Israel- Society History and Culture

Israel – Society, History, and Politics

Prof. Eyal Naveh


Course Description
The course deals with the Israeli society and focused in particular upon the construction of the Israeli historical narrative as an identity-building narrative, intending to inculcate a collective memory to a diverse society. We will focus on key events and essential representations that shaped the collective identity of the Israeli society from the beginning of the Zionist movement till the present. We will also discuss the changes that the Israeli society experiences in the last generation and how it affects its politics and culture. Among other topics we will discuss issues such as Religious-Zionism, Post-Zionism,; Privatization and Americanization, Holocaust's increasing role in the historical narrative, diversity and multiculturalism, and the enduring conflict with the Palestinians and the Arab world.


Detailed Topics

Week no. 1:
The Israeli-Zionist Narrative: The creation of Collective Memory. Vision of National Revival – Romantic Dreams and the Quest for a New Jew.


Week no. 2:
The Creation of the Zionist Community and Hebrew Culture in Palestine: 1882-1948


Week no. 3
1948 The War of Independence and the Creation of the Jewish State. The Palestinian Nakba. Sabra ; The Generation of 1948


Week no. 4:
The Fifties and Sixties: Enlisted and Collective Culture in a context of Diverse Society: Challenges and Difficultirs


Week no. 5:
1967-1973: From Victory, Power and Messianic Dreams to Disillusionment and Political Changes: Transmormation of Identity.


Week no. 6:
The Role of the Holocaust in creation the Israeli historical Narrative


Week no. 7:
Americanization and Privatization: The Cultural Dimension


Week no.8:
From One to Many: Toward a Multi-Cultural Society?


Week no. 9:
The Challenge of Messianic-Zionism and Post-Zionism


Week no. 10
War and Peace: Arabs Palestinians vs. Jewish Israelis: An enduring conflict.


Attendance and participation: 20%

Midterm: 19%

Final Take home exam: 61%

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