Synopses & Reviews
Israel is smaller than New Jersey, with 0.11% of the world's population, yet captures a lion's share of headlines. It looks like one country on CNN, a very different one on al-Jazeera. The BBC has their version, andlt;iandgt;The New York Timesandlt;/iandgt; theirs. But how does Israel look to Israelis?andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;Israel is smaller than New Jersey, with 0.11% of the world's population, yet captures a lion's share of headlines. It looks like one country on CNN, a very different one on al-Jazeera. The BBC has their version, andlt;iandgt;The New York Timesandlt;/iandgt; theirs. But how does Israel look to Israelis? The answers are varied, and they have been brought together here in one of the most original books about Israel in decades. From battlefields to bedrooms to boardrooms, discover the colliding worlds in which an astounding mix of 7.2 million devoutly traditional and radically modern people live. You'll meet and#8220;Arab Jewsand#8221; who fled Islamic countries, dreadlock-wearing Ethiopian immigrants who sing reggae in Hebrew, Christians in Nazareth who publish an Arabic-style andlt;iandgt;Cosmoandlt;/iandgt;, young Israeli Muslims who know more about Judaism than most Jews of the Diaspora, ultra-Orthodox Jews on and#8220;Modesty Patrols,and#8221; and more. Interweaving hundreds of personal stories with intriguing new research, andlt;iandgt;The Israelisandlt;/iandgt; is lively, irreverent, and always fascinating.
"A panorama of Israeli diversity -- Ashkenazim and Sephardim, Orthodox and secular, Russians and Ethiopians, Arabs and Christians.... Thanks, Ms. Rosenthal!" -- andlt;iandgt;Los Angeles Timesandlt;/iandgt;
"Intimate and vibrant. The only book I have ever seen that reveals the full human spectrum of Israel today." -- Daniel C. Matt, author of andlt;iandgt;God and the Big Bangandlt;/iandgt; and andlt;iandgt;The Essential Kabbalahandlt;/iandgt;
"A panorama of Israeli diversity -- Ashkenazim and Sephardim, Orthodox and secular, Russians and Ethiopians, Arabs and Christians...Thanks, Ms. Rosenthal!"
-- Los Angeles Times
Martin E. Halstuk, Ph.D. professor of journalism, Pennsylvania State University, former reporter, andlt;Iandgt;San Francisco Chronicleandlt;/Iandgt; Donna Rosenthal's sharp journalistic eye gives readers a rare book -- an objective and even-handed account of life in Israel today.
David Biale author of andlt;Iandgt;Eros and the Jewsandlt;/Iandgt; and editor of andlt;Iandgt;Cultures of the Jews: A New Historyandlt;/Iandgt; Donna Rosenthal paints a colorful and compelling portrait of young Israelis nobody knows. We hear the personal stories of the crazy mix of people who live in this well-known but little-understood land. From an Ethiopian with dreadlocks and a kippa to a Muslim rapper to the Christian woman who edits an Arabic-language andlt;Iandgt;Cosmo.andlt;/Iandgt; Anyone who wants to go far beyond the headlines will be wiser for having read this insightful book.
"Rosenthal captures an entire country, one full of flux and drama, in as vivid and nuanced a way as possible." -- andlt;iandgt;Publishers Weeklyandlt;/iandgt;
"A wonderful book: well researched, balanced, and a joy to read. It brings you a picture of Israel that only a superb journalist such as the author can expose. This is one of the best books I have read in a long time." -- Amir D. Aczel, author of andlt;iandgt;Fermat's Last Theoremandlt;/iandgt;
About the Author
andlt;bandgt;andlt;/bandgt;andlt;BRandgt;Donna Rosenthal is the author of the award-winning andlt;iandgt;The Israelisandlt;/iandgt;: andlt;iandgt;Ordinary People in an Extraordinary Land,andlt;/iandgt; new and updated in 2008. Called the best book about Israelis in decades, andlt;iandgt;The Israelisandlt;/iandgt; has more than 100 excellent international reviews across the religious and political spectrums: from the andlt;iandgt;Los Angeles Timesandlt;/iandgt; and andlt;iandgt;The Washington Postandlt;/iandgt; to andlt;iandgt;The Jerusalem Postandlt;/iandgt; and andlt;iandgt;Haaretzandlt;/iandgt; to andlt;iandgt;The Japan Timesandlt;/iandgt;.andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;Ms. Rosenthal was a news producer at Israel Television, reporter for Israel Radio and andlt;iandgt;The Jerusalem Postandlt;/iandgt;, and a lecturer at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Her articles have appeared in The andlt;iandgt;New York Timesandlt;/iandgt;, andlt;iandgt;The Washington Postandlt;/iandgt;, andlt;iandgt;the Los Angeles Timesandlt;/iandgt; andlt;iandgt;Newsweekandlt;/iandgt; and andlt;iandgt;The Atlanticandlt;/iandgt; and many other publications. Ms. Rosenthal has reported from Iran, Lebanon, Egypt and Jordan and was the first journalist to travel to remote mountain villages of Ethiopia and introduce Israel Radio audiences to the Jews of Ethiopia.andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;A winner of three Lowell Thomas Journalism Awards: Best Investigative Reporting, Best Foreign Travel Reporting (The New York Times) and Best Adventure Travel Writing, she has reported from the Middle East, Asia and Africa and South America. An expert on contemporary Israelis, she frequently is interviewed on TV and radio about Israeland#8212;from CNN to ABC to National Public Radio.andnbsp;andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;In a Publishers Weekly's national survey, Ms. Rosenthal placed in the TOP TEN most popular speakers about Israeland#8212;and only female author. She has spoken about modern Israelis at over 25 universitiesand#8212;from Harvard to UCLA to Georgetown. Andandnbsp;to audiences from Silicon Valley to Japan and from Germany to Australia.andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;Ms. Rosenthal has taught journalism at three universities. Sheandnbsp;holds a BA from University of California Berkeley (Political Science) and a Masters of Science (International Relations/Middle East) from The London School of Economics.andlt;BRandgt;andlt;BRandgt;andnbsp;
Table of Contents
Introduction: Colliding Worlds
I Becoming Israeli
1. One of the World's Most Volatile Neighborhoods
2. Dating and Mating Israeli-style
3. A People's Army
4. Swords into Stock Shares
II One Nation, Many Tribes
5. The Ashkenazim: Israel's "WASPS"
6. The Mizrahim: The Other Israelis
7. The Russians: The New Exodus
8. Out of Africa: Ethiopian Israelis in the Promised Land
III Widening Fault Lines Between Jews and Jews
9. The Haredim: Jewish-Jewish-Jewish
10. The Orthodox: This Land Is Your Land? This Land Is My Land!
11. The Non-Orthodox: War of the Cheeseburgers
IV Schizophrenia: Non-Jews in a Jewish State
12. The Muslims: Abraham's Other Children
13. The Bedouin: Tribes, Tents, and Satellite Dishes
14. The Druze: Between Modernity and Tradition
15. The Christians: Uneasy in the Land of Jesus
V The Sexual Revolution
16. Marriage, Polygamy, Adultery, and Divorce Israeli-style
17. Oy! Gay?
18. Hookers and Hash in the Holy Land