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Ben-Gurion University
"Exile, History and the Nationalization of Jewish Memory" - Quotes from a recent lecture by Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin

Exile, History and the Nationalization of Jewish Memory

Some reflections on the Zionist notion of History and Return

Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin

Zionism did not wage its struggle against “Europe”, but against the

Palestinians, thus alienating them fromhistory"...

 

The Palestinian tragedy caused by Jewish settlement and by the establishment

of the Jewish state was not considered as part of the history – but rather

denied and suppressed...

 

The notion of “return” is connected to and has determined the exile of the

Palestinians, and still prevents any discussion based on the fulfillment of their

 rights, including the right of their return. It determines the state of exile in their

own land, through Jewish “negation of exile”...

 

In this framework, the concept of exile directs us also towards a different

definition of Jewish collective identity in Israel/Palestine, one which is based on

 the  recognition of Palestinian rights. Exile refers to the decolonization of the

Jewish entity in Palestine, and directs to a bi-national perspective.

 Elsewhere I have suggested the possibilities of linking the notion of exile with

the notion of bi-nationalism. This attitude was presented already in the 20th by

 the small group of Brit Shalom ("Covenant of peace") that included

intellectuals such as Gershom Scholem, Hugo Bergman, Hans Kohn and later

Martin Buber, Judah Magnes, and Hannah Arendt. All of them shared a

critique of the radical notion of Negation of exile, with the desire for an equal

national co-existence between Jews and Arabs".

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