New Book: Hever, Suddenly the Sight of War

Hever, Hannan. Suddenly, the Sight of War. Violence and Nationalism in Hebrew Poetry in the 1940s. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2016.

 Hever

Suddenly, the Sight of War is a genealogy of Hebrew poetry written in pre-state Israel between the beginning of World War II and the War of Independence in 1948. In it, renowned literary scholar Hannan Hever sheds light on how the views and poetic practices of poets changed as they became aware of the extreme violence in Europe toward the Jews.

In dealing with the difficult topics of the Shoah, Natan Alterman’s 1944 publication of The Poems of the Ten Plagues proved pivotal. His work inspired the next generation of poets like Haim Guri, as well as detractors like Amir Gilboa. Suddenly, the Sight of War also explores the relations between the poetry of the struggle for national independence and the genre of war-reportage, uniquely prevalent at the time. Hever concludes his genealogy with a focus on the feminine reaction to the War of Independence showing how women writers such as Lea Goldberg and Yocheved Bat-Miryam subverted war poetry at the end of the 1940s. Through the work of these remarkable poets, we learn how a culture transcended seemingly unspeakable violence.

 

Table of Contents

Part I: Hebrew Symbolist Poetry During World War II
1. “The Real Has Become a Symbol”
2. The Dispute over War Poetry
3. Criticism of Nationalism Violence
4. Reading Nationalist Poetry Critically
5. Nationalism Anthologized
6. The Living-Dead in Joy of the Poor
7. Revence on a Nationalist Scale
8. Leah Goldberg Writes War Poetry
9. The Duality of the Symbolist Woman Poet
10. The Living-Dead and the Female Body
11. Amir Gilboa: Boy Poet

Part II: Historical Analogy and National Allegory During the Holocaust
12. A Surprising Moral Judgment
13. The Uncommon Stance of a Major Poet
14. Critical Reception
15. A Postnationalist Reading
16. A Symbol, Not an Allegory
17. Allegory in The Poems of the Plagues of Egypt versus Symbolism in Joy of the Poor
18. Allegory as a Nonhegemonic Stance
19. Alterman and the Memory of the Holocaust
20. The Father-Son Strategy
21. Blind Vengeance
22. Breaking the Cycle of Crime and Punishment
23. History of the Defeated

Part III: Symbols of Death in the National War for Independence
26. Return of the Hegemonic Symbol
27. The Living-Dead in the Independence War
28. Amir Gilboa and the Subversion of the Symbol
29. Gilboa versus the Metaphor of the Living-Dead
30. Poets as Reporters
31. Sorrow Petrified into Symbols
32. Hegemonic Strategies
33. From Reportage to Lyric
34. Women Write of Fallen Soldiers as Flesh and Blood
35. In the Service of National Subjectivity
36. Women and the Metaphor of the Living-Dead
37. Criticism of the Living-Dead Metaphor
38. The Authority and Power of Women
39. Popular versus Canonical Mourning
40. The Secrets and Power of Women

Conclusion
Index

 

HANNAN HEVER is the Jacob and Hilda Blaustein Professor of Hebrew Language and Literature at Yale University. He is the author of several books, including Producing the Modern Hebrew Canon.

 

 

 

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ToC: Journal of Israeli History 34.2 (2015)

Journal of Israeli History, 34.2 (2015)

No Trinity: The tripartite relations between Agudat Yisrael, the Mizrahi movement, and the Zionist Organization
Daniel Mahla
pages 117-140

Judaism and communism: Hanukkah, Passover, and the Jewish Communists in Mandate Palestine and Israel, 1919–1965
Amir Locker-Biletzki
pages 141-158

Olei Hagardom: Between official and popular memory
Amir Goldstein
pages 159-180

Practices of photography on kibbutz: The case of Eliezer Sklarz
Edna Barromi Perlman
pages 181-203

The Shishakli assault on the Syrian Druze and the Israeli response, January–February 1954
Randall S. Geller
pages 205-220

Book Reviews

Editorial Board

New Article: Locker-Biletzki, Hanukkah, Passover, and the Jewish Communists

Locker-Biletzki, Amir. “Judaism and Communism: Hanukkah, Passover, and the Jewish Communists in Mandate Palestine and Israel, 1919–1965.” Journal of Israeli History (early view; online first).

 

URL: https://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13531042.2015.1068971

 

Abstract
This article explores the mythological, ritualistic, and symbolic aspects of the ways in which the festivals of Hanukkah and Passover were celebrated by the Jewish Communists in Mandate Palestine and the State of Israel. It illustrates how elements of Zionist-socialist culture were adopted by Jewish Communists and integrated in their cultural activities. In a gradual process starting in the1920s and culminating in the mid-1960s, the Jewish Communists created a combination of Marxist ideology and Zionist-socialist cultural practices. However, when a group of young Sabra activists reinforced the Zionist-socialist elements, the balance was undermined, contributing to the rift within Israeli communism.

 

 

ToC: Israel Affairs 20,2 (2014): Special Issue, Politics and Poetry

Israel Affairs 20,2 (2014)

Special Issue: Politics and Poetry in Israel

http://www.tandfonline.com/toc/fisa20/20/2

 

Articles

Poetry and poets in the public sphere

Assaf Meydani & Nadir Tsur; pages 141-160

  • DOI:10.1080/13537121.2014.889889
  • Published online: 01 Apr 2014

The leader as a poet: the political and ideological poetry of Ze’ev Jabotinsky

Arye Naor; pages 161-181

  • DOI:10.1080/13537121.2014.889890
  • Published online: 22 May 2014

The image of the ‘living-dead’ in Nathan Alterman’s poetry: from archetype to national symbol

Ortsion Bartana; pages 182-194

  • DOI:10.1080/13537121.2014.889886
  • Published online: 29 May 2014

The art of politics and poetry: the political poetry of Jacques Prevert and Aryeh Sivan

Samuel (Muli) Peleg; pages 195-213

  • DOI:10.1080/13537121.2014.889892
  • Published online: 07 May 2014

Hegemony inside and out: Nathan Alterman and the Israeli Arabs

Yochai Oppenheimer; pages 214-225

  • DOI:10.1080/13537121.2014.889891
  • Published online: 04 Apr 2014

‘Silent in white ink’: the motif of silence in Israeli-Palestinian women’s poetry translated from Arabic to Hebrew

Leah Baratz & Roni Reingold; pages 226-239

  • DOI:10.1080/13537121.2014.889885
  • Published online: 16 Apr 2014

Politics and poetry in the works of Shalom Shabazī

Yosef Tobi; pages 240-255

  • DOI:10.1080/13537121.2014.889893
  • Published online: 14 Apr 2014

Why did poetry and piyut disappear from the religious-Zionist High Holy Day prayer book, and what prompted their return?

Shimon Fogel; pages 256-270

  • DOI:10.1080/13537121.2014.889887
  • Published online: 04 Apr 2014

An Israeli Bob Dylan is yet to be born: the politics of Israeli protest music

Yitzhak Katz; pages 271-279

  • DOI:10.1080/13537121.2014.889888
  • Published online: 26 Mar 2014

ToC: Journal of Israeli History 31.2 (2012)

Journal of Israeli History: Politics, Society, Culture

Volume 31, Issue 2, 2012

 

Articles

Political aspects of the literature of the Israeli War of Independence

Avner Holtzman
pages 191-215
  • DOI:10.1080/13531042.2012.710770

 

The influence of Abba Hillel Silver’s diaspora Zionism on his decision not to immigrate to Israel

Ofer Shiff
pages 217-233
  • DOI:10.1080/13531042.2012.710771

 

Creating a socialist canon for children: Lea Goldberg dictates a revolutionary dualism in labor movement children’s literature in the 1940s and 1950s

Yael Darr
pages 235-248
  • DOI:10.1080/13531042.2012.710772

 

 

Funeral at the edge of a cliff: Israel bids farewell to David Ben-Gurion

Michael Feige & David Ohana
pages 249-281
  • DOI:10.1080/13531042.2012.710773

Motherhood and nation: The voice of women artists in Israel’s bereavement and memorial discourse

Yael Guilat
pages 283-318
  • DOI:10.1080/13531042.2012.710774

Book Reviews

 
British Pan-Arab Policy, 1915–1922: A Critical Appraisal

Asher Susser
pages 319-321
  • DOI:10.1080/13531042.2012.710775

 

Evolving Nationalism: Homeland, Identity and Religion in Israel, 1925–2005

Stuart Cohen
pages 321-324
  • DOI:10.1080/13531042.2012.710776

Nation and History: Israeli Historiography between Zionism and Post-Zionism

Eran Kaplan
pages 324-328
  • DOI:10.1080/13531042.2012.710777

 

Two Steps Forward, One Step Back: Changing Women, Changing Society

Sharon Halevi
pages 328-330
  • DOI:10.1080/13531042.2012.710778

 

Miscellany

Editorial Board

  • DOI:10.1080/13531042.2012.734055