Our Jewish past is a deep pit covered with fragile wrapping, and if once our goal was to deny the existence of this pit, and to hide its terribleness from young, readers, today this tendency is reversed. In my book The Heart That Sought and the Heart That Found, (Winner of the Yad Vashem Prize, 2001), I describe a high school student who goes to Europe on her summer vacation to places where a relative had fought the Germans as a partisan in World War II, and she returns a completely different person. From a lighthearted girl she became aware of the history of her family and her people, and the determination of the partisan relative is passed along to her.
In my books Friendship Tested and The Hour of the Test I bring meetings between Jews and Arabs, while noting the problems and the dangers that are a part of these engagements. The personal acquaintance, the information, the confrontation, allow readers (11 and over) to crystalize their own thinking and attitudes, and hopefully prevent confusion and fear.
Dorit Orgad was born in Germany and came to Israel as a child. She has a doctorate in Jewish philosophy and has written dozens of books.