1st Edition

Contemporary Israeli Cinema Trauma, Ethics and Temporality

By Raz Yosef Copyright 2023
    182 Pages 22 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    182 Pages 22 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Through analysis of the complex discourse surrounding trauma and loss, this book provides a necessary examination of temporality and ethics in Israeli film and television since the turn of the millennium.

    The author examines posttraumatic idioms of fragmentation and incoherence, highlighting the rising resistance towards generic categories, and the turn to unconventional and paradoxical structures with unique aesthetics. Maintaining that contemporary Israeli cinema has undergone an ethical shift, the author examines the revealing traumas and denied identities that also seek alternative ways to confront ethical question of accountability. It discusses the relationships between trauma, nationalism, and cinema through the intertwined perspectives of feminism, queer theory, and critical race and postcolonial studies, showing how national traumas are constructed by notions of gendered, sexual, and racial identity. This innovative text highlights the complexities of discourse surrounding trauma and loss, informed by multiple categories of difference. Across each chapter various elements of Israeli film are explored, spanning from strategies used to critically examine victim-perpetrator dynamics, co-existence in temporal space, women’s cinema in Israel, displacement, and queer communities and identity.

    Beyond its direct contribution to cinema studies and Israel studies, the book will be of interest to trauma and memory studies, postcolonial studies, gender and sexuality studies, Jewish studies, Middle Eastern studies, and cultural studies.


    1. Witnessing and Accountability

    2. Documentary Reenactment and Ethics

    3. Terror TV and Traumatic Time

    4. Trauma and Women's Cinema

    5. Melancholia and Queer Diaspora

    6. Homonationalism and Transnational Temporalities


    Raz Yosef is an Associate Professor and head of the Steve Tisch School of Film and Television at Tel Aviv University, Israel. His research interests are on gender and sexuality, race and ethnicity, trauma and memory in Israeli national visual culture.