surveillance. 

This public forum on Islamophobia examines widespread racism and American policing and government spying. Racial and religious profiling remains a key concern in the Arab/Muslim community, while "stop and frisk" policing around the country still primary persecutes Black and Latino communities. Recent revelations of the massive surveillance apparatus of the NSA and other branches of the U.S. government have raised tremendous debate and concern around privacy and security, reinvigorating long-standing liberal notions about violations to civil liberties.

While mainstream America is concerned at the extent of government surveillance, there is very little alarm and in fact a great deal of public support for the continued surveillance of Muslim communities as a potential fifth column of "radicalization" and subversion in a post-9/11 climate. This forum is organized by LA Jews for Peace, hosted by the Levantine Cultural Center, and cosponsored by the United Methodist Holy Land Task Force and Council on American Islamic Relations-LA. Read a column by Sohail Daulatzai in The Nation.