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The Idea of Israel: A History of Power and Knowledge

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  165 ratings  ·  22 reviews
Since its foundation in 1948, Israel has drawn on Zionism, the movement behind its creation, to provide a sense of self and political direction. In this groundbreaking new work, Ilan Pappé looks at the continued role of Zionist ideology. The Idea of Israel considers the way Zionism operates outside of the government and military in areas such as the country’s education sys ...more
Hardcover, 346 pages
Published February 4th 2014 by Verso (first published August 21st 2012)
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Mar 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Most useful in understanding the US conflicted yet dedicated relationship to Zionism. It explains how evangelical Christianity in the US came to endorse Zionism. Israeli historians will need to respond to his broad-brush criticism of their work, but he makes quite plausible arguments how the contemporary history of Israel is "white-washed" (not so different than that in the US, of course, at the service of the power of a nation-state.)

Back when I read this I believed my hunch more possible that
Kaelan Ratcliffe▪Κάϊλαν Ράτκλιφ▪كايِلان راتكِليف
Brand Israel

A few weeks into reading this book, two Israelis, both male, saw it open in my hands whilst we were travelling on a train into central London. They were visiting the capital for a few days, and, to be frank, were pretty surprised to see someone reading about their country, seeing - as I was to find out - they were fresh off the plane from Heathrow. In all honesty, I handled the encounter terribly. I wasn't truthful about the books content, as well as my feelings toward the Israe
Yazeed AlMogren
Jun 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
يعرض المؤرخ الاسرائيلي ايلان بابيه سعي الحركة الصهيونية في اختلاق الأكاذيب وتحريف التاريخ واستغلال وتضخيم حوادث الاعتداء على اليهود في سبيل انشاء وطن لهم في اسرائيل، الكتاب يبحث في السرديات التاريخية لدولة الاحتلال بشكل خاص ودقيق والتي تستند عليها في تباكيها واظهار مظلوميتها أمام العالم ويضع الحجج المكذبة لها من واقع تخصصه و أرشيف من الوثائق والشهادات
Ayala Levinger
May 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
you must read this book if you think your TRL is too short. I already added so many books referenced in this, yet another, excellent book of prop. Ilan Pappe because the more I read the more I realize there is so much I don't know.
Also we, lefties 😜 sometimes have the feeling that maybe we are exaggerating when we say we feel israel becomes more and more shamelesly racist. we wonder, maybe it was always that bad and it is either we who see more now that we are woke or social median makes everyth
Sam Bahour
May 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book will go down in history as a monumental recording of the Israeli History Industry for generations to come. At its core, the book is a snapshot into a decade of inner Israeli dynamics, from 1990 to 2000, when the basic assumptions that Israel propagated for decades about how the ‘miracle’ of Israel came into being started to be challenged. The history of how this decade was reached is as fascinating as how horrific has been its aftermath.

Except for its last chapter, this book is not for
Aug 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is book is a must-read for anyone who, like me, has found themselves increasingly disturbed by the Pro-Israel propaganda pumped out by the MSM in this country. Some of what I read I vaguely knew about, but a great deal of it was a revelation even for me-a person who likes to believe she is well-read. But where Israel is concerned, unless you actively seek alternative news sources and New Historians such as Ilan Pappe, you will most likely remain in ignorance. And that is to Israel's benefit ...more
Aug 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: history, politics
I found this a very dense and demanding book but rewarding. It is not so much a history of Israel as a history of Israeli culture and therefore also of Zionism, an ideological system which motivated and enabled both religious and secular Jews, since the 1880s, to set about colonising a large part of Palestine and displacing its Palestinian population in order to establish and defend an exclusively Jewish state. Throughout the period of expansion, which continues today, the Jewish settlers have e ...more
Nov 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Since its foundation in 1948 Israel has based its very existence on one paramount idea – Zionism. It uses this idea for its justification, continued existence and political direction. In this important and controversial examination of the very idea of Israel, Ilan Pappé studies the way Israel has used the key concepts of Zionism which often distort the truth to manipulate the facts, which often results in damaging assumptions and even fabrications. Myths and distortions have become accepted as h ...more
Khawla Hattab
Feb 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
كيف روج الصهاينة لفكرة إسرائيل، وما الأدلة التي ساقوها لذلك وكيف استطاعوا اختلاق الرواية وما الأدوات التي استخدموها وسخروها لخدمة ذلك، وهل آمن بها الجميع أم وجدت من يعارض ويحاول النبش في الأدلة والروايات، في اثني عشر فصلاً يحاول الكاتب مناقشة كل هذه الأفكار وهذا ملخص سريع لأهم ما جاء في الكتاب:
الفصل الأول: التاريخ "الموضوعي: للأرض والشعب: يظهر هذا الفصل قادة الحركة الصهيونية الاهتمام الكبير بالعمل التاريخي الأكاديمي لوضع تاريخ أكاديمي هدفه إعادة كتابة تاريخ فلسطين وتاريخ الشعب اليهودي بطريقة تثب
Jun 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
I started this book in June without knowing that it would become increasingly relevant to current affairs as the summer progressed. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in learning more about the history of Israel and indeed more importantly the history of the historiography of Israel. This book gives depth to what can often be a very reductionist portrayal of Israel in the media by tracing the history of how Zionist leaders manipulated and established foundational myths and nationa ...more
Feb 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
Simply brilliant. Although there isn't necessarily any new historical, archival research in this book, it is a wonderful overview of Israeli historiography from the colony's inception to the present moment. It was quite interesting to see how little impact the "New Historians" have had on Israeli society or academia. Although one important development was the fact that the nakba could no longer be ignored. Now it is merely justified by Zionist historians. But while this new understanding of Isra ...more
Jason von Meding
Apr 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A great book to read if you want to understand the evolution of Zionist thought over time and how it has adapted to challenges to Israel’s foundational myths and “classical Zionism”. I hadn’t realised how much momentum divergent intellectuals gathered in the 90s (post-Zionism), and I have mostly observed the backlash (neo-Zionism) since then. Pappe really situates this book in elements of culture, and I appreciated his insights into “Brand Israel” and its battle with the BDS movement.
ريم الدعجاني
يتحدث الأستاذ بجامعة حيفا سابقًا والمؤرخ الإسرائيلي إيلان بابيه عن ما أسميه (فبركة التاريخ والحاضر)، والبروباغندا الإسرائيلية التي لا تمت بصله للواقع الإسرائيلي الإستعماري، سواء من ناحية التحكم بالإعلام أو الفصل العنصري أو التحكم بالأكاديميا والتعليم، و استغلال قضية الهولوكوست لصناعة هولوكوست آخر أشد شناعة ضد الفلسطينيين ، كتاب جيد جدًا نحتاج نحن العرب لقرائته خصوصًا بعد حملات التطبيع مع إسرائيل المؤسفة في الفترة الأخيرة، لنتذكر بأن قضيتنا الأولى هي فلسطين و عدونا الأول هو اسرائيل .
Feb 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-read
Outdid himself once again.
Halvor (Raknes)
Apr 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The Jews are a highly cerebral people. Much more so than any other ethnic group. For a people of less than 15 million souls worldwide the sheer volume of scholarly volumes discussing every aspect of heir lives, religion, history, culture is mind-blowing, simply. Ilan Pappe in this volume documents the budding historiographical movement post-Zionism which was squelched in its infancy at the beginning of the previous decade. Still, for an ostensibly dead movement, the list of books still being chu ...more
Feb 16, 2014 rated it liked it
Readers should be warned that Ilan Pappe's idea of historiography is somewhat different than the mainstream American conception of it. Whereas Americans expect historians to be dispassionate about their subject, trying to simply lay out the facts in an interesting way and allowing their readership to draw conclusions based on their findings, Pappe believes historians should be more engaged politically with their subject matter. This isn't surprising, given his relationship with American firebran ...more
Harry McDonald
A dense, fascinating read, much of which is interesting and very necessary writing (the chapter on Holocaust manipulation is excellent,) but ultimately I'm not sure Pappé has enough of a narrative to sustain his (repetitive) arguments over the 300 or so pages of this work.

I don't know. I need to think about it.
May 08, 2014 rated it liked it
Never finished. Really do not like his writing style. Lacks fluidity and just not compelling to me.
Sep 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A very interesting look at the rise and demise of Post-Zionism and the cultural and political undercurrents involved.
Mills College Library
956.94 P2184 2014
Karl Donn
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Dec 23, 2014
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Mar 03, 2014
Alb Muslim
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Jul 20, 2014
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Oct 15, 2014
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Dec 07, 2014
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Ilan Pappé is a professor with the College of Social Sciences and International Studies at the University of Exeter in the UK, director of the university's European Centre for Palestine Studies, co-director of the Exeter Centre for Ethno-Political Studies, and political activist. He was formerly a senior lecturer in political science at the University of Haifa (1984–2007) and chair of the Emil Tou ...more

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