Constitutive Moments in Israeli History: Nationalisms and Politics from the Mandate to 1955

dc.contributorKing, Jeremyen_US
dc.contributorMcGinness, Fredericken_US
dc.contributorRemmler, Karenen_US
dc.contributorSitze, Adamen_US
dc.contributor.advisorCocks, Joanen_US
dc.contributor.authorAnsari, Mehwashen_US 17:22:19en_US
dc.description.abstractThe State of Israel that emerged about four decades after the historic setting of Kumer s Palestine, harbored Jewish nationalism expressed within a liberal-democratic framework, which was never quite realized. Oren Gross commenting on the Constitutional revolution of Israel in 1992, claims, Since its creation in 1948, the State of Israel has been under an unremitting state of emergency, which continues to be an integral part of the Israeli legal terrain. Legal structures formed in the initial years of statehood, by virtue of their determinate character, seem to have preserved history, the anxieties of a constitutive moment. Around them, actors and situations changed with the stride of time. Whence originated this anachronism? The socio-political landscape of the Land of Israel/Palestine, in Kumer s setting, ruled by the Ottoman Empire, was reconfigured by the British Colonial regime following the First World War. In a span of only the first half of the twentieth century, the region was swept by four wars: the First World War, the Second World War, the Civil War of 1947 and the Nakba / War of Independence of 1948, out of which emerged the Zionist state of Israel. Zionists, who had been a marginal group in the early twentieth century, increasingly gained an audience with the world from the time of the British Colonial regime that they were to retain. When statehood became a possibility in the later years of the British Mandate, however, the very political ideals that Isaac Kumer had considered an adulteration of Zionism in Ottoman years assumed more pressing and vital roles in defining Zionism. How were the Zionists to tactically approach a struggle towards statehood? What would the state s boundaries be? Who would govern it? And what systems of governance would be set up? In 1948, the State itself came to espouse specific institutional practices. These were legitimized by national narratives built up over time, and an elite and its ideology acquired the prerogative to determine sovereignty. This relationship, it seems, was negotiated over a malleable legal terrain: the new State came to be characterized by emergency jurisprudence, which was to last. This state of emergency, in the context of conflicted nationalisms anterior to the nation-state, invites study as a category of practice, deriving from the process of institutionalization itself. It may be considered in conversation with contemporary national and state discourses, in a landscape where law itself was being created.en_US
dc.titleConstitutive Moments in Israeli History: Nationalisms and Politics from the Mandate to 1955en_US
mhc.institutionMount Holyoke Collegeen_US