ISBN: 9780571254231 Publisher: Faber and FaberYear of publishing: 2009 Format: Paperback
No of Pages: 298
Zionism is one of the most misunderstood and controversial of all political doctrines. "To the Promised Land" illuminates its origins and developments and discusses its political theory through an examination...Read more
Zionism is one of the most misunderstood and controversial of all political doctrines. "To the Promised Land" illuminates its origins and developments and discusses its political theory through an examination of the ideas of Zionism's leading thinkers. David J. Goldberg's detailed survey begins with Moses Hess, author of "Rome and Jerusalem" (1862), a seminal work in Zionist literature, and Theodor Herzl, the founder of political Zionism, who envisaged a new state in Palestine that would be an amalgam of the best of European culture. Others combined Zionism with a commitment to religious orthodoxy, socialism, communism or the redemptive effects of agricultural labour. In Palestine, the Zionist movement continued to gather momentum: Goldberg examines the personality and role of Israel's first Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion, and that of his great rival, the militant Revisionist (and mentor of Menachem Begin) Vladimir Jabotinsky.
Some of the Zionists' most strongly held beliefs rested on highly debatable claims: that the Jews are essentially a single nation; that Jewish history since the fall of Jerusalem has been uniformly tragic; and that Zionist immigrants would be welcomed for bringing he benefits of Western culture to a barren, sparsely populated land. Yet it was also they who forged the modern State of Israel - an essential haven for the survivors of the Holocaust - out of very disparate groups of people who had not lived in their 'homeland' for almost two thousand years. This sympathetic but balanced account lays bare the paradoxes and the genuine achievements of a unique movement that has changed the course of Jewish history. Read less
About the author: David J. Goldberg
Rabbi Dr. David J. Goldberg OBE is Emeritus Rabbi of The Liberal Jewish Synagogue, London, having served the congregation as Associate then Senior Rabbi... Read more
Rabbi Dr. David J. Goldberg OBE is Emeritus Rabbi of The Liberal Jewish Synagogue, London, having served the congregation as Associate then Senior Rabbi since 1975. The Liberal Jewish Synagogue is one of the oldest, largest and most prestigious Progressive congregations in the world, with an eminent membership that includes many well-known figures in the Arts, theatre, academia and public life. Educated at Manchester Grammar School, Oxford University and Trinity College, Dublin, David Goldberg received his rabbinic ordination from Leo Baeck College, London in 1971. Widely known in Jewish and general circles for his radical theological views and trenchant criticisms of Israeli policy in the Occupied Territories, he is a regular contributor on religious and political topics to BBC programmes and leading newspapers such as The Times, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, The Independent, etc. He is the author or editor of several books, including The Jewish People: Their History and their Religion (Viking,1987, Penguin,1989), Towards the Promised Land: A History of Zionist Thought (Penguin,1996), the Italian edition of which won the 1999 Premio Iglesias as best book in the Religion and Culture category (it is shortly to be reissued by Faber Finds), and The Divided Self: Israel and the Jewish Psyche Today (I B Tauris, 2006). A long-time advocate of Israel-Palestine peace, he was one of the first British Jews to be invited to meet President Arafat after the signing of the Oslo Accords in 1993. In 1999, he was awarded the Gold Medal of the International Council of Christians and Jews for his 'outstanding contribution to interfaith harmony', having been the initiator of the first Jewish-Christian-Muslim dialogue meetings to be held in the UK. In 2004 he had the Order of Officer of the British Empire (OBE) conferred on him by HM the Queen in recognition of his services to interfaith work. Read less