Israel: a diaspora of memories?


Since the late nineteenth century and the emergence of the Zionist idea, the Land of Israel – after 1948, the State of Israel – has been presented as a shelter where Jews would build a state of their own and put aside their past life and experience in the diaspora. The return of the Jews to the Land of Israel would bring about the emergence of a new “Hebrew” man and woman, of a unified and rejuvenated people, speaking a common language and sharing one ethno-national identity. In fact, Zionism viewed the diaspora (think of the idea of shlilat ha-galut) as a set of negative parentheses in Jewish history, something to be forgotten and substituted with other (national) memories. So the ideology and policies built on that basis before and especially after the founding of the State of Israel intended to erase the diasporic origin of the (Israeli) Jew and support this Jew’s feeling of having grown up in a void and of originating as a tabula rasa of sorts in Israel. Socialist Zionism and an originally European (Ashkenazi) identity became the hegemonic models to which Jewish migrants would need to conform. However, despite efforts to gather all the Jews from the diaspora in Israel and fuse them as part of the so-called mizug galuyiot (“ingathering of exiles”), since its beginnings and especially in the last few decades the country has paradoxically experienced the emergence of new, Israeli, diasporas.

Israel: A Diaspora of Memories

OpenEdition vous propose de citer ce billet de la manière suivante :
Michèle Baussant (26 novembre 2020). Israel: a diaspora of memories? Mémoires défaites / Defeated memories. Consulté le 15 juillet 2024 à l’adresse

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