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Title: Towards a visualisation of the Zionist Sabra 1930-1967
Author: Torday, John
ISNI:       0000 0004 5348 5494
Awarding Body: University of Brighton
Current Institution: University of Brighton
Date of Award: 2014
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This study examines ideas about and photographs of the Sabra, a small yet influential grouping within Zionism that emerged in Jewish Palestine circa 1930 to play a heroic role in the creation of Israel. Drawing inspiration from labour Zionism, at its height the movement is claimed to have numbered twenty thousand people. The Sabra had its own ideals and values that were emulated throughout Jewish society in Palestine. The Sabra became one of the appealing myths in Zionism because of the sacrifice in combat, role in military leadership, and (subsequently) in government. Zionist agencies promoted the Sabra as the fulfilment of the Utopian new Jew, lauded in the press and in fiction. However, a group of intellectuals in the 1960s, assaulted and soon eroded, the mythical status of the Sabra, arguing that their devotion and sacrifice to the state at the expense of individual needs and aspirations was both unhealthy and encouraged a view of the chosen few whose commitment to the state was of a higher order than that of ordinary men and women serving their country, a view that many rejected. Some scholars dismiss the Sabra as an irrelevance, a product of fiction, or propaganda campaigns of early Zionism, and of marginal factual significance in Israeli history. Aside from prominent figures, many Sabra rank remain unknown, so many of the photographs shown here are inventions of what young pioneers should look like, show what was expected of them, and whose main purpose was about persuading others to join the cause and build a country. There is no doubt that myths and folk-tales were as important to Zionism as they were to National Socialism. Both were premised on a blood and soil ideology, and it is Sabra ideals as expressed in photographs that are considered here. The Sabra ethos underpinned the colonial aspirations of Zionism. This study examines Zionism as a colonial movement.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available