Professor Lieblich Retires as Director of School of Society and the Arts

Professor Amia Lieblich, a world renowned expert in qualitative research and narrative inquiry, recently retired from her position as Director of Ono Academic College’s School of Society and Arts, based at the Netanya Campus.  Professor Lieblich will continue to teach courses at Ono’s Kiryat Ono Campus in the coming academic year.  The entire School of Society and the Arts is slated to move to Ono’s new campus, at Savyon Junction, in June 2023. 

At a ceremony marking her contributions to the college, colleagues who have worked with Prof. Lieblich for decades spoke of her academic excellence, intelligence, modesty and eagerness to collaborate with and promote other researchers. 

In addition to the tributes and refreshments, the event featured the screening of the movie “The Orchestra of Broken Instruments” which told the story of how a musical collective in Jerusalem gathered 100 broken instruments, repaired them (to the extent possible) and prepared them for use in a one-time-only performance of a 3 movement piece scored by some of Israel’s most prominent artists: Nizar Elkhater, Maya Dunietza and Dudu Tassa. The orchestra was composed of 100 professional and amateur Jerusalem musicians who spanned the city’s diverse population groups including men and women, Jews and Arabs, religious and secular, able-bodied and disabled, new  immigrants and long-term residents, etc.  The eventual performance of the multicultural work on the broken Western (violins, trumpets) and Eastern (Oud, Kanoun) instruments succeeded in all of its goals.

Following the screening, Prof. Ariella Friedman, the outgoing Director of Ono’s B.A. program in Behavioral Sciences and a long-time collaborator and friend of Prof. Lieblich discussed how the broken instruments served as a metaphor for the members of Israeli society in general, and the college in particular.  She stressed how like the movie, the School of Society and the Arts, engages in the arts, with a diverse population and repurposes broken vessels to create beauty and knowledge which is “outside the box.”

In her concluding remarks, Prof. Lieblich thanked everyone and invited us to internalize the message of the film that beautiful sound can come out of old and broken instruments.  She fondly described her tenure heading the School of Society and the Arts and the institutions that preceded it, and the people she was privileged to work with.  She viewed the School as both a challenge and a home. Prof. Lieblich talked about one of her new edited books, “The New Enlightened” in which 11 young Ono researchers profiled Ono students who were the first in their families to seek higher education.  She noted that “a Party is not a Parting” and said that she was excited to continue teaching at Ono’s new campus.

Ono is grateful for Prof. Lieblich’s tenure and looks forward to more years working with her.