This course considers the historical, cultural and ethnographic dimensions of the Israel-Palestine conflict. It is intended to introduce students to the ways Israeli and Palestinian societies have been shaped by this conflict, and to highlight core themes that emerge from anthropological writing in this context. Beginning in the eighties, the generation of Israeli historians known as "New Historians" broke with Israeli historiographic convention and sought to challenge conventional understandings of the 1948 war, the first Israeli-Arab war. They revealed that Israeli understandings of 1948 had been shaped as much by nationalist myth as by military actions on the ground. Prior to this reckoning, influential Palestinian scholars such as Edward Said began drawing attention to the problematic nature of Western approaches to seeing and knowing the Arab world that perpetuated Palestinian subjugation and statelessness. Taking these narratives and related debates as a point of departure, this course will examine the following elements of the conflict: immigration and settlement, nationalism/Zionism and religion, military-civil relations, ethnicity and citizenship, refugees and occupation, as well as gender and reproduction. New ethnographic materials will be highlighted and supplemented by classic historical writings and visual/media interventions. A parallel concern, then, will be to show how a comparatively new ethnographic field gets constituted, and the way in which anthropological investigations shape and are shaped by arenas of conflict.
Satisfies a major and minor requirement in Anthropology
Satisfies a major and minor requirement in Arab Studies
Satisfies a minor requirement in Middle East Studies
Satisfies the Social-Scientific Thought requirement
Satisfies the Justice, Equality, and Community requirement
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Time 1135 - 1250pm