Magazine

Books: Nostalgia for a Zionism that never was

The book wrestles with some of the fundamental questions of Israel’s history.

Israeli
Photo by: American Colony-Jerusalem-Photo Dept.
‘The newborn State of Israel was one of the most egalitarian democracies in the world… there was no notion of human rights, civil rights, due process… There was no equality for the Palestinian minority.” For author Ari Shavit, the history of Israel seems to hang on a series of essential, and often unexplored, contradictions.

My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel, on the face of it, seems like yet another attempt by an Israeli author to look back on Israeli history and struggle with its problems; similar to Gershom Gorenberg’s The Unmaking of Israel and Hirsh Goodman’s The Anatomy of Israel’s Survival. However, while Shavit’s book is lucidly written, it isn’t clear if the narrative devices employed create a cohesive work.



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