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Author(s): Perra, Emiliano
Date: 2018
Author(s): Moshkovitz, Yuval
Date: 2014
Abstract: This is a psychosocial research project investigating ‘national identity’ amongst middle class Jewish-Israelis in Britain. Its aim is to map key contents and highlight social categories that subjects draw on in their construction of ‘national identity’ and to study how they negotiate these categories and contents when narrating a story of ‘who they are’ as Israelis in Britain. The first part of the thesis provides historical and theoretical background to the study of national identities, with a focus on Jewish-Israeli identity in the context of Zionism. An empirical study is then presented, in which twelve Israelis living in London were interviewed in depth about their views on Israeli national identity, what it meant personally to them to be ‘an Israeli’, and what it meant to be ‘an Israeli in London’. Interviews were transcribed and a critical narrative approach was used to analyze the resulting texts, taking account of reflexive interview processes as well as exploring links with the broader cultural and political context. The findings reveal the elasticity and fluidity of ‘Israeli identity’. Subjects drew on a shared cultural reservoir - Zionist images, preconceptions and signifiers - to describe their personalized experience of belonging to or alienation from an acceptable notion of ‘Israeliness’ while living abroad. ‘Israeli identity’ was constructed against stereotypical images of ‘the others’ which, at times, applied racist discourse. Subjects constructed ‘Israeliness’ differently depending on the context they referred to (e.g. Israeli or British society). Each context had its distinct ‘others’. Within the British context Israeliness was constructed against the images of ‘the local Jews’, the ‘English’ and the ‘local Arabs and Muslims’. Constructing an Israeli identity was also influenced by the social position that subjects were implicated in, in relation to their class, ethnicity, gender, or occupation. This also shaped their experience of dislocation in Britain. Most of the participants conformed with a mainstream perspective on Israeli nationalism and refrained from criticizing it. This was interpreted as a discourse reflecting their privileged socio-cultural position in Israel and their commitment to a Zionist ethos which condemns emigration. Such a portrayal of Israeliness both initiated and contributed to a sense of unsettledness characteristic of this middle-class group. Subjects moved back and forth between two identificatory positions (‘Ha’aretz’ and ‘Israel’) as their points of identification constantly changed. The research contributes to the analysis of nationalism phenomena and associated concepts such as diaspora and belonging among a middle class group of migrants. It outlines cultural, material and political forces that sustain nationalism yet also demonstrates ways through which subjects negotiate or resist the discourses and social categories offered to them for the construction of a ‘national identity’.
Author(s): Hakim, Jamie
Date: 2012
Abstract: In current Jewish Studies scholarship there is a broad consensus that the Arab-Israeli war of June 1967 caused both an intense emotional response in Britain’s Jewish community and a change in the relationship this community had with the State of Israel. What this scholarship has yet to provide is either a detailed account of the ways that the June 1967 war impacted on this community or a sustained theorisation of how the intensity generated by a world-historical event might bring about change. This thesis attempts to address these gaps by interviewing twelve British Jews who lived through their community’s response to the war and supplement this data with original archival research, adding detail that is currently missing from the historical record. It then interprets this data using a cultural studies approach grounded, primarily, in the thought of Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari. In using this approach this thesis reveals that it was the intense affectivity generated by the Zionist representation of the war as the ‘Six Day War’ that caused the community to change in the post-1967 conjuncture. It then identifies these changes as cultural ¬– occurring on the planes of identity, representation, everyday life, cultural practice and, most crucially, affectivity. In revealing the centrality of affect in the impact of the war on the British Jewish community, this thesis argues that the hegemonic form of Zionism that emerges within that community after 1967 is ‘Popular Zionism’, defined as an intensely charged affective disposition towards the State of Israel that is lived out in the cultural identities, everyday lives and cultural practices of British Jews.
Editor(s): Webber, Jonathan
Date: 1994
Abstract: How do the Jews of post-Holocaust, post-communist Europe—east and west—regard themselves: as a religious minority, an ethnic group, or simply as ordinary members of the communities in which they live? How do they regard non-Jews and relate to the Jews of other European countries? Is Israel a factor in forging these relationships? In confronting these questions, the contributors to this book—all of them writers with significant international reputations—cover a wide range of topics from different perspectives.

Contents:
Introduction JONATHAN WEBBER
Part 1 A Changing Europe
1 The Jews of Europe in the Age of a New Völkerwanderung MAX BELOFF
2 Changing Jewish Identities in the New Europe and the Consequences for Israel ELIEZER SCHWEID
Part 2 Demographic and Sociological Considerations
3 An Overview of the Demographic Trends of European Jewry SERGIO DELLAPERGOLA
4 Modern Jewish Identities JONATHAN WEBBER
5 Judaism in the New Europe: Discovery or Invention? NORMAN SOLOMON
Part 3 Hopes and Uncertainties in Religious Trends
6 The Jewish Jew and Western Culture: Fallible Predictions for the Turn of the Century NORMAN LAMM
7 From Integration to Survival to Continuity: The Third Great Era of Modern Jewry JONATHAN SACKS
8 The Role of the Rabbi in the New Europe JONATHAN MAGONET
Part 4 Jewish Communities in Former Communist Countries
9 Jewish Communities and Jewish Identities in the Former Soviet Union MIKHAIL A. CHLENOV
10 Constructing New Identities in the Former Soviet Union: The Challenge for Jews IGOR KRUPNIK
11 Changes in Jewish Identity in Modern Hungary ANDRAS KOVACS
12 Jewish Identities in Poland: New, Old, and imaginary KONSTANTY GEBERT
Part 5 Jewish Communities in Western Europe
13 Israélites and Juifs: New Jewish Identities in France DOMINIQUE SCHNAPPER
14 The Notion of a 'Jewish Community' in France: A Special Case of Jewish Identity SHMUEL TRIGANO
15 British Jewry: Religious Community or Ethnic Minority? GEOFFREY ALDERMAN
16 Religious Practice and Jewish Identity in a Sample of London Jews STEPHEN H. MILLER
17 Jewish Identity in the Germany of a New Europe JULIUS CARLEBACH
Part 6 Rethinking Interfaith Relations in a Post-Holocaust World
18 The Dangers of Antisemitism in the New Europe ROBERT S. WISTRICH
19 The Holocaust as a Factor in Contemporary Jewish Consciousness EVYATAR FRIESEL
20 The Impact of Auschwitz and Vatican II on Christian Perceptions of Jewish Identity ELISABETH MAXWELL
21 A New Catholic-Jewish Relationship for Europe PIER FRANCESCO FUMAGALLI
22 Possible Implications of the New Age Movement for the Jewish People MARGARET BREARLEY
Part 7 Jewish Europe as Seen from Without
23 The New Europe and the Zionist Dilemma DANIEL GUTWEIN
24 Jewish Renewal in the New Europe: An American Jewish Perspective DAVID SINGE
Author(s): Wanounou, Dana
Date: 2016
Abstract: This study aims at explaining the motivations behind 15 Scandinavian Jews’ decision to volunteer for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). The study explores why they had a desire to volunteer for the IDF, and analyzes their motivations in a contextual relation to Israel and the Scandinavian Jewish diaspora. The study identifies three central motivations among the informants to volunteer for the IDF. These are Zionist motivations, motivations connected with the Jewish faith and motivations connected with a desire to be integrated into Israeli society. The informants express a strong conviction in the Zionist credo. The desire to support the state through military service is related to their identification with the Jewish people. By volunteering for the IDF, the informants express that they contribute to the preservation of Jewish existence and Jewish self-determination. Motivations connected with the Jewish faith are also present among the informants. However, these motivations vary according to the individual informants’ observance of Jewish law. The study suggests that the observant informants regard service in the IDF as a secular, but necessary undertaking in order to reach the religious goal of building an exemplary Jewish society that can fulfill the covenant with God. The non-observant informants express that their service in the IDF allowed them to give up traditional Jewish lifestyles brought from Scandinavia, because the IDF provided them with a more modern and secular Jewish universe of meaning. The study identifies a desire to be integrated into Israeli society as a central motivation for why the informants have volunteered for the IDF. The IDF has gained the position as an important arena for integration of Jewish immigrants, as well as being a central provider of national values to its conscripts. The informants express that IDF service has contributed to the shaping of an Israeli identity. Integration to Israel through IDF service thus contains aspects of transformations from Scandinavian diaspora Jews to Israeli Jews.
Author(s): Feldman, Jackie
Date: 2010
Date: 2010
Date: 2008