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Boundaries and Frontiers
This book provides a unique mosaic of the most recent processes and phenomena which explains Israel factually as well as theoretically. It offers a new conceptual framework for analysing the relationships between state and society, contrasting social boundaries with social frontiers. It also discusses the problems that arise when Zionist ideology confronts reality in contemporary Israel.
In his courageous book, Israel's Dead Soul, Steven Salaita explores the failures of Zionism as a political and ethical discourse. He argues that endowing nation-states with souls is a dangerous phenomenon because it privileges institutions and corporations rather than human beings.
Asserting that Zionism has been normalized--rendered "benign" as an ideology of "multicultural conviviality"—Salaita critiques the idea that Zionism, as an exceptional ideology, leads to a lack of critical awareness of the effects of the Israeli occupation in Palestinian territory and to an unquestioning acceptance of Israel as an ethnocentric state.
Salaita's analysis targets the Anti-Defamation League, films such as Munich and Waltz with Bashir, intellectuals including Cornel West and Michael Eric Dyson, gay rights activists, and other public figures who mourn the decline of Israel's "soul." His pointed account shows how liberal notions of Zionism are harmful to various movements for justice.
Casualty Aversion in a Militarized Democracy
Portrait of the City in the Second Temple Period (538 B.C.E. – 70 C.E.)
Jerusalem in the Second Temple period experienced dramatic growth as it achieved unprecedented political, religious, and spiritual prominence. Lee Levine traces the development of Jerusalem during this time -- through its urban, demographic, topographical, and archaeological features, its political regimes, public institutions, and its cultural and religious life.
With only a small remnant of Jews still living in the Maghrib at the beginning of the 21st century, the vast majority of today's inhabitants of North Africa have never met a Jew. Yet as this volume reveals, Jews were an integral part of the North African landscape from antiquity. Scholars from Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Israel, and the United States shed new light on Jewish life and Muslim-Jewish relations in North Africa through the lenses of history, anthropology, language, and literature. The history and life stories told in this book illuminate the close cultural affinities and poignant relationships between Muslims and Jews, and the uneasy coexistence that both united and divided them throughout the history of the Maghrib.
The Other Side of Tolerance
Turkey is famed for a history of tolerance toward minorities, and there is a growing nostalgia for the "Ottoman mosaic." In this richly detailed study, Marcy Brink-Danan examines what it means for Jews to live as a tolerated minority in contemporary Istanbul. Often portrayed as the "good minority," Jews in Turkey celebrate their long history in the region, yet they are subject to discrimination and their institutions are regularly threatened and periodically attacked. Brink-Danan explores the contradictions and gaps in the popular ideology of Turkey as a land of tolerance, describing how Turkish Jews manage the tensions between cosmopolitanism and patriotism, difference as Jews and sameness as Turkish citizens, tolerance and violence.
Life History, Politics, and Culture
This fascinating interdisciplinary collection of essays brings gender issues to the foreground in order to redress a profound imbalance in the historiography of the Yishuv, the Jewish community in Palestine, and in the early years of the State of Israel. Although male discourse still dominates this field, some initial studies have begun to create an authentic and multifaceted Hebrew-Israeli voice by examining the activities and contributions of women.
This research has led to a number of basic questions: What was the reality of life for women in Jewish society in Ottoman and Mandatory Palestine (Eretz Israel), and in the early years of the State? What was the contribution of women to the renewal of Israeli society and culture? What is the place of gender perceptions in the study of the new local identity? The original articles in this anthology forge an innovative response to one or more of these questions, and reflecting the state of research in the field.
Responses to the Guttman Report
Analyzes a recent report on a survey of the religious beliefs and behavior of Israeli Jews, and of the intense public debate that it produced. In December 1993, the Louis Guttman Israel Institute of Applied Social Research released the results of the most comprehensive study ever undertaken of the religious beliefs and behavior of Israeli Jews. The study revealed that Israeli Jews were far more traditional in their religious beliefs and behavior than previously thought, resulting in an intense public debate within Israeli society. This book summarizes the Guttman Report and describes how the media and Israeli intellectuals responded to it and imposed their own interpretations. It then analyzes the report in greater detail and puts in global perspective Israeli Jews’ ritual behavior, religious beliefs, and attitudes toward religion in public life. The editors conclude that the religious traditionalism of Israeli Jews is unique among advanced industrial societies. They seek to explain this uniqueness in terms of the particular nature of Israeli society, focusing on Israel’s security problems and suggesting the impact that a new security situation would have on Israeli Jews and how it would reshape the Israeli political map.
This innovative study examines the responses of early-twentieth-century pioneers to "the Land" of Palestine. Early Zionist historiography portrayed these young settlers as heroic; later, more critical studies by the "new" historians and sociologists focused on their failures and shortcomings. Neumann argues for something else that historians have yet to identify--desire. Desire for the Land and a visceral identification with it begin to explain the pioneer experience and its impact on Israeli history and collective memory, as well as on Israelis' abiding connection to the Land of Israel. His close readings of archival documents, memoirs, diaries, poetry, and prose of the period develop new understandings--many of them utterly surprising--of the Zionist enterprise. For Neumann, the Zionist revolution was an existential revolution: for the pioneers, to be in the Land of Israel was to be!