The Invention of the Jewish People

Front Cover
Verso, Jun 14, 2010 - History - 344 pages
All modern nation states have a story of their origins, passed down through both official and popular culture, and yet few of these accounts have proved as divisive and influential as the Israeli national myth. The well-known tale of Jewish exile at the hands of the Romans during the first century CE, and the assertion of both cultural and racial continuity through to the Jewish people of the present day, resonates far beyond Israel's borders. Despite its use as a justification for Jewish settlement in Palestine and the project of a Greater Israel, there have been few scholarly investigations into the historical accuracy of the story as a whole. Here, Shlomo Sand shows that the Israeli national myth has its origins in the nineteenth century, rather than in biblical times--when Jewish historians, like scholars in many other cultures, reconstituted an imagined people in order to model a future nation.--From publisher description
 

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
3
4 stars
2
3 stars
0
2 stars
0
1 star
0

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - quantum_flapdoodle - LibraryThing

The author sets out to explain how the Jews went from being people to being "a people". It's an intriguing walk through history by a man who doesn't set out to be for or against the Jews. His only objective is understanding the history, and he does a good job of exploring a touchy topic. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Devil_llama - LibraryThing

The author sets out to explain how the Jews went from being people to being "a people". It's an intriguing walk through history by a man who doesn't set out to be for or against the Jews. His only objective is understanding the history, and he does a good job of exploring a touchy topic. Read full review

Contents

Burdens of Memory
1
Sovereignty and Equality
23
In the Beginning God Created the People
64
Proselytism and Conversion
129
in Search of Lost Jewish Time
190
Identity Politics in Israel
250
Afterword
314
Acknowledgments
326
Index
327
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2010)

Shlomo Sand studied history at the University of Tel Aviv and at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales, in Paris. He currently teaches contemporary history at the University of Tel Aviv. His books include The Invention of the Jewish People, On the Nation and the Jewish People, L'Illusion du politique: Georges Sorel et le débat intellectuel 1900, Georges Sorel en son temps, Le XXe siècle à l'écran and Les Mots et la terre: les intellectuels en Israël.

Bibliographic information