Olive Branch Pictures, Inc.
Cultural Diplomacy Using Ideologically-Balanced Storytelling
Olive Branch Pictures is a comics and animation studio for conflict mediation via a production team and advisory board selected for representation and ideological balance.
Our mission is to build trust and mutual understanding as well as mitigate hatred, violence, xenophobia, misinformation, and propaganda in intractable conflicts.
Our values are open-mindedness, empathy, and the pursuit of truth.
"An Israeli girl and a Palestinian girl learn to cope with the traumatic loss of loved-ones by escaping into the world of music. Years later their paths cross in university where, under the mentorship of their professor, they develop an intercultural benefit concert and compose 'A Song of Hope' to bring peace to Jerusalem and to themselves.”
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Our first production addresses the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict with the story “Shira and Amal”
I began this journey in culmination of volunteer experiences in the Middle East, Mexico, and India, his Jewish roots and fascination with different religions, falling in love with an Israeli peacenik in Tel Aviv, an interest in media and storytelling, diplomacy, and entrepreneurship, a love of comics and animation, and a need to create.
Theory of Change Thesis
“Mythology is not a lie, mythology is poetry, it is metaphorical. It has been well said that mythology is the penultimate truth--penultimate because the ultimate cannot be put into words. It is beyond words. Beyond images, beyond that bounding rim of the Buddhist Wheel of Becoming. Mythology pitches the mind beyond that rim, to what can be known but not told.”
― Joseph Campbell, The Power of Myth
This paper presents how ideologically balanced, representational mythology can be used to mitigate intractable conflict. I describe the influence of storytelling on human psychology. I describe the history and ability of cartoons – broadly defined to encompass caricature, editorial cartoons, comics, graphic novels, illustration, and animation, etc. – to subvert and influence society as well as mediate conflict. I describe how cultural meme theory, Carl Jung’s theory of the collective unconscious, and Joseph Campbell’s “Hero’s Journey” support the potential of inclusive myth to unite conflicting cultures. I synthesize historical and contemporary Semitic and Middle Eastern cartoons and their socio-cultural influence. Finally, I introduce my applied theory of change to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict – Olive Branch Pictures Inc, a representational, ideologically balanced comics and animation studio for conflict mediation and edutainment – describing its philosophy, mission, production methodology, business model, community development and distribution strategy, philanthropic system, social impact metrics, and ability to leverage creative tools to navigate controversy and censorship.
Watson Institute Accelerator Luff Peace Fellowship Graduation Fall 2020
Brandeis University SparkTank Competition 2019
Entrepreneurs' Organization Connecticut State Student Entrepreneurship Competition 2019
Drexel University CiRight Dragon Startup Competition 2019: Category - Business Services
Entrepreneur's Organization US National Student Entrepreneurship Awards Finalists at the Google Startup Grind Conference 2020
SoCap Scholars Program 2019
Venture Cup Denmark Startup Finalist Teams 2019
Logo Design by Don Daskalo