ToC: Israel Studies 22.2 (2017)

Israel Studies 22.2 (2017)

Table of Contents

    Special Section: Religion And Ethnicity

Articles

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New Article: Meiton, Electrifying Jaffa

Meiton, Fredrik. “Electrifying Jaffa: Boundary-Work and the Origins of the Arab-Israeli Conflict.” Past & Present (early view; online first).

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pastj/gtw002

 
Extract

In the summer of 1923 the Russian-born Jewish engineer Pinhas Rutenberg threw the switch at Mandate Palestine’s first electrical distribution system, lighting up a portion of Allenby Street in Tel Aviv. It was the first step in an endeavour that, according to Rutenberg, was ‘destined to become the most important instrument for the sound development of the country’. The local British government in Jerusalem agreed, as did Whitehall. Major Hubert Young of the Middle East Department predicted that ‘the successful inauguration of Mr. Rutenberg’s schemes will do more than anything else to pacify Palestine, facilitate immigration, and develop the country’. The excitement was echoed among Tel Aviv’s Jewish residents. To them, the roadside pylons could not multiply fast enough. To the Palestinians in neighbouring Jaffa, however, the grid’s expansion was a mixed blessing. The high-tension cable wound its way into town with promises of modernity and the creature comforts of civilized life, but it also signalled the encroachment of Jewish nationalism on Arab Palestine. A significant portion of the Palestinian Arab community was staunchly opposed to Rutenberg’s electrification, and a few weeks before the lights went on along Allenby Street, an angry crowd made its way through the city chanting ‘The lamp-posts of Rutenberg are the gallows of our nation’.

This article argues that electrification played a part in making Palestine an object of nationalist contention, and that properties of the technology itself had a fundamental and lasting impact on the character and strategies of both Zionism and Palestinian nationalism. Far from being part of a neutral backdrop, then, the process of electricity generation and distribution was inherently political.

 

 

New Book: Sasley and Waller, Politics in Israel: Governing a Complex Society

Sasley, Brent E., and Harold M. Waller. Politics in Israel: Governing a Complex Society. New York: Oxford University Press, 2016.

 
9780199335060
 

This is the first textbook on Israel to utilize a historical-sociological approach, telling the story of Israeli politics rather than simply presenting a series of dry facts and figures. The book emphasizes six specific dimensions of the conduct of Israeli politics: the weight of historical processes, the struggle between different groups over how to define the country’s identity, changing understandings of Zionism, a changing political culture, the influence of the external threat environment, and the inclusive nature of the democratic process. These themes offer students a framework to use for understanding contemporary political events within the country. Politics in Israel also includes several chapters on topics not previously addressed in competing texts, including historical conditions that led to the emergence of Zionism in Israel, the politics of the Arab minority, and interest groups and political protest.

 

Table of Contents

Abbreviations
Preface
Acknowledgments

INTRODUCTION
Chapter 1: Israel in Historical and Comparative Perspective

Studying Israel
Israel in a Comparative Framework
Major Themes of the Book
A Note on Terminology
 
PART I: HISTORICAL PROCESSES
Chronology of Key Events
Chapter 2: Zionism and the Origins of Israel
Jewish History before Zionism
The Jewish Predicament in the 19th Century
The Founding of the Zionist Movement
Implications of Zionism
Herzl’s Path to Zionism
Organizing the Zionist Movement
Zionist Ideologies
The Palestine Mandate
Summary
 
Chapter 3: Yishuv Politics during the Mandate Period
Constructing a Jewish Society
Development of a Party System
Conflict between Arabs and Jews in Mandatory Palestine
Deteriorating Zionist-British Relations
The End of the Mandate
The Mandate Period in Perspective
Summary
 
Chapter 4: State Building After 1948
Mamlachtiut
The Political Arena
Defense
Education
Economy
Personal Status Issues
Other State-Building Efforts
Summary
 
PART II: ISRAELI SOCIETY
Chapter 5: Political Culture and Demography

The Pre-State Period
Foundational Values of the State
Changes since 1967
From Collectivism to Individualism
Political Culture in the Arab Community
Demography
Summary
 
Chapter 6: Religion and Politics
Religion and the Idea of a Jewish State
Setting the Parameters of the Religion-State Relationship
Growing Involvement in Politics
Issues in Religion-State Relations after 2000
Religious Parties and Coalition Politics
Summary
 
Chapter 7: The Politics of the Arab Minority
What’s in a Name?
Changing Politics of the Community
Jewish Attitudes toward the Arab Minority
Arab Leaders and the Arab Public
Voter turnout
Sayed Kashua as Barometer?
Summary
 
PART III: THE POLITICAL PROCESS
Chapter 8: The Electoral System

The Development of an Electoral System
Election Laws
Parties and Lists
Electoral Reforms
Summary
 
Chapter 9: Political Parties and the Party System
Party Clusters
Leftist Parties
Rightist Parties
Religious Parties
Arab Parties
Center or “Third” Parties
Ethnic or Special Issues Parties
Party Organization
Summary
 
Chapter 10: Voting Patterns
Four Main Issues
Demographic Factors
Voter Turnout
Electoral Trends
Summary
 
Chapter 11: Interest Groups and Political Protest
Changing Access in the Israeli Political System
Interest Groups
Political Protest
Summary
 
PART IV: INSTITUTIONS
Chapter 12: The Knesset

Structure of the Knesset
Legal Aspects
Knesset Members
Functions and Powers of the Knesset
Relationship to the Government
Summary
 
Chapter 13: The Government
The Government at the Center of the System
Powers of the Government
Forming a Government
Maintaining and Running a Government
Relations with the Knesset
The President of the State
Summary
 
Chapter 14: The Judiciary and the Development of Constitutional Law
The Judicial System
Structure of the Court System
The Religious Court System
The Attorney General
Basic Laws: A Constitution in the Making?
Interpreting the Constitution
Summary
 

PART V: POLITICS AND POLICYMAKING
Chapter 15: Political Economy

Ideas about Economic Development in the Yishuv
A State(ist) Economy
Likud and the Free Market
Structural Weaknesses
Summary
 
Chapter 16: The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Three Levels of Threat Perception
Israel’s Threat Environment
Hawks and Doves in the Political System
The Defense Establishment
Public Opinion
Summary
 
PART VI: THE TRANSFORMATiON OF ISRAELI POLITICS
Chapter 17: The Changing Political Arena
A More Complex Society
An Economic Transformation
Transformation of the Security Situation
The Israeli-Palestinian Relationship
Dampening of Ideology
Political Culture and the Party System
The Passing of a Heroic Generation
A More Consequential Arab Sector
The Transformation of the Judiciary
Change versus Continuity
 
Chapter 18: Confronting the Meaning of a Jewish State
The Political Question: What is Jewish and Democratic?
The Social Question: Who Belongs?
The Academic Question: Whose Historiography?
Conclusion
 
Appendices
Glossary
Bibliography

 

BRENT E. SASLEY is Associate Professor of Political Science at The University of Texas at Arlington.
HAROLD M. WALLER is Professor of Political Science at McGill University.

New Book: Goldscheider, Israeli Society in the Twenty-First Century

Goldscheider, Calvin. Israeli Society in the Twenty-First Century. Immigration, Inequality, and Religious Conflict, Schusterman Series in Israel Studies. Lebanon, NH: Brandeis University Press (imprint of University Press of New England), 2015.

9781611687477

This volume illuminates changes in Israeli society over the past generation. Goldscheider identifies three key social changes that have led to the transformation of Israeli society in the twenty-first century: the massive immigration of Jews from the former Soviet Union, the economic shift to a high-tech economy, and the growth of socioeconomic inequalities inside Israel. To deepen his analysis of these developments, Goldscheider focuses on ethnicity, religion, and gender, including the growth of ethnic pluralism in Israel, the strengthening of the Ultra-Orthodox community, the changing nature of religious Zionism and secularism, shifts in family patterns, and new issues and challenges between Palestinians and Arab Israelis given the stalemate in the peace process and the expansions of Jewish settlements.

Combining demography and social structural analysis, the author draws on the most recent data available from the Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics and other sources to offer scholars and students an innovative guide to thinking about the Israel of the future.

This book will be of interest to scholars and students of contemporary Israel, the Middle East, sociology, demography and economic development, as well as policy specialists in these fields. It will serve as a textbook for courses in Israeli history and in the modern Middle East.

Table of Contents

List of Tables and Figure
• Preface
• Acknowledgments
• Nation-Building, Population, and Development
• Ethnic Diversity
Jewish and Arab Populations of Israel
• Immigration, Nation-Building, and Ethnic-Group Formation
• Arab Israelis
Demography, Dependency, and Distinctiveness
• Urbanization, Residential Integration, and Communities
• Religiosity, Religious Institutions, and Israeli Culture
• Inequality and Changing Gender Roles
• Education, Stratification, and Inequality
• Inequality and Mortality Decline
• Family Formation and Generational Continuities
• Emergent Israeli Society
Nation-Building, Inequalities, and Continuities
• Appendix:
Data Sources and Reliability
• Bibliography
• Index

New Book: Schilling, Emotional State Theory. Friendship and Fear in Israeli Foreign Policy

Schilling, Christopher L. Emotional State Theory. Friendship and Fear in Israeli Foreign Policy. Lanham: Lexington Books, 2015.

 

schilling

 

This book develops “emotional state theory” as a new contribution to international relations theory (IR). The text addresses the State of Israel vis-à-vis the rest of the world. The rationale for this research perspective stems from the trajectory of Israeli state-building since its foundation in May 1948 to the present date. This trajectory is constructed reflecting the trauma of the past and dreams about the future. Both contribute decisively to a better understanding of the current image and position of the state of Israel. The reference builds on two great Jewish thinkers’ works, Theodor Herzl and his book The Jewish State and Sigmund Freud’s The Interpretation of Dreams.

The author argues that despite the fact that both never met, taken together their ideas lend themselves to shed light on and offer an explanation for Israel’s troubled and uncertain position in current international relations. The resulting question underlying this work on the emotionality of states and its impact on international relations is therefore “whether Israel is still in a process of dreaming” and whether it is therefore to be understood a “state which has not yet woken from the trauma of the Jewish past. Not a dream’s fulfilment of an end of the Diaspora, but a nightmare based on this experience.” Drawing on these two parallel and rather influential texts, Schilling rephrases the leading questions of this book as this: “Has Israel developed an understanding of itself which sees the country as a modern state among the nations, which is dealing with its neighbors, or rather, does Israel understand itself more as being like a ghetto that is still surrounded by a hostile world? Has Israel become a strong, self-confident country, or has it continued with the nervousness of the Diaspora Jews to become a state with an emotional problem?”.

 

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Theoretical Framework
Chapter 2: Methodological Strategy
Chapter 3: Jewish Identity Constructions in Israel
Chapter 4: Israeli Foreign Policy
Chapter 5: Conclusion

 

Christopher L. Schilling is political scientist and lawyer.

 

 

New Book: Spangler,Understanding Israel/Palestine. Race, Nation, and Human Rights in the Conflict

Spangler, Eve. Understanding Israel/Palestine. Race, Nation, and Human Rights in the Conflict. Rotterdam: Sense, 2015.

Spangler

 

 

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is the longest, ongoing hot-and-cold war of the 20th and 21st centuries. It has produced more refugees than any current conflict, generating fully one quarter of all refugees worldwide. Everyone knows that the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is important itself, and is also fueling tensions throughout the Middle East. Yet most people shy away from this conflict, claiming it is “just too complicated” to understand.

This book is written for people who want a point of entry into the conversation. It offers both a historic and analytic framework. Readers, whether acting as students, parishioners, neighbors, voters, or dinner guests will find in these pages an analysis of the most commonly heard Israeli positions, and a succinct account of the Palestinian voices we seldom hear. The author argues that human rights standards have never been used as the basis on which the Israeli-Palestinian conflict should be resolved and that only these standards can produce a just and sustainable resolution.

This book will be useful for classes in Middle East studies, peace and conflict studies, Middle East history, sociology of race, and political science. It can be helpful for church groups, labor groups, or other grass roots organizations committed to social justice, and for all readers who wish to be informed about this important topic.

 

Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgements

Section 1: Introduction
Chapter 1: Introduction: Tell Our Story
Chapter 2: In Israel and Palestine: What You See Is What We Bought
Chapter 3: Basic Concepts: Human Rights, Race, and Nation
Chapter 4: Zionism: The Idea That Changed Everything

Section 2: The History of the Conflict: Another Look
Chapter 5: State Builders, Settlers, and Colonial Subjects: The Past Is Prologue
Chapter 6: Establishing the State, Preparing Occupation
Chapter 7: Occupation and Resistance: The Zionist Dream Comes True, or Be Careful What You Ask for 129
Chapter 8: The Endless, Deceptive Peace Process

Section 3: Moving Forward
Chapter 9: Four Frames: Israeli Self-Defense, Genocide, Apartheid, Ethnic Cleansing/Sociocide
Chapter 10: Zionism Revisited: From 1967 back to 1948
Chapter 11: Conclusion: Hope and History

Section 4: Supplementary Materials
Appendix: Study Questions
References
Index

Eve Spangler is a sociologist and a human and civil rights activist. For the last decade, her work has focused on the Israel/Palestine conflict; she argues that human rights are the neglected standards that could lead to a just and sustainable solution. See more at evespangler.com.

New Article: Rosenberg-Friedman | Ben-Gurion and the ‘Demographic Threat’

Rosenberg-Friedman, Lilach. “David Ben-Gurion and the ‘Demographic Threat’: His Dualistic Approach to Natalism, 1936–63.” Middle Eastern Studies 51.5 (2015): 742-66.

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00263206.2014.979803

 

Abstract

This article illuminates one of the many facet of Ben-Gurion’s leadership that had an impact on his public image – his stance on fertility and childbirth, during the years 1936–63. The article outlining Ben-Gurion’s thoughts on the birthrate in Mandatory Palestine and the State of Israel, analyse the developments in his views over the years and the reasons for it. His perception of the Jewish national importance of boosting the birthrate grew over time in keeping with historical developments and the soaring natural increase of the Arabs. In the first stage, births were important to him due to the need to create a Jewish majority that would pave the way for a Jewish state. In the second stage, once this goal had been achieved, it was out of concern for the security and stability of the state – in this stage, however, he built his leadership as a prime minister of all Israel citizens, including the Arabs. The analysis demonstrates, therefore, that Ben-Gurion’s approach was characterized by dualism. The reasons for this dualism as well as Ben-Gurion’s image as a ‘godfather of fertility’ are the focal point of this article.

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.

 

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17467586.2014.964741

 

Abstract

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.

 
 
 

Reviews: Judis, Genesis: Truman, American Jews, and the Origins of the Arab/Israeli Conflict

Judis, John B. Genesis: Truman, American Jews, and the Origins of the Arab/Israeli Conflict. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2014.

 

judis1

Reviews

 

 

Response by John Judis: Conservative Critics Say My New Israel Book Is Anti-Semitic. They Must Not Have Read It Very Closely. New Republic, February 26, 2014.

Reviews: Allen, The Rise and Fall of Human Rights

Allen, Lori. The Rise and Fall of Human Rights. Cynicism and Politics in Occupied Palestine, Stanford Studies in Human Rights. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2013.

 

pid_20486

 

Reviews:

  • Wright, Fiona. “Review.” Journal of Legal Anthropology 1.3 (2013): 396-398.
  • Seidel, Timothy. “ReviewH-Net Reviews, February 2014.
  • Barbosa, Gustavo. “Review.” Critique of Anthropology 34.3 (2014): 372-374.
  • Hurwitz, Deena R. “Review.” Middle East Journal 68.1 (2014): 173-175.
  • Kelly, Tobias. “Review.” Allegra – A Virtual Lab of Legal Anthropology, August 11, 2014.
  • Smith, Charles D. “Review.” American Historical Review 119.4 (2014): 1399-1400.
  • Baruch, Pnina Sharvit. “Review.” Middle Eastern Studies 50.4 (2014): 679-682.
  • Hajjar, Lisa. “Review.” International Journal of Middle East Studies 47.1 (2015): 175-176.

New Book: Zelkovitz, Students and Resistance in Palestine

Zelkovitz, Ido. Students and Resistance in Palestine. Books, Guns and Politics. Abingdon and New York: Routledge, 2015.

 

9781138802971

 

URL: http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9781138802971/

 

Exploring the Palestinian Student Movement from an historical and sociological perspective, this book demonstrates how Palestinian national identity has been built in the absence of national institutions, whilst emphasizing the role of higher education as an agent of social change, capable of crystallizing patterns of national identity.

Focussing on the political and social activities of Palestinian students in two arenas – the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and the Palestinian diaspora, Students & Resistance covers the period from 1952-2000. The book investigates the commonality of the goal of the respective movements in securing independence and the building of a sovereign Palestinian state, whilst simultaneously comparing their development, social tone and the differing challenges each movement faced.

Examining a plethora of sources including; Palestinian student magazines, PLO documents, Palestinian and Arabic news media, and archival records, to demonstrate how the Palestinian Student Movements became a major political player, this book is of interest to scholars and students of Palestinian History, Politics and the Arab-Israeli Conflict.

Table of Contents

Preface

Introduction

1 The Rise of a New Generation: Palestinian Students and the Experience of Nakba

2 From Struggle to Accommodation: The General Union of Palestine Students and PLO

3 The Politics of Survival: The GUPS in Times of Crisis

4 Between Cairo and Beirut: The GUPS in the Aftermath of the 1973 War

5 The 1980s: Military Challenges and Paradigm Shift

6 The Emergence of the Palestinian Higher Education System

7 Between Academic Freedom and Military Supervision: The Palestinian Universities and the National Struggle

8 The Palestinian Student Movement in the West Bank and Gaza: A Sociopolitical Account

9 The Palestinian Student Movement Between Two Intifadas

New Article: Baracskay, The Evolutionary Path of Hamas

Baracskay, Daniel. “The Evolutionary Path of Hamas: Examining the Role of Political Pragmatism in State Building and Activism.” Terrorism and Political Violence (early view; online first).

 

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09546553.2013.812035

 

Abstract

Of the two major Palestinian factions, Hamas has demonstrated that it is more radical and willing to use acts of terrorism than Fatah. While some arguments have made the case that Hamas has become more moderate in light of efforts to develop stable institutions of government and societal organizations, there has not been conclusive evidence of this ideological shift. In fact, the continued adherence to the Muqawama (resistance) Doctrine represents a decisive facet of the movement’s enduring pledge to nullify the state of Israel through a prolonged war of attrition. This article examines the role of political pragmatism in the evolution of Hamas. First, it discusses why the moderation argument alone does not provide an adequate understanding of the movement’s evolution, especially since it continues to embrace the use of terrorism and violence as facets of Islamism and as an extension of the Muqawama Doctrine. Second, rather than solely using the moderation argument, this article offers an alternative approach which considers how the combination of strategic policy approaches implemented by Hamas has reflected the role of pragmatism in pursuing its domestic and foreign policy agendas, which are intertwined with the values of the Muqawama Doctrine.

New Article: Wildeman and Tartir, Donor Aid in Occupied Palestine in the aftermath of the Arab Uprisings

Wildeman, Jeremy and Alaa Tartir. “Unwilling to Change, Determined to Fail: Donor Aid in Occupied Palestine in the aftermath of the Arab Uprisings.” Mediterranean Politics 19.3 (2014): 431-49.

 

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13629395.2014.967014

 

Abstract

Since 1993 the international community has invested more than $24 billion in ‘peace and development’ in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt). That aid was meant originally to support the Oslo Peace Process through economic development. However, neither peace nor development has been realized, and both seem increasingly unlikely. While examining donor operations, priorities and the ‘aid-for-peace’ agenda, this article investigates whether patterns in oPt donor aid have changed following the Arab uprisings of 2011. Building on 28 original interviews with Palestine aid actors, it was found that patterns remain unchanged and that donors remain transfixed on a long failed ‘Investment in Peace’ framework that was designed for economic development by the World Bank back in 1993. By comparing these research findings with the literature on aid to Palestine, this article argues that donors are not ready to alter a framework dominated by policy instrumentalists who emphasize pre-determined normative values over actual results, quietly trading financial inducements to Palestinians to forgo political rights within a ‘peace dividends’ model. Meanwhile, critics of the existing aid framework remain largely ignored and have little influence on aid policy, in spite of two decades of instrumentalist failure to produce peace or economic growth using the existing model.

New Article: Leech, Who owns ‘the spring’ in Palestine?

Leech, Philip. “Who Owns ‘The Spring’ in Palestine? Rethinking Popular Consent and Resistance in the Context of the ‘Palestinian State’ and the ‘Arab Spring’.” Democratization, published online April 29, 2014.

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13510347.2014.899584

Abstract

The Palestinian Authority’s (PA) claim to embody the spirit of the “Arab Spring”, through its recent “state-building” agenda – including its elevation to “non-member observer status” at the United Nations – is disingenuous. This conclusion rests on three key arguments outlined in this article. First, this article identifies a continuation of broader patterns of authoritarianism represented by the PA’s lack of adherence to democratic practices, the deprivation of access for the Palestinian population to basic resources and the wider issue of the continued absence of Palestinian sovereignty. Second, it identifies the intensification of some authoritarian practices within Palestine, particularly in the areas of security and policing, for example by the use of force against protestors. Finally, this article identifies that civil-society groups and opposition supporters throughout 2011–2012 have more genuinely embodied evidence of resistance to authoritarianism in popular demonstrations against the PA.