Arab Evangelicals in Israel: Identity in Conflict

27 January 2021, 16:00 - 27 January 2021, 17:30 Webinar - please register


Dr Anna Kirchner, Heidelberg University, Germany

Arab Evangelicals in Israel are often seen as “a minority within a minority within a minority” (as Arabs, Christians, Evangelicals). This perception leads to two main assumptions, which this paper seeks to challenge. Firstly, there is a tendency to attribute fixed and stable identities to such a minority group, which, however, tends to ignore the historical context and the hybridity of these identity categories. Secondly, there is a tendency of viewing such minority groups as insignificant for research into the religio-political dynamics of the region. Yet, this not only fails to recognize the political agency of Arab Evangelicals, but it also misses important insights about religious and national identity in Israel, which become apparent when studying this group. The paper is based on fieldwork on Arab Evangelicals in Nazareth and will introduce basic identity conflicts while contextualizing them historically and illustrating them with some case studies.


Dr Anna Kirchner has completed her doctoral thesis on Arab Evangelicals in Israel in 2020 at the Department of Religious Studies and Intercultural Theology at the University ofHeidelberg (Germany). Her thesis is due to be published in the summer of 2021. She is currently completing her training as a pastor in Germany while also preparing a post-doc project on Sufism in 19th century Egypt.