Moran Zer Katzenstein
מורן זר קצנשטיין
13 August 1982
|Known for||Social activism|
Moran Zer Katzenstein (Hebrew: מורן זר קצנשטיין; born 13 August 1982) is an Israeli women's rights activist, lecturer, social activist, strategist and media personality. She is among the initiators of the coalition of women's organizations and founder of "Bonot Alternativa" (Women Building an Alternative; Hebrew: בונות אלטרנטיבה), an organization which has been at the forefront of the ongoing judicial reform protests held across Israel.
She grew up in a religious household but attended a secular school. Zer Katzenstein was active in the Bnei Akiva youth movement. She completed her studies at Katzir highschool in Holon where she studied media & communication. During her IDF military service, Zer Katzenstein served as a human resources officer and was honorably discharged with the rank of lieutenant.
After her army service, she went on to pursue her bachelor's degree in communication and management at the college of management and in conjunction served in an operational role in the Shin Bet. She completed her degree in 2007. She went on to complete her master's degree in business administration in 2010 at the same college.
Between 2015 and 2017, Zer Katzenstein was a marketing lecturer at the college of administration.
Beginning in 2023, she serves full-time and voluntarily as the leader of the women's movement "Bonot Alternativa" (Women Building an Alternative).
Women Building an Alternative
While vacationing in Eilat with her family, she became aware of a gang raping incident that had taken place. Zer Katzenstein decided to initiate protests "in response to the rape and the lawlessness with which women are being treated in Israel". She founded "Bonot Alternativa" (Women Building an Alternative) in 2020, through the unionization of business women, entrepreneurs, CEOs, media personalities, social activists, and heads of women's organizations. In 2023, Bonot Alternativa became an official association.
Activism against judicial reform
In 2023, as part of the 2023 Israeli judicial reform protests, Bonot Alternativa, under her leadership, initiated the "Handmaids' Protest" which drew inspiration from Margaret Atwood's novel, The Handmaid's Tale and also the TV series The Handmaid's Tale which is based on it. The exhibition included hundreds of women throughout Israel silently marching in red cloaks. The handmaids became the symbol of the protests against judicial reform and brought the movement led by Zer Katzenstein to the forefront of the struggle, while Zer Katzenstein serves as a frequent speaker at rallies across the country.
On the morning of 29 June 2023, Zer Katzenstein was detained for questioning by police during a protest near the home of the Minister for the Advancement of the Status of Women, May Golan. According to Zer Katzenstein, the Minister is "single-handedly hurting the ongoing struggle for women's rights in Israel". Zer Katzenstein was released shortly afterward.
Zer Katzenstein is a married mother of three and lives in central Israel.
- Rabin, Roni Caryn (12 August 2023). "Growing Segregation by Sex in Israel Raises Fears for Women's Rights". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 18 August 2023. Retrieved 18 August 2023.
- Dawson, Bethany (19 March 2023). "Israel's 'Handmaids' become a defining image of the mass protests against Netanyahu's judicial reforms". Business Insider. Archived from the original on 26 June 2023. Retrieved 26 June 2023.
- Ben Ari, Dalia (2 March 2023). "From Bnei Akiva to the Shin Bet, from Google to the Handmaid's Red Cloak: Moran Zer Katzenstein's Path to the Forefront of the Protests". At Magazine (in Hebrew). Archived from the original on 3 May 2023. Retrieved 25 June 2023.
- Zer Katzenstein, Moran (9 April 2023). "When I Was In "Bnei Akiva", There Was No Seperation Between Boys and Girls as There Is Today" (in Hebrew). Haaretz. Archived from the original on 9 April 2023. Retrieved 25 June 2023.
- "Moran Zer Katzenstein" (in Hebrew). Globes. 5 November 2020. Archived from the original on 1 September 2023. Retrieved 1 September 2023.
- Nomberg Yunger, Efrat (4 May 2020). "What Do You Do When Your Girl Wants Youtube?" (in Hebrew). Mako. Archived from the original on 17 May 2023. Retrieved 25 June 2023.
- Dover, Shiri (23 August 2021). ""When I was confined at home due to Corona, I stopped having idle meetings, and work became more efficient"". Globes (in Hebrew). Archived from the original on 1 September 2023. Retrieved 1 September 2023.
- "Moran Zer Katzenstein: I Am Proud To Take Part in the "Medabrot Project"" (in Hebrew). Globes. 5 November 2020. Archived from the original on 7 May 2023. Retrieved 25 June 2023.
- Kropsky, Sefi (2 September 2021). "A Year Has Passed: This Is How We Formed The Massive Women's Protest". Time Out Magazine (in Hebrew). Archived from the original on 25 June 2023. Retrieved 25 June 2023.
- Steinbuch, Yaron (24 August 2020). "Seven more suspects arrested in alleged gang rape of teen girl in Israel". New York Post. Archived from the original on 26 June 2023. Retrieved 26 June 2023.
- Hadar, Tomer (5 March 2023). "When A Women Shouts, The Message Is Heard" (in Hebrew). Calcalist. Archived from the original on 15 July 2023. Retrieved 25 June 2023.
- Lechter, Efrat (24 March 2023). "The Cloaks Are Not From Ali Express and Not From the Iranians: Leader of The Handmaids' Marches Speaks Out and Reveals Who's Funding Her" (in Hebrew). N12. Archived from the original on 1 May 2023. Retrieved 25 June 2023.
- Sharvit Barzilai, Shlomit (29 January 2023). "It's Not a Judicial Reform, It's a Coup and We Women Are Going to Be the First to Get Hurt". Ynet (in Hebrew). Archived from the original on 20 April 2023. Retrieved 25 June 2023.
- Bechor Nir, Diana; Libsker, Ari; Dori, Roni. "The Protest And Me: A Journey Through The Various Protest Initiatives of Israelis Who Decided to Wake Up" (in Hebrew). Calcalist. Archived from the original on 24 July 2023. Retrieved 25 June 2023.
- Gil-Ad, Hadar; Eichner, Itamar; Levy, Liran (29 June 2023). "Founder of "Bonot Alternativa" Detained for Questioning At a Protest Near the Home of Minister May Golan". Ynet (in Hebrew). Archived from the original on 29 June 2023. Retrieved 29 June 2023.
- on YouTube
- Moran Zer Katzenstein on Twitter
- on YouTube
- Spiro, James (7 March 2023). "Meet the woman leading the Handmaid's Tale protests across Israel". Calcalist. Retrieved 26 June 2023.
- "Founder of group behind Handmaid protests: Women are realizing danger of the overhaul". The Times of Israel. 25 March 2023. Retrieved 26 June 2023.
- Slyomovics, Netanel; Kaplan Sommer, Allison; Kraft, Dina (5 March 2023). "Voices of the Protesters: Meet the Israelis Protecting Democracy Against Netanyahu's Constitutional Coup". Haaretz. Retrieved 26 June 2023.
- MARGIT, MAYA; GANOT, STEVE (15 January 2023). "50 women's groups form new coalition in response to Netanyahu gov't". The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 26 June 2023.
- SCHARF, ISAAC; GOLDENBERG, TIA (17 March 2023). "In Israel, TV's dystopian 'Handmaids' is protest fixture". Associated Press. Retrieved 26 June 2023.