Routledge Handbook of Modern Israel: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Routledge Handbook of Modern Israel

1st Edition

Edited by Alain Dieckhoff


358 pages

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Israel is a country made up of contradictions. A lively democracy in a multicultural society but within a state promoting a strong national identity; a thriving economy in an unequal society; a culture open to modern trends but drawing on the Hebrew past and preoccupied with the Holocaust and the Arab-Israeli conflict; a sovereign member in the international arena, whose existence is still contested in the Middle East. The Routledge Handbook of Modern Israel provides a comprehensive profile of the intricacies of contemporary Israel, offering a unique, in-depth survey of the country.

Organised thematically, a full range of topics are discussed, including:

  • Politics and international relations
  • The foundation of the Israeli state
  • The birth and development of the Israeli economy
  • Israeli culture
  • Israel’s role in the Middle East

Bringing together more than thirty notable contributors from across the globe, this Handbook sheds light on the multifaceted reality of modern Israel in order to better understand, beyond clichés, this complex society.


'For a quick and authoritative grounding on Israeli demography, or Israeli theater, or the refugee issue, or Hamas, or any of sixty other aspects of Israel or the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, [this is] the reference work of choice. There is nothing else quite like it… a valuable reference work that should be in the library of all academics in the field, or, in fact, anyone with more than a passing interest in Israel or the Israeli–Palestinian conflict… Perfect for that “quick fix,” especially for particular issues that will not go away any time soon.' - Alan Dowty, University of Notre Dame; The Israel Journal of Foreign Affairs 2013.

Table of Contents

Introduction Part 1: The Foundations of the State 1. A Jewish and Democratic State Alain Dieckhoff 2. The Political Institutions of Israel Claude Klein 3. The Supreme Court and the Judicial System Claude Klein 4. Tzahal: A State within a State? Samy Cohen 5. National Memory Avner Ben-Amos Part 2: Life in the City 6. Political Life: from Dominant Party to Political Fragmentation 7. The New Social Movements Michael M. Laskier Part 3: A Plural Society 8. Demography in Israel: Diversity and Convergence Sergio Della Pergolla 9. Jewish Ethnicities in Israel Eliezer Ben-Rafael 10. The Observant and the Secular: Between Confrontation and Transaction Maurice Kriegel 11. Arab Citizens: An Unfinished Process of Integration Laurence Louer 12. Foreign Workers: Faces of the "Globalization of Israel" William Berthomiere Part 4: Economy and Society 13. The Birth and Development of the Israeli Economy, 1948-1977 Gilbert Benhayoun and Rene Teboul 14. An Economy on the road to Independence? Michael Bikard 15. "The New Israeli Economy": Opting for High Technology Daniel Rouach and Michael Bikard 16. The Social Question: Social Citizenship, Income Inequality and Poverty in Israel Gershon Shafir Part 5: Israel in the Middle East 17. Israel and the Palestinians Alain Dieckhoff 18. Israel and the Arab States: From Total Struggle to Partial Peace Alain Dieckhoff and Mark Tessler 19. Israeli Territorial Strategies in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip Part 6: External Relations 20. The Complex Relationship between the State of Israel and the Diaspora Regine Azria 21. Israel and France: Ups and Downs in the Relationship Elie Barnavi 22. The United States and Israel: An Evolving Relationship Robert O. Freedman 23. Israel, the USSR and Russia Laurent Rucker 24. Israel and the Federal Republic of Germany: Realpolitik under the Sign of the Shoah Dominique Trimbur 25. The Relations between Israel and the European Union Alfred Tovias 26. Israel and the Third World Joel Peters Part 7: Culture and Communication 27. Israeli Prose in Hebrew Francoise Saquer-Sabin 28. Israeli Poetry Masha Itzaki 29. Arabic Literature in Israel Sobhi Boustani 30. Israeli Theatre Nurit Yaari 31. Music in Israel Michele Tauber 32. The Visual Arts Gideon Ofrat 33. The History of Israeli Cinema Ariel Schweitzer 34. The Media Jerome Bourdon Conclusion

About the Editor

Alain DIECKHOFF is Senior Research Fellow, Centre for International Studies and Research, and teaches at Sciences Po, Paris. As an academic he has worked extensively on various aspects of contemporary Israel and the Arab-Israeli conflict. He has also undertaken a major comparative project on nationalism in the Western world.

He has authored six books, edited eight others and published more than fifty articles in journals and edited volumes. Among his books published in English are; The Invention of a Nation: Zionist Thought and the Making of Modern Israel, (New York, 2003); The Politics of Belonging: Nationalism, Liberalism, and Pluralism (ed., Lanham, 2004); Revisiting Nationalism: Theories and Processes (co-ed., New York, 2006). His latest book is Le conflit israélo-arabe, (Paris, 2011).

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Middle East / Israel
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Regional Studies