Lee and Bernard Jaffe Family Jewish Book Festival

Thursday, Feb 25, 2021 at 12:00pm

Virginia Beach, VA 23450

Please call before attending any community events. It is likely that they will be postponed or canceled as a result of the coronavirus. You can find CDC coronavirus information at cdc.gov/coronavirus; AARP has additional resources at aarp.org/coronavirus.

United Jewish Federation of Tidewater and the Simon Family JCC’s Lee and Bernard Jaffe Family Jewish Book Festival 2020-2021.

Held in coordination with the Jewish Book Council, a national organization whose sole purpose is the promotion of Jewish books, the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater and the Simon Family JCC’s Lee and Bernard Jaffe Family Jewish Book Festival is the annual celebration of Jewish writers, books, and ideas.


12:00pm: Words of My Father: Love and Pain in Palestine with author Yousef Bashir

The Words of My Father: Love and Pain in Palestine

With Author Yousef Bashir

Yousef Bashir’s story begins in Gaza, on a verdant ten-acre farm beside an Israeli settlement and military base. When the soccer-mad Yousef was eleven, the Second Intifada exploded. Ordered to leave their family home, Yousef’s father refused, even when the Israeli soldiers moved in, seizing the top two floors. Despite this, Yousef’s father—a respected Palestinian schoolteacher whose belief in coexisting peacefully with his Israeli neighbors was unshakeable—treated the soldiers as honored guests. His commitment to peace was absolute. At fifteen, while standing in his front yard with his father and three United Nations observers, Yousef was shot in the spine by an Israeli soldier, leaving him in a wheelchair, paralyzed from the waist down for a year.

While an Israeli soldier shot him, it was Israeli doctors who saved Yousef and helped him eventually learn to walk again. In the wake of that experience, Yousef was forced to reckon with the words of his father. And like the generous, empathetic man who raised him, he too became an outspoken activist for peace. Bashir's story and the ideals of peace and empathy it upholds are a soothing balm for these dangerous and troubled times, and a reminder that love and compassion are a gift—and a choice.

Yousef Bashir is a Pales­tin­ian Amer­i­can from the Gaza Strip who made his way to the Unit­ed States, where he earned a BA in inter­na­tion­al affairs from North­east­ern Uni­ver­si­ty and an MA in co-exis­tence and con­flict from Bran­deis Uni­ver­si­ty. Now liv­ing in Wash­ing­ton, DC, Bashir has worked on Capi­tol Hill, and served as a mem­ber of the Pales­tin­ian Diplo­mat­ic Del­e­ga­tion to the Unit­ed States. Yousef is an accom­plished author, a vig­or­ous advo­cate of Israeli-Pales­tin­ian peace, and a much sought-after pub­lic speaker.

Via Zoom
Pre-registration required. 


This event listing provided for the Virginia Beach community events calendar. Community events are not associated with or sponsored by AARP, but may be of interest to you. If you have an event to share, let us know!

Images provided by AmericanTowns.com, Ticketmaster

More from AARP in Virginia Beach

Upcoming AARP Events

View All AARP Events »

Find information about getting a COVID-19 vaccine in your state. CDC information is available at cdc.gov/coronavirus; additional AARP information and resources are at aarp.org/coronavirus. En español, visite aarp.org/elcoronavirus.

AARP Member Card

Join or Renew Today


  • Immediate access to your member benefits
  • Discounts on travel and everyday savings
  • Subscription to the award-winning AARP The Magazine
  • An ally on the issues that matter most to you in Virginia Beach
  • Free membership for your spouse or partner