We’re two locally engaged but globally oriented women born after 1980 on two different continents. We met in Israel in 2011 and quickly became friends, since we share a passion for politics, policy, media, culture, and – most importantly – open and honest discussions. We felt that one of the challenges of being a young woman in Israel is that so often our voices are not heard. So we decided to start this blog (read more in detail in the “introduction“) to speak up and encourage others to speak up, too.
Now, this might seem like an oxymoron, but at the same time we decided not to use our own names. There are two reasons for this – one practical, one principle. First of all, at the moment we are both in jobs where we can’t flaunt our opinions. There are certain restrictions that come with our professional affiliation and as it were, we’d either have to stay quiet or simply speak up under a nom de plume.
The principle is more tricky. On one hand, we do feel that in a serious debate, opinions cannot be anonymous. But on the other, part of this project is not convincing you that what we think is right. It is sharing our thoughts and inviting you to react, agree, disagree and think on. It’s not about us; it’s about the ideas being discussed. And by using a made-up name, we hope to push our egos out and let the subject matter take centre (or center) stage.
On a side note, the Economist famously maintains its original layout without bylines. Read about it here. At the risk of sounding pompous – if they can do it and maintain such high standards of objectivity and insightfulness, well we will aim for the same.
So, you can’t google or facebook us (you can facebook and tweet at the blog, so please do!) But below are some details that will help you understand our cultural backgrounds. The pen-names are just that: names under which we write. We take full responsibility for our words.
Born in Europe to a family that lived much longer than could have been expected by Jews in the same country. An academic background in humanities (cultural studies and communication), currently working in communications in an international non-profit. Religious and very chill.
Israeli-born, California-raised, to European and Israeli parents, continued the stereotype of the Wandering Jew by moving back to Israel a few years ago. A background in international relations, currently working with social media and communications in an international business. Secular and very chill.
Sophia means “wisdom” in Greek, and Vera “truth” in Latin. We strive to live up to these hallmarks of informed conversation.