Land and Power

Land and Power : The Zionist Resort to Force, 1881-1948

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No other issue so dramatically demonstrates the deep change which occurred in the image of the Jew during the last century as the attitude toward the use of force. A people who were characterized as averse to violence and all forms of fighting adopted military might as its identity symbol. In Land and Power, Anita Shapira traces the road along which the Zionist movement gave up its early ideal of peaceful settlement in Palestine, to the incorporation of the use of force as a legitimate tool for realizing the idea of Jewish national sovereignty there.Shapira includes an in-depth discussion of the emergence of a new, "Israeli" national ethos, accompanied by its particular symbols, myths, and norms. She traces the evolution of a "defensive ethos" in the early decades of the century that reflected the scruples and inhibitions of first-generation socialist Zionist settlers. The appearance in the 1940s of an "offensive ethos" coincided with the coming of age of a new native-born generation, unfettered by their fathers' sensitivities. Shapira argues that this indicated that the barriers of ideology, moral norms, and mental restraints constructed by the founding fathers proved unequal to the impact of the social and political realities of state building.More than an account of political developments, Land and Power explores how the Israeli leadership and population developed a moral justification for the use of force. In so doing, Shapira points up the differences between leadership insights and the views of the general population, arguing that an ambiguity towards the use of force has always been a part of the Israeli national ethos.
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Product details

  • Hardback
  • 165 x 243 x 43mm | 862g
  • Oxford University Press, USA
  • United States
  • English
  • 0195061047
  • 9780195061048

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15 ratings
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