“A room without books is like a body without a soul.” ― Marcus Tullius Cicero

The Heroine in the Bus Stairwell

The elderly Anna Kapalevitch jams her foot into the closing door of a crowded Israeli bus on a bustling Friday afternoon in the summer of 1976. The driver refuses to let her board as she defiantly stands her ground in the doorway. Following a short argument, he allows her to sit in the stairwell but forbids her to speak to him during the journey.

But Anna can’t help herself. As the bus descends from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv, she reflects on her past as an active member of a youth movement in Nazi-occupied Poland and her extraordinary role in the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. Amidst humankind’s darkest hour, when all seemed lost, something spectacular happened. The lives of Anna and the driver, as well as the passengers listening in, are dramatically altered by her story of action and hope.

The Heroine in the Bus Stairwell is a fictional novel inspired by historical facts and true stories of ghetto fighters, partisans in the forests of Poland, and holocaust survivors who lived to tell their tales. The unexpected encounter between the bus driver and his remarkable passenger is based on a true story.

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Terraem Menaha’s Discovery

“My real name is Sananda,” she said smiling. “I am like you….Menaha, there’s no easy way….You know there is something special about you that you have never understood. I think you understand what I’m saying, don’t you?”

Menaha stopped moving away from Sananda, but didn’t approach her either. “I…” she started saying, but stopped.

“There is a lot you need to learn Menaha. Your life, our lives are different from the people around us. I can explain so much that has not made sense in your life. But not here on Tertius, I mean on earth, not now. I need you to come with me so I can tell you.”

“I’m not going anywhere with you. I’m going to camp,” Menaha said coldly.

Fourteen year-old Menaha thought she was going to spend her summer at Camp Squamish – she was wrong. Instead she would be embarking on a trip to another world that would completely change her life, all previous notions of her personal identity, and even everything she believed to be the truth about her family.

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Ryan finds a twenty-dollar bill at home and takes it to school. He gloats to his friends and tells them he found it under a pickup at the bus stop. One of the girls tells the pickup’s owner and he comes out and claims the cash. Ryan, feeling intimidated, gives it to him, and when his teacher hears of his deed, returning the found money to its “owner”, he is nominated for an Integrity award at school.

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TRANCENational ALIENation

Trance Music Culture, Moral Panics and Transnational Identity in Israel

This book is the culmination of research on Trance music culture in Israel and shows that some groups of trance participants consider trance music and the raves valuable subcultural commodities and integral parts of their worldview and identity. Police actions in halting trance parties have caused trance participants to feel alienation towards both the state and national ideals. The moral panic, spearheaded by these police actions, has caused trance participants to respond by devaluing previous national identity constructions and in turn developing transnational identity attachments to the global trance community.

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