The ghost of the Holocaust is ever present in Israel, in the lives and nightmares of the survivors and in the absence of the victims. In this compelling and disturbing analysis, Idith Zertal, a leading member of the new generation of revisionist historians in Israel, considers the ways Israel has used the memory of the Holocaust to define and legitimize its existence and politics. Drawing on a wide range of sources, the author exposes the pivotal role of the Holocaust in Israel's public sphere, in its project of nation building, its politics of power and its perception of the conflict with the Palestinians. She argues that the centrality of the Holocaust has led to a culture of death and victimhood that permeates Israel's society and self-image. For the updated paperback edition of the book, Tony Judt, the world-renowned historian and political commentator, has contributed a foreword in which he writes of Zertal's courage, the originality of her work, and the 'unforgiving honesty with which she looks at the moral condition of her own country'.
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(228mm x 152mm x 19mm)
Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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Author Biography - Idith Zertal
Idith Zertal is an Israeli historian and essayist, the author of many books and articles on Jewish, Zionist and Israeli history. She is currently teaching at the Institute of Jewish Studies at the University of Basel, Switzerland. Her works include From Catastrophe to Power: Holocaust Survivors and the Emergence of Israel (1998), and Lords of the Land: The War over Israel's Settlements in the Occupied Territories, 1967-2007 (co-authored with Akiva Eldar, 2007). Israel's Holocaust and the Politics of Nationhood has been published in eight languages.