Bulletin: Identity and Nationalism

ToC:

Shofar 34.4 (2016): Special issue on Exile, Center, and Diaspora in Modern Jewish Culture

Articles:

Hochman, Oshrat, and Sibylle Heilbrunn. “‘I am not a German Jew. I am a Jew with a German passport’: German-Jewish identification among Jewish Germans and Jewish German Israelis.” Identities (online first).

Reviews:

Kheir, Zaha. “Review of: Fran Markowitz, Stephen Sharot, Moshe Shokeid (eds.), Toward an Anthropology of Nation Building and Unbuilding in Israel (Lincoln and London: University of Nebraska Press, 2015).” Nations and Nationalism 22.4 (2016): 850-852.

Theses:

Gelotte, Sara. National Identities among Israelis and Palestinians: Discourse Analysis of NGOs, MA Thesis. University of Gothenburg, 2016. (PDF)

Events:

Sammy Smooha, “Is Israel Really Western? Does it Have Viable Alternative Options?” October 26, 2016, 5:30pm, Brunei Gallery Room, SOAS, London.

Abstract: Israel is known as a Western state, culture and society. Applying various standards of Western civilisation, Smooha scrutinises and problematizes this international and self-image, questioning whether Israel is indeed Western. He discusses the barriers in Israel’s drive to the West and the alternative options it has (Middle-Eastern, Mediterranean, global).

 

Advertisements

New Article: Peleg, A New Hebrew Literary Diaspora? Israeli Literature Abroad

Peleg, Yaron. “A New Hebrew Literary Diaspora? Israeli Literature Abroad.” DSpace@Cambridge.

 

URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/254458

 

Abstract

Although the modern stage in the development of Hebrew began in Europe about two hundred years ago, after 1948 modern Hebrew became confined for the most part to the state of Israel. The tumultuous course of Jewish history in the past two centuries, including the Holocaust, the acculturation of North American Jewry, and above all the creation of a Hebrew speaking sovereign state in the Land of Israel, have by and large emptied the Jewish diaspora of Hebrew; certainly of the creative kind of modern Hebrew, which inspired the poets and writers of the Jewish Enlightenment and the Hebrew Revival in Europe, and the North American Hebraists in the first half of the twentieth century. And yet in the past few decades we are witnessing a growing number of Hebrew writers who are no longer confined by geography. Although they still publish their works in Israel, they write them elsewhere, mainly in the US and Europe. Increasingly, too, their works reflect their habitat as well, the peoples and cultures of their countries of residence. Are we witnessing the birth of what can perhaps be termed a “post-national Hebrew” era, an era in which Israel remains an inspiring cultural center, but no longer the only location for the creation of original work in Hebrew? This article looks at various Hebrew novels that were written outside of Israel in the last few decades and examines the contours of what may perhaps be a new chapter in the history of modern Hebrew.

Whether this level of private spending and its concentration on sicker and higher income individuals violates the commitment of equity and fairness is up to the citizens of Israel. For those of us in the U.S. we only wish our level of inequality was so low. In making the decision on what Israel should do about its inequality it would be helpful to understand why individuals use private funding for services that are covered by the national health insurance system. And, most importantly does using a different source of funds (private versus public) impact on the health outcomes of the care involved. This issue is particularly relevant with respect to the very high use of private financing for surgeries.

 

 

 

New Article: Arar et al, Educational Leadership for Social Justice in Israel and Turkey

Arar, Khalid, Kadir Beycioglu, and Izhar Oplatka. “A Cross-Cultural Analysis of Educational Leadership for Social Justice in Israel and Turkey: Meanings, Actions and Contexts.” Compare (early view; online first).

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/03057925.2016.1168283

 

Abstract

The research compares principals in Israel (Jewish and Arab) and Turkey and how they perceive and practice their role in promoting social justice (SJ) in their schools in order to bridge socioeconomic and pedagogic gaps. It poses three questions: (1) How do Turkish and Israeli SJ leaders make sense of SJ? (2) What do SJ leaders do in both countries similarly and differently? (3) What factors facilitate or hinder the work of SJ in both countries? The qualitative study employed in-depth semi-structured interviews to collect the narratives of 11 school principals in Turkey and Israel. A comparative, holistic analysis was employed to identify the principals’ perceptions and daily practice of SJ in their schools. The principals reported different sociocultural, national and personal trajectories that shaped their perceptions of SJ, and described strategies used to promote SJ in their daily scholastic policies, processes and practices that meet the school stakeholders’ backgrounds and needs.

 

 

 

New Article: Ginor & Remez,Veterans’ Memoirs as a Source for the USSR’s Intervention in the Arab-Israeli Conflict

Ginor, Isabella, and Gideon Remez. “Veterans’ Memoirs as a Source for the USSR’s Intervention in the Arab-Israeli Conflict: The Fluctuations in Their Appearance and Character With Political Change in Post-Soviet Russia.” Journal of Slavic Military Studies 29.2 (2016): 279-97.

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13518046.2016.1168136

 

Abstract

Shortly before and after the USSR’s demise, a new literature emerged: memoirs by veterans of the Soviet Union’s massive military intervention in the Arab-Israeli conflict in the 1960s and ’70s. Resurgent Russian pride, coupled with condemnation of its corruption by Soviet crimes, permitted startling disclosures. Tools we developed to evaluate these sources found them remarkably reliable and necessitated a reassessment of existing historiography. The Putin administration marked a reversal. Russian nationalism now stressed continuity with the USSR’s great-power status. ‘Falsification of history against Russian interests’ was criminalized. Some veterans resorted to purported ‘fiction’, which if challenged could be disclaimed. But under even stricter scrutiny, these narratives generally proved to reflect the authors’ actual experience, providing significant pointers for further research.

 

 

 

New Article: Kijek, Hebraism, Polonization, and Tarbut Schools in the Last Decade of Interwar Poland

Kijek, Kamil. “Was It Possible to Avoid ‘Hebrew Assimilation’? Hebraism, Polonization, and Tarbut Schools in the Last Decade of Interwar Poland.” Jewish Social Studies 21.2 (2016): 105-41.

 

URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2979/jewisocistud.21.2.04

 

Abstract

This article examines the problem of the chasm between Zionist ideology, Jewish cultural reality in interwar Poland, and the praxis of Zionist education of this period, manifested in the activities of the Tarbut school network. According to the Zionist idea of monocultural nationalism, the process of acculturation to which interwar Polish Jewry was subjected was conceived as assimilation, which threatened the possibility of the existence of Hebrew culture and Zionist activities in the diaspora. In this article I present reactions to acculturation (or assimilation) through the prism of the polemic of Polish- and Erets Yisrael–based ideologues and educators and through the dissonance between Tarbut educational ideology and praxis, as manifested in the Hebrew educational journal Ofakim, in other publications, and in school programs. I also analyze recollections of Tarbut pupils, their educational experiences, and accounts of how they were perceived in those schools.

 

 

 

New Article: Goldstein, The Beginnings of Ḥibbat Ẓion

Goldstein, Yossi. “The Beginnings of Ḥibbat Ẓion: A Different Perspective.” AJS Review 40.1 (2016): 33-55.

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0364009416000039

 

Abstract

In the spring of 1881, Jewish communities within the Pale of Settlement in Russia and Romania witnessed the creation of the Jewish nationalist groups, regional associations, and other core organizations that would subsequently evolve into the movement that came to be known as Ḥovevei Ẓion (lovers of Zion), or Ḥibbat Ẓion.

Although antisemitism played an important role in stimulating the emergence of Ḥibbat Ẓion, the movement’s establishment must be understood as having been shaped by two concurrent processes. One was the conclusion of Jewish emancipation in central and western Europe, which brought central figures in the national movement, such as Leon Pinsker, to the decisive conclusion that the Jews could only be truly emancipated in an independent Jewish state. The second stemmed from the poor socioeconomic conditions faced by Jews of the time, particularly in eastern Europe. The demographic growth experienced by the Jews of eastern Europe, which reached a high point during the last few decades of the nineteenth century, required a dramatic socioeconomic solution that was nowhere to be found. Proponents of the Jewish nationalist movement argued that the establishment of a Jewish state would also help relieve the Jews’ social and economic plight.

 

 

 

Thesis: Melamed, Israeli Homemade Video Memorials and the Politics of Loss

Melamed, Laliv. Sovereign Intimacy: Israeli Homemade Video Memorials and the Politics of Loss, PhD dissertation. New York: New York University, 2015.
 
URL: http://gradworks.umi.com/37/40/3740826.html
 
Abstract

Sovereign Intimacy takes as its subject of investigation video memorialization of dead Israeli soldiers done by their close family and friends. Mixing private loss, home-made video production, military conduct, state politics, and an institutionalized commemoration, it redraws the affinities between affective intimacy and forms of governing. It delineates the reshaping of sovereignty by filial relationships, video practicing and aesthetics, state and military administration of death and mass media. Sovereign Intimacy inquires into the political currencies of mourning and loss.

The videos respond to an event triggered by operations of state violence—figured by military power—with a personal lamenting of the breaking of intimate ties. These videos are made by the family and for the family, through amateur and semi-amateur modes of production. Although they were meant to be privately circulated, this phenomenon emerged in tandem to the videos being broadcast on television during the events of the National Memorial Day.

Home-made video memorials become a standard of Israeli memorialization during the 1990s. Largely the result of waning public support of the Israeli occupation of the south of Lebanon, and of a growing disavowal of state authority, the phenomenon represented a potential challenge to hegemonic narratives and aesthetic forms, through the appropriation of memory and means of production. However, it did not make way to a new political voice to emerge. Instead, these videos emotionalized violence and victimized its deliverers. Furthermore, the broadcasting of the videos on television—allegedly as a tribute to the families, a communal gesture of listening and a call for solidarity—participated in a national economy of death in which the lives of Lebanese, Palestinians and marginalized people within Israeli society had no value. Lastly, the phenomenon of memorial videos normalized the growing militarization of civil society and neutralized any call for political action.

 

 

 

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.

 

 

 

New Article: Harari, Performing the Un-Chosen Israeli Body

Harari, Dror. “Performing the Un-Chosen Israeli Body: Nataly Zukerman’s Haguf Ha’acher.” TDR 60.1 (2016): 157-64.
 
URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1162/DRAM_a_00530
 
Abstract

Nataly Zukerman “comes out” in this autobiographical performance piece, exposing to the public eye the “invisibility” of her limp; an invisibility imposed on her by a society that insists on downplaying her disability in an attempt to normalize her. Her “other body” is set against not only the universally fabricated image of the privileged able body but also, quite specifically, the idealized, physically fit, heroic Israeli body.

 

 

 

Summer Institute: The Spirit of Jewish Nationalism (NYC, August 7-12, 2016)

The Spirit of Jewish Nationalism

A Tikvah Summer Institute for College Students


Faculty: 
Ruth Wisse, Elliott Abrams, Micah Goodman, Eric Cohen
Dates: August 7-12, 2016
Location: New York City


This August, college students are invited to spend a week of their summer exploring the political and theological ideas that animate Jewish nationalism. This intensive institute is designed for university-level students living in America, Canada, and throughout the Diaspora who wish to uncover the moral and spiritual roots of the Israelite nation, and the intellectual and strategic challenges that confront the modern Jewish state. “The Spirit of Jewish Nationalism” will be hosted at the Tikvah Center in Midtown Manhattan. Admission will include room, board, and a stipend of $500.

Applications are due April 1, 2016.


Curriculum

When today’s undergraduates were born, the State of Israel was already half a century old, and it is not hard to see why they might take its existence for granted. But Israel’s rebirth and continued existence in the ancient Jewish homeland after long dispersion and exile should not be taken for granted. It is a remarkable historical achievement, the fulfillment of deeply rooted hopes and longings, and the result of masterful statecraft and heroic sacrifice. After the twentieth century’s terrors, the Jewish State today is guarded by a Jewish army, governed by a Jewish calendar, and its Knesset debates affairs of state in the language spoken millennia ago by Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

But for all that, the threats arrayed against the State of Israel are more perilous and more potent than they have ever been. Surrounded by terrorists committed to its destruction from the north and the south, with Iran on the precipice of nuclear capacity, Syria dysfunctional, ISIS menacing, and traditional allies like Europe and the United States seeming to weaken in their support, the times call for a renewed vigilance. The achievement of Israel may have been a miracle, but it is a fragile one that requires each generation’s devotion and defense.

Gwendolen_HarlethAnd that devotion begins with study. Each day of the institute includes the close and careful reading of George Eliot’s great Zionist novel Daniel Deronda with master teacher Ruth Wisse, Tikvah’s Distinguished Senior Fellow and a recently retired Harvard University professor. Zionist philosophy and Zionist statesmanship will be core themes of our discussions, and the moral imagination of Jewish nationalism as conveyed through literature will be the centerpiece.

victory-of-joshua-over-the-amalekitesOther sessions will be spent studying the careers and intellectual legacies of the great thinkers and statesmen of Jewish nationalism, both ancient and modern. With Ein Prat Academy’s Micah Goodman and Tikvah’s Eric Cohen, we will consider the political teaching of the Hebrew Bible and the careers, writings, and legacies of Theodor Herzl, Ahad Ha’Am, Ze’ev Jabotinsky, and David Ben-Gurion.

IDF FlagStudents will also have the chance to consider the present moment. Former deputy national security advisor Elliott Abrams will help us see the continued necessity of statesmanship and strategy. They will challenge our thinking about how the political leaders of Israel – animated by the spirit of a noble Jewish Nationalism – can secure and strengthen Jewish sovereignty and security for the 21st century.

New Article: Cox, Israeli Technicians and the Post-Colonial Racial Triangle in Papua New Guinea

Cox, John. “Israeli Technicians and the Post-Colonial Racial Triangle in Papua New Guinea.” Oceania (early view; online first).

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ocea.5100

 

Abstract

Papua New Guinean imaginings of Israel as a potential development partner draw on Christian renderings of the Bible, but they also reflect an understanding of Israel as a modern, technologically advanced nation. As middle-class Papua New Guineans reflect on the failures of national development since gaining independence from Australia, they express ambivalence about the appropriateness of Western models of development for the Papua New Guinean context. However, the influx of Asian investment is also seen as lacking, or even threatening; therefore, Asian models of development also fail to offer an appealing hope for the future. In this paper, I argue that these racialised understandings of modernity represent a ‘post-colonial racial triangle’, a discursive field within which the moral implications of development are understood and debated. Within this triangle, Melanesians are thought to have ‘culture’ and (Christian) ‘morality’ but lack ‘development’. Australians or ‘whitemen’ are thought to have ‘development’ and ‘morality’ but to lack ‘culture’. ‘Asians’ are thought to have ‘development’ and ‘culture’ but to lack (Christian) morality. Taking this moral framing of race into account, Israel emerges as a possible aid donor with the credentials to reconcile these three positions as it is seen to be the possessor of ‘development’, ‘culture’, and ‘morality’.

 

 

New Article: Collins-Kreiner and Kliot, Particularism vs. Universalism in Hiking Tourism

Collins-Kreiner, Noga, and Nurit Kliot. “Particularism vs. Universalism in Hiking Tourism.” Annals of Tourism Research 56 (2016): 132-137.

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.annals.2015.10.007

 

Highlights

• “Particularism vs. universalism” adds a useful dimension to the tourism and leisure of hiking.
• Hiking is composed of two different systems: universalistic and particularistic.
• The dominant features of hiking the Israel National Trail are ‘communitas’, and ‘place attachment’.
• The varied multi-dimensional aspects of hiking could be located on a scale.

 

 

 

New Article: Kavaloski, Exploring Homeland through Miriam Libicki’s Jobnik!

Kavaloski, Laini. “Contested Spaces in Graphic Narrative: Exploring Homeland through Miriam Libicki’s Jobnik!: An American Girl’s Adventures in the Israeli Army.” Studies in Comics 6.2 (2015): 231-51.

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1386/stic.6.2.231_1

 

Abstract

‘Contested spaces in graphic narrative’ argues that spatiality in graphic narratives is conducive to restructuring fraught landscapes. Through an exploration of the contested homelands of the Israeli Palestinian conflict in Miriam Libicki’s Jobnik!: An American Girl’s Adventures in the Israeli Army (2008), this article argues that graphic narratives have a unique ability to depict geographical spaces through lines, panels and various artistic devices. Like maps, such lines and boxes on a page physically create borders and represent corresponding location as bounded; they may represent existing political divisions, or they may subvert and push state-drawn boundaries. These devices within the graphic form open up a recognition of the ways that boundaries obfuscate the multifaceted representations of identity that include multiple nationalisms, ideological discontinuities, as well as human-centred spatial connections. Graphic form, then, becomes a landscape that allows for a complex visual understanding of affective attachment to the state through possibilities of graphic, bordered texts that cut across traditional understandings of territoriality and occupation. Libicki’s status as an outsider and as a woman in the Israel Defense Forces emphasizes her position of precarity in traditional conceptions of the Biblical Jewish homeland as well as in Israel, the modern Jewish state.

 

 

 

New Article: Shelleg, Holocaust Imageries in Late Israeli Art Music

Shelleg, Assaf. “Abandoning Representations: Holocaust Imageries in Late Israeli Art Music.” Dapim (early view; online first).

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/23256249.2016.1131021

 

Abstract

Discussing mechanisms of representation in modern Jewish art music in general and post-Holocaust commemoration music in particular, the article examines the dilution of musical signs in Holocaust-related works penned by Israeli composers Noam Sheriff, Ruben Seroussi, and Tzvi Avni. Written within the span of thirteen years, between 1985 and 1998, these works include Sherrif’s (b. 1935) Mechaye Hametim (He Who Revives the Dead, 1985); Seroussi’s (b. 1959) A Victim from Terezin (1995; based on excerpts from Gonda Redlich’s Terezin diary); Avni’s (b. 1927) Se questo è un oumo (1998; a setting of poems by Primo Levi); and Avni’s From There and Then (1994–1998). The compositions under discussion unfold a continuum of aesthetic approaches ranging from postromantic trajectories that stitch musical signs on nationalist teleological constellations (Sheriff), through conscious non-redemptive formulations (Seroussi), to compositional emphases on the migration and translocation of Jewish musics rather than affixed signs of otherness (Avni). The dilution of Jewish musical markers not only attests to the composers’ abandoning of representational apparatuses, but also necessitates a broader look at the dialectical movement of Jewish musics before, during, and after the Holocaust, lest these sounds become objectified or otherwise overshadowed by nationalist constellations.

 

 

 

New Article: First, Common Sense, Good Sense, and Commercial Television

First, Anat. “Common Sense, Good Sense, and Commercial Television.” International Journal of Communication 10 (2016): 530-48.

 

URL: http://ijoc.org/index.php/ijoc/article/view/3551

 

Abstract

In an era when identity is a hybrid process, it is interesting to examine whether and how it is possible to glean the presence or absence of certain cultural groups from their representations in a given culture. To do so, I employ two key Gramscian concepts: common sense and good sense. Using three research reports (from 2003, 2005, and 2011) that employed content analysis techniques, this article assesses the visibility of various subgroups in Israeli TV programs and majority-minority power relations in a variety of genres on commercial channels in the prime-time slot. This article focuses on three aspects of identity: nationality, ethnicity, and gender.

 

 

 

New Article: Penslar, Rebels Without a Patron State: How Israel Financed the 1948 War

Penslar, Derek. “Rebels Without a Patron State: How Israel Financed the 1948 War.” In Purchasing Power. The Economics of Modern Jewish History (ed. Rebecca Kobrin and Adam Teller; Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2015): 171-91, 316-20.

 
15425

Extract

The Zionist project was as much a product of the era of post-1945 decolonization as it was of colonialism’s zenith in the early twentieth century. The British Empire nurtured the Jewish National Home, yet it was empire’s collapse that made possible the state of Israel’s birth. The nascent state of Israel generated a revolutionary torque akin to that which caused the overthrow of tyrannical regimes and expulsion of colonial masters throughout the world. Like other revolutionary projects of the last century, Zionism displayed hubris and cruelty, but also an unshakable faith in humanity’s capacity to re-engineer itself. Some historians of the 1948 war have described the Yishuv as a well-oiled machine that aligned its entire population into a dedicated fighting force. Not only are such explanations exaggerated, they also overlook the fact that other national liberation organizations such as the FLN or Viet Minh were highly successful at organizing the extraction of revenue and resources from the population and developing an effective fighting force. Compared with the Arab world, Israel in 1948 was indeed exceptional, and the war that secured sovereignty for Israel also brought catastrophe upon the Palestinians. When observed on a global level, however, Zionism’s resemblance to anticolonial and national liberation movements becomes apparent, not only in self-conception but also in method.

 
See: http://www.academia.edu/21075807/Rebels_Without_a_Patron_State_How_Israel_Financed_the_1948_War
 

 

New Article: Shtern, Urban Neoliberalism vs. Ethno-National Division in Jerusalem’s Shopping Malls

Shtern, Marik. “Urban Neoliberalism vs. Ethno-National Division: The Case of West Jerusalem’s Shopping Malls.” Cities 52 (2016): 132-9.

ְְ 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cities.2015.11.019

 

Abstract

Most research on ethnically and nationally contested cities posits that urban spatial segregation trends will remain decisive so long as the macro level national conflict persists, and assumes that the neoliberalization of urban space would only strengthen such trends. Over the last decade however, and despite the ever deepening national conflict, Jerusalem has seen the emergence of neoliberal spaces of consumption that serve as resilient spaces of intergroup encounter between Israeli-Jewish and Palestinian-Arab populations. In this article I will examine and compare two such neoliberal spaces in Jerusalem, and show how under certain conditions, privatized urban spaces can undermine processes of ethno-national segregation. I argue that interactions between members of the two rival groups are challenged and reshaped by neoliberal spaces and that the relocation of the ethno-national intergroup encounters to privatized spaces of consumption could represent a temporal shift to a class based encounters.

 

 

 

New Article: Guetzkow & Fast, Symbolic Boundaries and Social Exclusion: A Comparison of Arab Palestinian Citizens and Ethiopian Jews

Guetzkow, Josh, and Idit Fast. “How Symbolic Boundaries Shape the Experience of Social Exclusion. A Case Comparison of Arab Palestinian Citizens and Ethiopian Jews in Israel.” American Behavioral Scientist (early view; online first).

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0002764215607581

 

Abstract

Symbolic boundaries, understood as the conceptual distinctions used to demarcate in-groups and out-groups, are fundamental to social inequality. While we know a great deal about how groups and individuals construct and contest symbolic boundaries along lines of class, race, ethnicity, religion, and nationality, less attention is given to (a) national belonging as a component of symbolic boundaries distinct from citizenship and (b) comparing how distinct symbolic boundaries shape individuals perceptions of, and reactions to, instances of stigmatization and discrimination. To examine these issues we compared two marginalized groups in Israel, Arab Palestinian citizens and Ethiopian Jewish immigrants. Analyzing 90 in-depth interviews, we find that exclusion based on boundaries of nationality engenders different ways of interpretating and responding to stigmatizing and discriminatory behavior, compared with exclusion based on racial and ethnic boundaries. While Ethiopians see everyday stigmatizing encounters as part of their temporary position as a recently immigrated group from a developing country, and react accordingly with attempts to prove their worth as individuals and ultimately assimilate, Palestinians view the line between them and the Jewish majority as relatively impermeable and attempts to fully integrate as mostly useless, viewing solidarity and education as a means to improve their group’s standing.

 

 

New Article: Dart, Hasbara and Israeli Sport

Dart, Jon. “‘Brand Israel’: Hasbara and Israeli Sport.” Sport in Society (early view; online first).

ְְ 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17430437.2015.1133595

 

Abstract

Until relatively recently, the state of Israel was preoccupied with its military security and paid little attention to cultural politics. However, the emergence of other ‘battlegrounds’ has seen a shift to ‘soft power’ in an attempt to generate a more benevolent global image. This paper spotlights an international sporting event which ordinarily attracts very limited interest from the mainstream media. However, when held in Israel, it created much greater interest. The paper identifies the UEFA’s Men’s U-21 tournament, held in Israel in 2013, to assess how different groups responded to the event: celebratory by the host nation and its supporters, the Israeli Football Association and UEFA; critical amongst Palestinians and their supporters in the international community. The paper identifies how the Israeli state is using ‘hasbara’ in an attempt to arrest its deteriorating international image and shows how the concept is empirically operationalized (‘hasbara in action’).

 

 

 

New Article: Ranta, Re-Arabizing Israeli Food Culture

Ranta, Ronald. “Re-Arabizing Israeli Food Culture.” Food, Culture & Society (early view; online first).

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15528014.2015.1088192

 

Abstract

This paper examines the role Arab-Palestinian food plays in the construction of Israeli national identity and food culture. In particular, it sets out to understand the recent willingness in Jewish-Israeli society to acknowledge Arab, and to a lesser extent Arab-Palestinian, culture and food. This new phenomenon has resulted in the re-Arabization of Israeli food culture. For the first time Arab and Arab-Palestinian food is acknowledged, written about and celebrated. This follows a historically longer process in which the construction of Israeli identity and food culture was based on adaptation and imitation, leading to appropriation and nationalization of Arab-Palestinian food culture.