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Envisioning Israel: The Changing Ideals and Images of North American Jews

Overview

Envisioning Israel examines the deeply entwined yet often problematic historical relationship between American Jewry and the Jewish community in Israel and its predecessor, the yishuv, the Jewish settlement in Palestine from the 1880s until 1948.

To explore how North American Jews have envisioned Israel from the late 19th century through the present, Allon Gal initiated an international conference and has selected essays from it on the American Jewish community's political, ...

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Envisioning Israel examines the deeply entwined yet often problematic historical relationship between American Jewry and the Jewish community in Israel and its predecessor, the ... yishuv, the Jewish settlement in Palestine from the 1880s until 1948. To explore how North American Jews have envisioned Israel from the late 19th century through the present, Allon Gal initiated an international conference and has selected essays from it on the American Jewish community's political, religious, economic, and cultural responses to the formation and needs of modern Israel. Written by leading scholars from various disciplines, the articles in this volume discuss the envisioning of Israel as it has evolved between two mythical parameters: Israel as the successful, stubborn nation that has survived tragedy; and Israel as holding out a unique promise of morality and justice —of being a light unto the nations. Read more Show Less

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Overview

Envisioning Israel examines the deeply entwined yet often problematic historical relationship between American Jewry and the Jewish community in Israel and its predecessor, the yishuv, the Jewish settlement in Palestine from the 1880s until 1948.

To explore how North American Jews have envisioned Israel from the late 19th century through the present, Allon Gal initiated an international conference and has selected essays from it on the American Jewish community's political, religious, economic, and cultural responses to the formation and needs of modern Israel.

Written by leading scholars from various disciplines, the articles in this volume discuss the envisioning of Israel as it has evolved between two mythical parameters: Israel as the successful, stubborn nation that has survived tragedy; and Israel as holding out a unique promise of morality and justice—of being a light unto the nations.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814326305
  • Publisher: Magnes Press
  • Publication date: 11/28/1996
  • Series: American Jewish Civilization Series
  • Pages: 444
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 9.02 (h) x 1.06 (d)

Meet the Author

Allon Gal of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, is the author of several important books and numerous articles. Of Israeli birth and education, he received his Joint Ph. D., With Distinction, from Brandeis University's programs of Jewish and American history, and has frequently visited the United States— especially its higher institutes of learning and its Jewish community. Professor Gal, a Senior Research Fellow of Ben-Gurion Research Center, also serves on the faculty of the History Department, and is the founder and director of the Center for American Jewry, BGU. He lives with his family in Beer Sheva.
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Table of Contents

Preface 7
Overview: Envisioning Israel - The American Jewish Tradition 13
I Zionist Ideals
A Projection of America as it Ought to Be: Zion in the Mind's Eye of American Jews 41
Henrietta Szold's Progressive American Vision of the Yishuv 60
"Anu banu artza" in America: The Americanization of the Halutz Ideal 81
II Religious Vision and Education
Envisioning Israel in the Liturgies of North American Liberal Judaism 117
Israel as Symbol and as Reality: The Perception of Israel among Reconstructionist Jews in the United States 149
Israel in American Jewish Education 173
III Fund Raising and Jewish Commitment
American Experts in the Design of Zionist Society: The Reports of Elwood Mead and Robert Nathan 193
Envisaging Israel: The Case of the United Jewish Appeal 219
Bonding Images: Miami Jews and the Campaign for Israel Bonds 254
IV The Cultural Connection
Homelands of the Heart: Israel and Jewish Identity in American Jewish Fiction 271
Israel as Reel: The Depiction of Israel in Mainstream American Films 293
V Tangled Relations
Dual Loyalties: Zionism and Liberalism 319
Are We One? Menachem Begin and the Long Shadow of 1977 335
Did American Jews Really Grow More Distant from Israel, 1983-1993? - A Reconsideration 352
Weakening Ties: American Jewish Baby-Boomers and Israel 374
Breaking the Taboo: Critics of Israel and the American Jewish Establishment 397
List of Contributors 420
Glossary 422
Index 426
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