- Recent Publications
Dreams Deferred: A Concise Guide to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and the Movement to Boycott Israel, by Cary Nelson. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2016. 400 pages. $12. Dreams Deferred takes on the task of acting as a general analytical resource pertaining to the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions Movement (BDS) and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as a whole. Cary Nelson also seeks to examine the concept of Zionism, highlighting the merits of a progressive Zionism. Along with an array of contributors, Nelson tackles 60 major issues concerning the conflict, condensing them into clear and concise essays that, as a collection, create a logical and intricate link of events, concepts, phenomena, and ideologies that give the reader an inclusive picture of the conflict’s dynamics today. Some of the topics covered include BDS on college campuses, the portrayal of Israelis as Nazis, Jewish anti-Zionist movements, Jewish settlements in the Occupied Territories, and “pinkwashing.” Although the authors work according to a framework that is favorable to a two-state solution and critical of the fundamentals and attitudes behind the BDS movement, Dreams Deferred offers a variety of perspectives and opportunities for debate. (HSH)
A Path to Peace: A Brief History of Israeli-Palestinian Negotiations and a Way Forward in the MIddle East, by George J. Mitchell and Alon Sachar. New York: Simon and Schuster, 2016. 192 pages. $26. George Mitchell and Alon Sachar’s new book, A Path to Peace, analyzes recent events and negotiation attempts in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and offers wisdom in addressing the conflict’s final status issues. Former US senator George Mitchell — who was appointed by President Bill Clinton to lead a fact-finding commission about the conflict and served as Special Envoy for Middle East Peace under President Barack Obama — shares insights and anecdotes from his experiences working on the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. Mitchell and Sachar, who as a diplomat in his own right advised Mitchell as Special Envoy, probe and explain the attitudes and actions of Israeli and Palestinian leaders and civilians, drawing from statistics, interviews, speeches, and personal experience. Additionally, they discuss varying theories and approaches to solving the conflict, including the arguments for and against one-state and two-state solutions. They conclude by addressing each final status issue with possible solutions to work toward, placing responsibilities on the Israeli and US governments, and the Palestinian Authority. (HSH)
Digital Jihad: Palestinian Resistance in the Digital Era, by Erik Skare. London: Zed Books, 2016. 300 pages. $24.95. In Digital Jihad, Erik Skare delves into the unexamined world of Palestinian “hacktivism,” referring to the myriad ways activists use the Internet to infiltrate websites, leak documents, and breach security systems. Skare explores hacktivism’s role and efficacy in the greater context of Palestinian resistance to Israeli occupation. Editor of the Norwegian Palestinian solidarity page Infofada, Skare writes of the origins of Palestinian “digital resistance,” placing these in historical context of the conflict and analyzing how the power dynamics of the occupation have affected Palestinian technical and cyber-development. Additionally, Digital Jihad seeks to explain the strategies and ideologies of different hacktivist organizations and to understand the discourse within the resistance movement regarding the effectiveness and validity of hacktivism. Skare argues that the role and impact of hacktivism is in generating and sharing the resistance narrative through overriding control of digital spaces and in doing so, transforming those spaces. (HSH)
Egypt: Contested Revolution, by Philip Marfleet. London: Pluto Press, 2016. 240 pages, $28. In Egypt: Contested Revolution, Philip Marfleet examines the revolutionary and counterrevolutionary events that have overcome Egypt since 2011. In this comprehensive narrative, Marfleet analyzes the nature, implications, and major players of the revolutionary movement and its political, generational, and socioeconomic composition, emphasizing the massive turnout of people that previously had been refused a role in the political arena. He takes into account historical context for the dynamics present in the movements, such as the history of the Muslim Brotherhood and its relationship with leftist movements in Egypt. Marfleet deduces that these movements carry potential and that future political change is a certainty. Egypt gathers and examines academic and journalistic works, as well as interviews with...