Volume 21, Number 1, Spring 2016
Table of Contents
Representations of Israeli-Jewish — Israeli-Palestinian Memory and Historical Narratives of the 1948 War
Edited by Avraham Sela and Alon Kadish
Preface and Acknowledgements
Israeli and Palestinian Memories and Historical Narratives of the 1948 War—An Overview
Avraham Sela, Avraham Kadish
The 1948 Palestine War on the Small Screen: A Comparative Analysis of its Representation in Two Israeli Television Series
Israel’s Publications Agency and the 1948 Palestinian Refugees
The War of Independence Exhibited: A Study of Three Israeli Museums
Contested Urban Memoryscape Strategies and Tactics in Post-1948 Haifa
The Making of a Myth: The Story of Kfar Etzion in Religious Zionism 1948–1967
Descending the Khazooq: “Working Through” the Trauma of the Nakba in Emile Habibi’s Oeuvre
Wa-ma Nasayna (We Have Not Forgotten): Palestinian Collective Memory and the Print Work of Abed Abdi
New Article: Sela, The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and Israel’s National Photography Archives
Sela, Rona. “Rethinking National Archives in Colonial Countries and Zones of Conflict: The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and Israel’s National Photography Archives as a Case Study.” In Dissonant Archives: Contemporary Visual Culture and Competing Narratives in the Middle East (ed. Anthony Downey; London: Tauris, 2015), 79-91.
My research over the years has dealt with the question of tyranny that characterizes the activities of Israel’s national institutional photography archives. I discussed the power relations that shaped them and the significant role they played in determining the perception and writing of history. Derrida points to violence as one of the main features inherent in the archive, embodying governmental information/power relations. These aggressive relationships are intensified in a country where two peoples—occupiers and occupied—live in a national conflict and are present, for example, in the way institutional archives control both the national treasures of the vanquished and the knowledge of their history and culture. Pointing out the overt and covert mechanisms in these national institutional archives by stripping away and exposing their inherent national bias, lays the foundation for building an alternative, layered database, different from the one-sided worldview that characterizes them. This enables the original purpose of the archives to be undermined and, in the words of McEvan, put through a process of democratization. However, while in South Africa civil organizations and government are aware of the importance of establishing post-colonial (post-apartheid) archives, in Israel the situation is different. Although in recent years additional studies have started to breach this national cover, exposing excluded areas of knowledge and research, in Israel they still exist on the margins and there is ample room to read archives in a way that penetrates their façade of physical violence.
It is also necessary to deconstruct the archive’s structure, and to propose alternative mechanisms of reading, interpretation and criticism in addition to those discussed in this essay.
The voice of the subjugated is not entirely absent from national, insti-tutional archives in Israel, but exists in an emasculated and misleading form. In this essay, I wanted to raise the possibility of hearing these voices that are seemingly missing from the archives. Freeing the national archives from their chains, and the construction of an independent memory and history—by challenging the national database and providing a platform for Palestinian voices and the return of their looted and seized materials—are the first steps in establishing alternative national archives in Israel. However, stripping away their outer-wrapping does not replace the importance of hearing the voices of the oppressed, learning their history and restoring their ownership and rights.
New Article: Cox, Britain and the Origin of Israeli Special Operations
Cox, Stephen Russell. “Britain and the Origin of Israeli Special Operations: SOE and PALMACH during the Second World War.” Dynamics of Asymmetric Conflict 8.1 (2015): 60-78.
This article explores the British influence on the origins of Israeli Special Operations and elite units before and during the Second World War. Specifically, it brings to light the roles Captain (later Major-General) Orde Wingate and the British Special Operations Executive played in the creation of the Special Night Squads and the PALMACH, respectively. It concludes with an examination of the consequences of this military and philosophical influence for the British in Palestine and for the creation of the state of Israel. The primary source material for this article comes principally from Wingate’s personal papers at the Imperial War Museum and the SOE’s declassified documents in the National Archives, both in London.
New Book: Fuchs, Israeli Feminist Scholarship
Fuchs, Esther, ed. Israeli Feminist Scholarship. Gender, Zionism, and Difference. Austin, TX : University of Texas Press, 2014.
More than a dozen scholars give voice to cutting-edge postcolonial trends (from ecofeminism to gender identity in family life) that question traditional approaches to Zionism while highlighting nationalism as the core issue of Israeli feminist scholarship today.
Table of Contents
Introduction. Israeli Feminist Scholarship: Gender, Zionism, and Difference
Chapter One. The Evolution of Critical Paradigms in Israeli Feminist Scholarship: A Theoretical Model
Chapter Two. Politicizing Masculinities: Shahada and Haganah
Sheila H. Katz
Chapter Three. The Double or Multiple Image of the New Hebrew Woman
Chapter Four. The Heroism of Hannah Senesz: An Exercise in Creating Collective National Memory in the State of Israel
Judith T. Baumel
Chapter Five. The Feminisation of Stigma in the Relationship Between Israelis and Shoah Survivors
Chapter Six. Gendering Military Service in the Israel Defense Forces
Dafna N. Izraeli
Chapter Seven. The Halachic Trap: Marriage and Family Life
Chapter Eight. Motherhood as a National Mission: The Construction of Womanhood in the Legal Discourse in Israel
Chapter Nine. No Home at Home: Women’s Fiction vs. Zionist Practice
Chapter Ten. Wasteland Revisited: An Ecofeminist Strategy
Chapter Eleven. Tensions in Israeli Feminism: The Mizrahi-Ashkenazi Rift
Chapter Twelve. Scholarship, Identity, and Power: Mizrahi Women in Israel
Chapter Thirteen. Reexamining Femicide: Breaking the Silence and Crossing “Scientific” Borders
Chapter Fourteen. The Construction of Lesbianism as Nonissue in Israel
Chapter Fifteen. From Gender to Genders: Feminists Read Women’s Locations in Israeli Society
Purchase from publisher: https://utpress.utexas.edu/index.php/books/fucisr
Cite: Ben-Dror, The United Nations Plan to Establish an Armed Jewish Force
Ben-Dror, Elad. “The United Nations Plan to Establish an Armed Jewish Force to Implement the Partition Plan (United Nations Resolution 181).” Diplomacy & Statecraft 24.4 (2013): 559-78.
On 29 November 1947, the United Nations General Assembly voted to partition Palestine into two independent states, Jewish and Arab, with Jerusalem as a corpus separatum under international control. The General Assembly then established the United Nations Palestine Commission to implement partition. Amongst other things, the Commission was to establish “armed militias” under UN supervision to help realise the plan. The analysis examines various aspects of the sequence of events related to this idea, from its conception in the General Assembly to its death in February 1948. It demonstrates that under the militia clause, the United Nations intended to rely on the Jews’ main military organisation – the Haganah – to establish the Jewish state and shows how and why this plan went awry despite the converging interests of the Jews and the United Nations.
Reviews: Pedahzur and Perliger, Jewish Terrorism in Israel
Pedahzur, Ami and Arie Perliger. Jewish Terrorism in Israel. New York: Columbia University Press, 2009.
- Brown, L. Carl. “Review.” Foreign Affairs, January/February 2010.
- Rubner, Michael. “Book Review.” Middle East Policy 17.2 (2010).
- Rubenberg, Cheryl A. “Review.” Middle East Book Reads, September 15, 2010.
- Torstrick, Rebecca L. “Violence in the Name of God.” H-Net Reviews, March 2011.
- Cohen-Almagor, Raphael. “Review.” Terrorism and Political Violence 25.3 (2013): 501-503.
Cite: Penkower, Jabotinsky, Bergson, and the Campaign for a Jewish Army
Penkower, Monty Noam. "Vladimir (Ze’ev) Jabotinsky, Hillel Kook-Peter Bergson, and the Campaign for a Jewish Army.” Modern Judaism 31.3 (2011): 332-374.
On the morning of September 20, 1923, the Jewish Day of Atonement, a small ship was approaching the port town of Jaffa on the shore of Palestine. The ship, which had sailed from Alexandria, carried on its deck two young German-Jewish scholars who were to become—each in his own field—renowned personalities in the history of Jewish Studies in the 20th century. The first, the orientalist Shlomo Dov Goitein, continued sailing with the ship until its next station—the port of Haifa. The second, Gershom Scholem, who was welcomed on shore by his fiancé Escha Burchhardt, disembarked from the ship and arrived for the first time, as a Zionist, at his destination, where he stayed for the rest of his life. In his memoir Scholem describes the process of adaptation and integration in the new land as an easy one from the personal, social, and ideological point of view.1 Nonetheless, on many occasions, he expressed discontentment with the local Jewish life, complaining about the cultural and political situation in Jerusalem.2 The reasons for this discontent varied but they were mainly connected to the political developments in Palestine, to the direction that the Yishuv took, and to the dramatic events in Europe in the 1930s and 1940s. This article concentrates on three important moments in the history of Zionism as well as in Scholem’s private life: first, the riots of 1929 and their aftermath; second, the realization of the destruction of European Jewry by the Yishuv in Palestine in 1943; and third, the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948. Each of these events represents a turning point for the Jewish collective, as well as a turning point for Scholem as a private person on the way in the process of fulfilling his Zionist utopia.