Facts on the Ground

Archaeological Practice and Territorial Self-Fashioning in Israeli Society
Author: Nadia Abu El-Haj
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226002152
Category: Social Science
Page: 363
View: 825

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Archaeology in Israel is truly a national obsession, a practice through which national identity—and national rights—have long been asserted. But how and why did archaeology emerge as such a pervasive force there? How can the practices of archaeology help answer those questions? In this stirring book, Nadia Abu El-Haj addresses these questions and specifies for the first time the relationship between national ideology, colonial settlement, and the production of historical knowledge. She analyzes particular instances of history, artifacts, and landscapes in the making to show how archaeology helped not only to legitimize cultural and political visions but, far more powerfully, to reshape them. Moreover, she places Israeli archaeology in the context of the broader discipline to determine what unites the field across its disparate local traditions and locations. Boldly uncovering an Israel in which science and politics are mutually constituted, this book shows the ongoing role that archaeology plays in defining the past, present, and future of Palestine and Israel.

The Genealogical Science

The Search for Jewish Origins and the Politics of Epistemology
Author: Nadia Abu El-Haj
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226201422
Category: Social Science
Page: 328
View: 8959

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The Genealogical Science analyzes the scientific work and social implications of the flourishing field of genetic history. A biological discipline that relies on genetic data in order to reconstruct the geographic origins of contemporary populations—their histories of migration and genealogical connections to other present-day groups—this historical science is garnering ever more credibility and social reach, in large part due to a growing industry in ancestry testing. In this book, Nadia Abu El-Haj examines genetic history’s working assumptions about culture and nature, identity and biology, and the individual and the collective. Through the example of the study of Jewish origins, she explores novel cultural and political practices that are emerging as genetic history’s claims and “facts” circulate in the public domain and illustrates how this historical science is intrinsically entangled with cultural imaginations and political commitments. Chronicling late-nineteenth- to mid-twentieth-century understandings of race, nature, and culture, she identifies continuities and shifts in scientific claims, institutional contexts, and political worlds in order to show how the meanings of biological difference have changed over time. In so doing she gives an account of how and why it is that genetic history is so socially felicitous today and elucidates the range of understandings of the self, individual and collective, this scientific field is making possible. More specifically, through her focus on the history of projects of Jewish self-fashioning that have taken place on the terrain of the biological sciences, The Genealogical Science analyzes genetic history as the latest iteration of a cultural and political practice now over a century old.

Muslimisch-Jüdischer Dialog

PaRDeS : Zeitschrift der Vereinigung für Jüdische Studien e.V. [22 (2016)]
Author: Riemer, Nathanael,Sanci, Kadir,Szulc, Michal
Publisher: Universitätsverlag Potsdam
ISBN: 3869563702
Category: Religion
Page: 280
View: 7529

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PaRDeS. Zeitschrift der Vereinigung für Jüdische Studien e.V., möchte die fruchtbare und facettenreiche Kultur des Judentums sowie seine Berührungspunkte zur Umwelt in den unterschiedlichen Bereichen dokumentieren. Daneben dient die Zeitschrift als Forum zur Positionierung der Fächer Jüdische Studien und Judaistik innerhalb des wissenschaftlichen Diskurses sowie zur Diskussion ihrer historischen und gesellschaftlichen Verantwortung.

Eine kurze Geschichte der Menschheit


Author: Yuval Noah Harari
Publisher: DVA
ISBN: 364110498X
Category: History
Page: 528
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Krone der Schöpfung? Vor 100 000 Jahren war der Homo sapiens noch ein unbedeutendes Tier, das unauffällig in einem abgelegenen Winkel des afrikanischen Kontinents lebte. Unsere Vorfahren teilten sich den Planeten mit mindestens fünf weiteren menschlichen Spezies, und die Rolle, die sie im Ökosystem spielten, war nicht größer als die von Gorillas, Libellen oder Quallen. Vor 70 000 Jahren dann vollzog sich ein mysteriöser und rascher Wandel mit dem Homo sapiens, und es war vor allem die Beschaffenheit seines Gehirns, die ihn zum Herren des Planeten und zum Schrecken des Ökosystems werden ließ. Bis heute hat sich diese Vorherrschaft stetig zugespitzt: Der Mensch hat die Fähigkeit zu schöpferischem und zu zerstörerischem Handeln wie kein anderes Lebewesen. Anschaulich, unterhaltsam und stellenweise hochkomisch zeichnet Yuval Harari die Geschichte des Menschen nach und zeigt alle großen, aber auch alle ambivalenten Momente unserer Menschwerdung.

Die Erfindung des Landes Israel

Mythos und Wahrheit
Author: Shlomo Sand
Publisher: Ullstein eBooks
ISBN: 3843703426
Category: Body, Mind & Spirit
Page: 400
View: 5376

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Gehört Israel den Juden? Was bedeutet überhaupt Israel? Wer hat dort gelebt, wer erhebt Ansprüche auf das Land, wie kam es zur Staatsgründung Israels? Shlomo Sand, einer der schärfsten Kritiker der israelischen Politik gegenüber den Palästinensern, stellt den Gründungsmythos seines Landes radikal in Frage. Überzeugend weist er nach, dass entgegen der israelischen Unabhängigkeitserklärung und heutiger Regierungspropaganda die Juden nie danach gestrebt haben, in ihr „angestammtes Land“ zurückzukehren, und dass auch heute ihre Mehrheit nicht in Israel lebt oder leben will. Es gibt kein „historisches Anrecht“ der Juden auf das Land Israel, so Sand. Diese Idee sei ein Erbe des unseligen Nationalismus des 19. Jahrhunderts, begierig aufgegriffen von den Zionisten jener Zeit. In kolonialistischer Manier hätten sie die Juden zur Landnahme in Palästina und zur Vertreibung der palästinensischen Bevölkerung aufgerufen, die dann nach der Staatsgründung 1948 konsequent umgesetzt wurde. Nachdrücklich fordert Sand die israelische Gesellschaft auf, sich von den Mythen des Zionismus zu verabschieden und die historischen Tatsachen anzuerkennen.

Kein Land für sich allein

Studien zum Kulturkontakt in Kanaan, Israel/Palästina und Ebirnari für Manfred Weippert zum 65. Geburtstag
Author: Manfred Weippert,Ulrich Hübner,Ernst Axel Knauf
Publisher: Saint-Paul
ISBN: 9783525530436
Category: History
Page: 331
View: 8834

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Choreographies of Shared Sacred Sites

Religion, Politics, and Conflict Resolution
Author: Elazar Barkan,Karen Barkey
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231538065
Category: Political Science
Page: 384
View: 883

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This anthology explores the dynamics of shared religious sites in Turkey, the Balkans, Palestine/Israel, Cyprus, and Algeria, indicating where local and national stakeholders maneuver between competition and cooperation, coexistence and conflict. Contributors probe the notion of coexistence and the logic that underlies centuries of "sharing," exploring when and why sharing gets interrupted—or not—by conflict, and the policy consequences. These essays map the choreographies of shared sacred spaces within the framework of state-society relations, juxtaposing a site's political and religious features and exploring whether sharing or contestation is primarily religious or politically motivated. Although religion and politics are intertwined phenomena, the contributors to this volume understand the category of "religion" and the "political" as devices meant to distinguish between the theological and confessional aspects of religion and the political goals of groups. Their comparative approach better represents the transition in some cases of sites into places of hatred and violence, while in other instances they remain noncontroversial. The essays clearly delineate the religious and political factors that contribute to the context and causality of conflict at these sites and draw on history and anthropology to shed light on the often rapid switch from relative tolerance to distress to peace and calm.

Ritual, Performance, and Politics in the Ancient Near East


Author: Lauren Ristvet
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1107065216
Category: History
Page: 331
View: 2206

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In this book, Lauren Ristvet rethinks the narratives of state formation by investigating the interconnections between ritual, performance, and politics in the ancient Near East. She draws on a wide range of archaeological, iconographic, and cuneiform sources to show how ritual performance was not set apart from the real practice of politics; it was politics. Rituals provided an opportunity for elites and ordinary people to negotiate political authority. Descriptions of rituals from three periods explore the networks of signification that informed different societies. From circa 2600 to 2200 BC, pilgrimage made kingdoms out of previously isolated villages. Similarly, from circa 1900 to 1700 BC, commemorative ceremonies legitimated new political dynasties by connecting them to a shared past. Finally, in the Hellenistic period, the traditional Babylonian Akitu festival was an occasion for Greek-speaking kings to show that they were Babylonian and for Babylonian priests to gain significant power.

On Sovereignty and Other Political Delusions


Author: Joan Cocks
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 178093355X
Category: Political Science
Page: 208
View: 6858

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Winner of the 2015 David Easton Prize, awarded by the American Political Science Association (APSA) Global forces are eroding the ability of states to exert sovereign control over their populations, territories, and borders. Yet when dominated subjects across the world dream of freedom, they continue to conceive of it in sovereign terms. Sovereign freedom haunts the imagination of oppressed ethnic minorities, popular masses ruled by foreign powers or homegrown tyrants, indigenous peoples, and individuals chafing under customary or governmental restrictions. On Sovereignty and Other Political Delusions draws on political theory and on two case studies – the encounter between Anglo-American settlers and Native American tribes, and the search for Jewish sovereignty in Palestine – to probe the allure of the idea of sovereign freedom and its self-defeating logic. It concludes by shifting its sights from political to economic sovereign power and by pursuing intimations of non-sovereign freedom in the contemporary age.

Interpretation and Method

Empirical Research Methods and the Interpretive Turn
Author: Dvora Yanow,Peregrine Schwartz-Shea
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317467361
Category: Political Science
Page: 552
View: 7932

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Exceptionally clear and well-written chapters provide engaging discussions of the methods of accessing, generating, and analyzing social science data, using methods ranging from reflexive historical analysis to critical ethnography. Reflecting on their own research experiences, the contributors offer an inside, applied perspective on how research topics, evidence, and methods intertwine to produce knowledge in the social sciences.

Rereading Israel

The Spirit of the Matter
Author: Bonna Haberman
Publisher: Urim Publications
ISBN: 9655242021
Category: History
Page: 191
View: 1412

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Setting aside vitriolic debates and worn postures, Rereading Israel refreshes current conversations about Israel, opening Jewish sources to interpret Israel in critical, innovative, and inspiring ways. The book presents readers with an opportunity to engage ethically, intellectually, and emotionally, challenging them to apply the resources at their disposal to grapple honestly and creatively with land and people, history, text, and spirit. This consideration invites those who read into a deep exploration of their roles and their relationships to the destiny of a profoundly human and unfinished sacred project.

Competitive Archaeology in Jordan

Narrating Identity from the Ottomans to the Hashemites
Author: Elena Corbett
Publisher: University of Texas Press
ISBN: 0292760809
Category: Social Science
Page: 312
View: 2932

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An examination of archaeology in Jordan and Palestine, Competitive Archaeology in Jordan explores how antiquities have been used to build narratives and national identities. Tracing Jordanian history, and the importance of Jerusalem within that history, Corbett analyzes how both foreign and indigenous powers have engaged in a competition over ownership of antiquities and the power to craft history and geography based on archaeological artifacts. She begins with the Ottoman and British Empires—under whose rule the institutions and borders of modern Jordan began to take shape—asking how they used antiquities in varying ways to advance their imperial projects. Corbett continues through the Mandate era and the era of independence of an expanded Hashemite Kingdom, examining how the Hashemites and other factions, both within and beyond Jordan, have tried to define national identity by drawing upon antiquities. Competitive Archaeology in Jordan traces a complex history through the lens of archaeology's power as a modern science to create and give value to spaces, artifacts, peoples, narratives, and academic disciplines. It thus considers the role of archaeology in realizing Jordan's modernity—drawing its map; delineating sacred and secular spaces; validating taxonomies of citizens; justifying legal frameworks and institutions of state; determining logos of the nation for display on stamps, currency, and in museums; and writing history. Framing Jordan's history in this way, Corbett illustrates the manipulation of archaeology by governments, institutions, and individuals to craft narratives, draw borders, and create national identities.

Mecca and Eden

Ritual, Relics, and Territory in Islam
Author: Brannon Wheeler
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226888045
Category: History
Page: 333
View: 3203

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Nineteenth-century philologist and Biblical critic William Robertson Smith famously concluded that the sacred status of holy places derives not from their intrinsic nature but from their social character. Building upon this insight, Mecca and Eden uses Islamic exegetical and legal texts to analyze the rituals and objects associated with the sanctuary at Mecca. Integrating Islamic examples into the comparative study of religion, Brannon Wheeler shows how the treatment of rituals, relics, and territory is related to the more general mythological depiction of the origins of Islamic civilization. Along the way, Wheeler considers the contrast between Mecca and Eden in Muslim rituals, the dispersal and collection of relics of the prophet Muhammad, their relationship to the sanctuary at Mecca, and long tombs associated with the gigantic size of certain prophets mentioned in the Quran. Mecca and Eden succeeds, as few books have done, in making Islamic sources available to the broader study of religion.

Contested Cultural Heritage

Religion, Nationalism, Erasure, and Exclusion in a Global World
Author: Helaine Silverman
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 9781441973054
Category: Social Science
Page: 286
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Cultural heritage is material – tangible and intangible – that signifies a culture’s history or legacy. It has become a venue for contestation, ranging in scale from protesting to violently claimed and destroyed. But who defines what is to be preserved and what is to be erased? As cultural heritage becomes increasingly significant across the world, the number of issues for critical analysis and, hopefully, mediation, arise. The issue stems from various groups: religious, ethnic, national, political, and others come together to claim, appropriate, use, exclude, or erase markers and manifestations of their own and others’ cultural heritage as a means for asserting, defending, or denying critical claims to power, land, and legitimacy. Can cultural heritage be well managed and promoted while at the same time kept within parameters so as to diminish contestation? The cases herein rage from Greece, Spain, Egypt, the UK, Syria, Zimbabwe, Italy, the Balkans, Bénin, and Central America.

Dramas of Nationhood

The Politics of Television in Egypt
Author: Lila Abu-Lughod
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226001982
Category: Social Science
Page: 324
View: 986

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How do people come to think of themselves as part of a nation? Dramas of Nationhood identifies a fantastic cultural form that binds together the Egyptian nation—television serials. These melodramatic programs—like soap operas but more closely tied to political and social issues than their Western counterparts—have been shown on television in Egypt for more than thirty years. In this book, Lila Abu-Lughod examines the shifting politics of these serials and the way their contents both reflect and seek to direct the changing course of Islam, gender relations, and everyday life in this Middle Eastern nation. Representing a decade's worth of research, Dramas of Nationhood makes a case for the importance of studying television to answer larger questions about culture, power, and modern self-fashionings. Abu-Lughod explores the elements of developmentalist ideology and the visions of national progress that once dominated Egyptian television—now experiencing a crisis. She discusses the broadcasts in rich detail, from the generic emotional qualities of TV serials and the depictions of authentic national culture, to the debates inflamed by their deliberate strategies for combating religious extremism.

Reading Orientalism

Said and the Unsaid
Author: Daniel Martin Varisco
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295802626
Category: History
Page: 518
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The late Edward Said remains one of the most influential critics and public intellectuals of our time, with lasting contributions to many disciplines. Much of his reputation derives from the phenomenal multidisciplinary influence of his 1978 book Orientalism. Said's seminal polemic analyzes novels, travelogues, and academic texts to argue that a dominant discourse of West over East has warped virtually all past European and American representation of the Near East. But despite the book's wide acclaim, no systematic critical survey of the rhetoric in Said's representation of Orientalism and the resulting impact on intellectual culture has appeared until today. Drawing on the extensive discussion of Said's work in more than 600 bibliographic entries, Daniel Martin Varisco has written an ambitious intellectual history of the debates that Said's work has sparked in several disciplines, highlighting in particular its reception among Arab and European scholars. While pointing out Said's tendency to essentialize and privilege certain texts at the expense of those that do not comfortably it his theoretical framework, Varisco analyzes the extensive commentary the book has engendered in Oriental studies, literary and cultural studies, feminist scholarship, history, political science, and anthropology. He employs "critical satire" to parody the exaggerated and pedantic aspects of post-colonial discourse, including Said's profound underappreciation of the role of irony and reform in many of the texts he cites. The end result is a companion volume to Orientalism and the vast research it inspired. Rather than contribute to dueling essentialisms, Varisco provides a path to move beyond the binary of East versus West and the polemics of blame. Reading Orientalism is the most comprehensive survey of Said's writing and thinking to date. It will be of strong interest to scholars of Middle East studies, anthropology, history, cultural studies, post-colonial studies, and literary studies.

The Politics of Public Memory in Turkey


Author: Esra Özyürek
Publisher: Syracuse University Press
ISBN: 9780815631316
Category: History
Page: 225
View: 8290

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In 1923, the newly founded Turkish Republic committed to a modernist future by erasing the memory of its Ottoman past. Now, almost eighty years after the establishment of the Republic, the grandchildren of the founders have a different relationship with history. New generations make every effort to remember, record, and reconcile earlier periods. The multiple and personalized representations of the past with which they engage allow contemporary Turkish citizens to create alternative identities for themselves and their communities. Unlike its futuristic and homogenizing character at the turn of the twentieth century, Turkish nationalism today uses memories to generate varied narratives for the nation as well as the minority groups.Contributors to this volume come from diverse disciplines of anthropology, comparative literature, and sociology but they share a common understanding of contemporary Turkey and how its different representations of the past have become metaphors through which individuals and groups define their cultural identity and political position.

Blood

A Critique of Christianity
Author: Gil Anidjar
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231537255
Category: Religion
Page: 560
View: 4167

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Blood, according to Gil Anidjar, maps the singular history of Christianity. As a category for historical analysis, blood can be seen through its literal and metaphorical uses as determining, sometimes even defining Western culture, politics, and social practices and their wide-ranging incarnations in nationalism, capitalism, and law. Engaging with a variety of sources, Anidjar explores the presence and the absence, the making and unmaking of blood in philosophy and medicine, law and literature, and economic and political thought from ancient Greece to medieval Spain, from the Bible to Shakespeare and Melville. The prevalence of blood in the social, juridical, and political organization of the modern West signals that we do not live in a secular age into which religion could return. Flowing across multiple boundaries, infusing them with violent precepts that we must address, blood undoes the presumed oppositions between religion and politics, economy and theology, and kinship and race. It demonstrates that what we think of as modern is in fact imbued with Christianity. Christianity, Blood fiercely argues, must be reconsidered beyond the boundaries of religion alone.