Memories, myths and misconceptions : an analysis of dominant Zionist narratives formalized in the Israeli Declaration of Independence.




Douglas, Tara

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This thesis contends that from the inception of Zionist ideology until the formation of Israel, the Zionist leadership, through the skillful use of narratives and the process of articulating a specific position and constraining opposing narratives, has been highly effective in creating and molding the historic perspectives and collective memories which have shaped, and continue to shape, Jewish identity and experience in Palestine. This study argues that the Israeli Declaration of Independence of May 1948 formalized core Zionist narratives and national myths within Israeli national self-identity, while simultaneously promoting their acceptance among world Jewry and the international community. This paper also maintains that these key narratives were used to legitimize the attitudes and actions of the early Zionists, and later Israelis, towards the indigenous (and surrounding) Arab populations. The impact of these narratives and national myths on the Palestinian Arabs, the effects of which continue to reverberate, is particularly addressed.



Israelis, Arabs, Israel, Palestine