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Post Zionist- Definition

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Post Zionist  (or  Post-Zionist) -

1. A term used to describe "revisionist" Israeli historians including Simcha Flapan and Benny Morris, who presented accounts of Israeli history less favorable to Zionism than the conventionally accepted Zionist narrative. In one sense, the term is based on the idea that Zionism has completed its task by creating the state of Israel. Therefore, it is time to reassess Israeli history in a more objective way and also to formulate a program for the future of Israel. A parallel meaning makes 'post-Zionist" analogous to "post-Modern" and posits an end to ideology and an emphasis on the importance of the individual rather than the importance of the state or "the cause."

Typical claims: 

Arabs were in part or in whole expelled from Israel in 1948 rather than fleeing. This was part of a Zionist design to gain a Jewish majority in Israel.

Jewish forces won the Israel war of Independence because they were stronger than the regular armies fielded by the Arab states. rather than because of special valor.

The Israeli Ashkenazy majority ("elite") mistreated and discriminated against new immigrants from Arab countries.

Post-Zionist authors may include Baruch Kimmerling, Benny Morris, Simcha Flapan and Tom Segev.

Post-Zionist histories and thinking stimulated a reconceptualization of many aspects of Zionist thought and ways in which Zionist history has been viewed in Israel. In particular, Benny Morris's study of the Birth of the Palestinian refugee problem offers irrefutable evidence that in many cases Palestinian Arabs were forced to leave Israel. However, other "discoveries" of post-Zionist historians are not based on new facts that have come to light, but rather a retelling of the same history with different emphasis. While post-Zionist historians claim to be exposing "myths" of Zionist history, in some cases, such as the false claim that there was a massacre in Tantura in 1948, and the post-Zionist version of the battles of Latrun it seems that the post-Zionists are themselves creating myths.

The term is often misunderstood or misapplied as referring to a political ideology. However, there is no "post Zionist movement" and there is no "Post Zionism." The different historians labeled as post-Zionists have different political opinions.

2. A euphemism for anti-Zionist. In this category are writers like Israel Shahak, Ilan Pappe and Avi Shlaim, who were never Zionists.

Synonyms and alternate spellings:

Further Information:  

Hebrew/Arabic pronunciation and transliteration conventions:

'H - ('het) a guttural sound made deep in the throat. To Western ears it may sound like the "ch" in loch. In Arabic there are several letters that have similar sounds. Examples: 'hanukah, 'hamas, 'haredi. Formerly, this sound was often represented by ch, especially in German transliterations of Hebrew. Thus, 'hanukah is often rendered as Chanuka for example.

ch - (chaf) a sound like "ch" in loch or the Russian Kh as in Khruschev or German Ach, made by putting the tongue against the roof of the mouth. In Hebrew, a chaf can never occur at the beginning of a word. At the beginning of a word, it has a dot in it and is pronounced "Kaf."

u - usually between oo as in spoon and u as in put.

a- sounded like a in arm

ah- used to represent an a sound made by the letter hey at the end of a word. It is the same sound as a. Haganah and Hagana are alternative acceptable transliterations.

'a-notation used for Hebrew and Arabic ayin, a guttural ah sound.

o - close to the French o as in homme.

th - (taf without a dot) - Th was formerly used to transliterate the Hebrew taf sound for taf without a dot. However in modern Hebrew there is no detectable difference in standard pronunciation of taf with or without a dot, and therefore Histadruth and Histadrut, Rehovoth and Rehovot are all acceptable.

q- (quf) - In transliteration of Hebrew and Arabic, it is best to consistently use the letter q for the quf, to avoid confusion with similar sounding words that might be spelled with a kaf, which should be transliterated as K. Thus, Hatiqva is preferable to Hatikva for example.

Definitions of Zionism  General History of Zionism and the Creation of Israel   History of Israel and Zionism   Historical Source Documents of Israel and Zionism

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This work and individual entries are copyright 2005 by Ami Isseroff and Zionism and Israel Information Center and may not reproduced in any form without permission unless explicitly noted otherwise. Individual entries may be cited with credit to The Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Zionism and Israel


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