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From the ”Science of Judaism” to the”New Israeli historians”: landmarks for a history of Jewish historiography


Carol Iancu



Though the need to know the history of the Jews had already been underlined by the representatives of the Jewish Enlightenment move-ment, the Haskala, during the second half of the 18th century, the beginnings of Jewish historiography are dated later, being identified with the works of Wissenschaft des Judentum, the Science of Judaism, emerged during the 20’s of the 19th century. In fact, the maskilim, the adepts of the haskala, still had a traditional understanding of History, as their Hebrew periodical Ha-Meassef, published in Berlin in 1783, and the writings of the movement’s founding father, the well-known philosopher Moses Mendelsohn (1729-1788), clearly show. By contrast, an entirely new impetus animated Immanuel Wolf, author of the article-program ”On the concept of a Science of Judaism”, published in Zeitschrift fur die Wissenschaft des Judentums, paper of the newly established Society for the culture and science of the Jews, set up in 1819. Here we can find, for the first time, in the three parameters set forth by the Science of Judaism, i.e. the study of the texts, the history and the philosophy of Judaism, a genuine critical spirit, a scientific attitude that must guide any research in the knowledge about the past. This new spirit, which provided the basis of Jewish historiography, represents, in the view of Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi, one of the ”multiple responses to the Jewish emancipation crisis and to the fight for obtaining it”.

          Intellectual history was the main point of interest for the representatives of the Wissenschaft, particularly for Leopold Zunz (1794-1886), the greatest of its scholars, who consecrated a large portion of his work to rabbinic literature and its more or less known authors. It was also in response to certain Christian thinkers, who maintained that the Jews’ contribution ended with the Bible, that Zunz tried to uncover the monuments of post-biblical literature. He published an important essay, Etwas uber die rabbinische literature at 24, and another one, Zur Geschichte unde Literatur later on (1845). Aware of the fact that, apart from an often superficial knowledge of the Bible and the Talmud, the Jews themselves ignored almost everything about their ancient sages and writers, about their works or the times when they had written, and the particular circumstances of their respective lives, Zunz became their biographer. His book dedicated to the famous rabbi of 11th century Champagne, Rashi of Troyes, the greatest Biblical and Talmudic exegete of all times, remains a model of the genre. Claiming that the sermon was an exclusively Christian institution, the intolerant Prussic government forbade preaching in German in the synagogues. Zunz immediately reacted with a ”History of the Jewish Sermon” (Gottesdienstliche Vertrage der Juden) (1832). He did not content himself with merely proving that Jewish preaches had long preceded Christianity, but he actually produced the first overall history of Jewish homily. In his studies on medieval liturgical poetry (Die synagogale Poesie des Mittelalters) he revealed that the prayer books represented at the same time a chronicle of the long Jewish martyrdom and he rendered homage to the Jewish troubadours, the paytanim, who, in touching elegies (pyoutim, kinot and selikhot) deplored those who were killed for ”the sanctification of the divine name” (Al kiddush ha-Shem) preferring death to forced conversion, in times of crises and persecutions, particularly during
the Crusades.

          Other scholars brought their notable contribution to the knowledge of the Jewish past in the field of the history of literature, particularly bibliography (Moritz Steinschneider, 1816-1907; we owe him the catalogues of the Hebrew manuscripts in the libraries of the large German towns and the now classical work consecrated to the Hebrew translations of the Middle Ages and to the Jews as translators, Die hebraischen Ubersetzungen im Mittel-Alter und die Juden als Dolmetscher, 1893), Hebrew and Aramaic grammar (Samuel David Luzzato, 1800-1865, professor at the Rabbinic Seminary of Padou), the philosophy of history (Nachman Krochmal, 1785-1840, author of a posthumous work written in Hebrew, More neboukhey ha-zman, ”Guide of the Perplexed of Today”, published under Zunz’s care), or biography (Salomon Judah Loeb Rapaport, 1790-1808, author of remarkable essays on the medieval sages of the rabbinic academies of Babylon).

          Solomon Loewisohn (1789-1821), born at Mor, in Hungary, was a prolific commentator (in Hebrew) of the Bible and a translator of kinot. He drew up, in Hebrew, the first geographical guide for the biblical period and published his history of the Jews, Vorlesungen ueber die neurere Geschichte der Juden (Vienna, 1820). This chronicle was the first attempt made by a Jew (after Flavius Josephus) to write a history of the Jews. During the same year, in Frankfurt the first volume was being published of a work that would finally count ten, Geschichte der Israeliten seit der Zeit der Maccabaeer bis auf unsere Tage, written by Isaac Marcus Jost (1790-1860), in a definite scientific spirit, in keeping with the criteria used in the German universities of the time, particularly by a critical approach of the sources. Nevertheless, despite its merits, this history did not have the expected success, mainly due to the author’s engagement in the Reform movement, which had deprived him of all sympathy for traditional Judaism. Actually, this was mainly a political history, which, despite an excellent presentation of the community institutions, excluded almost completely the cultural aspects.

          If Jost was the pioneer, Heinrich Graetz (1817-1891) should be regarded as the true father of modern Jewish historiography and the most important historian of the Wissenschaft. His monumental history of the Jews, Geschichte der Juden von den aelten Zeiten bis zur Gegenwart (comprising eleven volumes written in non-chronological order between 1853-1876) was radically different from that of his predecessor, sometimes in the quality of his writing and sometimes in the author’s conception of history. We are no longer in the presence of the cold and distant rationalism that had guided Jost. This is a work that shows the author’s sympathy for his subject, for, in keeping with the scientific exigencies (he uses a considerable mass of sources in various languages), he gets involved in the narration of the events. This is a living history describing the Jews’ long struggle for survival, the uniqueness of their destiny, the sufferance infringed by their enemies, but also their moments of joy and their achievements. Tempted by the Reform he nevertheless remains loyal to ancestral Judaism, being influenced by the Dix-neuf epitres sur le judaisme (1836) of Samson-Rapahel Hirsch (1808-1888), the most eminent thinker of Neo-orthodoxy: ”As big as my discontent with the Talmud was, this book [Hirsch’s epistles] restored the harmony between the two of us. So I returned to the Talmud like to a mistress whose virtue I had unjustly doubted. I decided to study this work with passion and to acquire philosophical knowledge…” Graetz considered Judaism as a political-religious body whose ”soul is the Torah and body the Holy Land”. He expounded his outlook on the history of 1846 in an article-program, Konstruktion der juedischen Geschichte, published in the ”Journal pour les interets religieux du judaisme”. Unlike many adepts of the Wissenschaft who saw the Jews exclusively as members of a religious community (Religions-Gemeinschaft), Graetz also saw them as a people (Volksgemeinschaft). It is this national attitude that is present in all his historical work. Although influenced by Moses Hess, who had written in his famous Rome et Jerusalem (1862) that the Jews constituted a nation, Graetz still did not believe in the political rebirth of the Jews in Palestine, already prophesized by that work. Nevertheless, he remained partisan of a Jewish cultural nationalism, fiercely opposing the Jewish-German symbiosis and courageously responding to the attacks launched by von Treitschke, nationalistic and anti-Semite historian, in the eleventh and last volume of his History of the Jews, in a pamphlet entitled Ein wort ueber unserer Judentum (1880).

          Graetz was the most notable exception among the Wissenschaft historians, most of  who ended by building a Jewish past that missed any national reference. This, in fact, constituted the main feature of the Jews of Eastern Europe, who represented most of European Judaism and who knew the most difficult living conditions, remaining non-emancipated until the end of the Great War (they only received citizen rights in 1917 in Russia and in 1919 in Romania). Jewish nationalism and its autonomist variants, Bundist and Zionist, was prompted as much by the ostracism in which Jews had been kept, as by the particular evolution of East European haskala. It is not surprising to read in the Hebrew journal Ha-Chachar, published in Vienna by one of the greatest maskilim, Peretz Smolenskin (1842-1885), long before Theodor Herzl, the following statement of attachment to the Zionist idea and the land of Israel:

”Seek and acquire knowledge, avoid and refuse superstition; above all do not be ashamed of the rock of which you were polished. Yes, be like the other peoples, proud of your literature, jealous of your self-respect, full of hope, like all persecuted peoples, awaiting for the day when you will return to the land that was and will always be ours”.


          The nationalistic discourse, which, we must not forget, was adopted by the Jews in the general context of the raise of national claims of the various peoples and ethnic communities in Europe, had in fact two orientations: ”territorial” and ”autonomist”. Territorial nationalism (of which Zionism was merely a particular form, the most hopeful because it proposed the return to the ancestors’ land), considered dispersion as a misfortune and saw the solution in a massive exodus to a ”promised” and unique land. Autonomist nationalism placed itself on a radically opposed position, based on the belief that it was the presence in compact masses of the Jews in Diaspora that guaranteed their national existence.

          The theoretician of Jewish autonomy was Russian-born historian Simon Doubnov (1860-1941), who stated that the Jews, who should have benefited from the same rights as the other citizens of the countries they were living in, were no less a people, to whom the State should have recognized and guaranteed the linguistic, religious and cultural specificity. So, contrary to the famous sentence of Clermont Tonnerre (”everything to the Jews as individuals, nothing as a nationality”), Doubnov thought that individual emancipation (a la francaise) was compatible with national collective emancipation. Bund, the socialist Jewish workers’ movement, embraced rather the autonomist view, which ensured the flourishing of a laic national identity and Bundism, through its educational and cultural system in Yiddish, the language of East European Jews, became highly successful.

          Jewish nationalism influenced Jewish literature and at the end of the 19th century and beginning of 20th century we witness a genuine shift in historiography, a passage, remarked by many scholars, from the ”Science of Judaism” to the ”Science of the Jewish people”. The emphasis is now laid on the social and economic aspects, on the community structures and religious as well as cultural institutions, on the national aspirations and everyday life of the simple people, the lower on the social scale, those ”forgotten by history”. It is thus Simon Doubnov who makes the radical shift: aware that the Wissenschaft had only managed to provide an intellectual radiography of Judaism, he embarked on writing a global history of the Jewish people in the Diaspora. After publishing a Histoire des Juifs de Russie et Pologne (1916-1920), he published his Universal History of the Jewish People (originally written in Russian), first in German, Die Weltgeschichte des juedischen Volkes (1925-1929, in ten volumes), then in Hebrew and Russian. The translation into Yiddish was completed after his death. Influenced by Renan and Taine (who had underlined the importance of ”significant little things”), declaring himself a rationalist, he ended with a positive evaluation of religion itself, seen as a revelation of the national spirit. In the long history of the Jewish Diaspora, which he rehabilitated, the Jews are called ”world-people”, having known several ”geographical centers” after the disappearance of the ancient state of Israel: Babylon during the early Middle Ages, Spain and the Germanic countries during the Middle Ages, Poland and Lithuania at the end of the Middle Ages and during the modern era and Poland and Russia during the contemporary times… According to Doubnov, it was during the Middle Ages that the Jews became a ”European people”, and they have remained so thereafter, their contribution to European civilization being immense in all fields of thought, science, literature, arts, music… It would thus have been but just to recognize the Jews their statute of national minority, in addition to individual emancipation. This idea made its way and it was not by hazard that the Committee of Jewish Delegations by the Peace Conference in Paris presented, in 1919, three categories of claims: emancipation for the Jews of the countries where they were still deprived of citizen rights (the case of Romania), minority rights for the Jews of the countries where they lived in compact masses (Eastern Europe and wherever else they claimed) and finally recognition of the Jewish National Foyer in Palestine. The study of Jewish history became the epitome of the identity feeling and at the end of the 19th century scholarly associations and reviews emerged all over Europe. In France, a Society of Jewish Studies was established in 1880, which edited – and still does – the Revue des Etudes Juives. In Romania, the Julius Barasch Historical Society was set up in 1886 by Jacob Psantir, author of the first history of the Jews in Romania (Korot ha-Yechudim be-Romania), published in Hebrew at Lemberg in 1877, and by other scholars such as Moses Gaster, Lazar Saineanu and the Schwartzfeld brothers, who all published their pioneer works in Anuarul pentru Israeliti. In Germany, the Germania Judaica Society succeeded to the Institut zur Foerderung der Israelitischen Literatur (founded by Ludwig Philippson and Isaac Marcus Jost), which had published, during 1860-1869, the annual Jahrbuch fuer Geschichte der Juden und des Judentum. In Great Britain, the Jewish Historical Society of England was set up in 1901, while in Russia the Russian Ethnographic Society was established in 1908, in Saint Petersburg…

          The evolvement of Zionist nationalism gave a new impetus to Jewish historiography during the 20th century. The Jewish historians who settled in Palestine (the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, founded in 1925, would play an ever increasing role in the new perception of the Jewish history) and (or) who witnessed the rebirth and independence of Israel, among whom Itzhak Baer (1880-1981), Yossef Klauzner (1875-1958), Chaim Hillel Ben Sasson, Gershom Scholem (1897-1982) and Ben Zion Dinur (1884-1973), embarked on justifying the centrality of Israel and the Diaspora’s attachment to Eretz Israel all along history, gathering and bringing to light a vast documentation to legitimize this view. It suffices to compare the conceptions of Heinrich Graetz, Simon Doubnov and Ben Zion Dinur, one of the most important Israeli historians (founding father of the history department at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, author, among other things, of the volumes: Israel dans la diaspora, Israel dans son pays, Livre d’histoire de la Hagada, Livre de Palmach, the official chronicle of the elite units of the Israeli army), on the starting date of modern times, to measure the weight of ideology in the outlook on history.

          For Graetz, modern times started at the moment when the Enlightenment movement penetrated the Jewish communities. In his view the first modern Jew was Moses Mendelsohn, the father of Aufklarung, or the haskala. For Doubnov, it was the French Revolution, which, granting political emancipation to the Jews, allowed them to enter modernity, as citizens with equal rights. For Ben Zion Dinur, the beginnings of modern times coincide with the moment when the Jews recovered the political links with the land of Israel, which he places in 1700, when history records a first wave of Polish Jews emigrating to Jerusalem…

          A particular place in the Jewish historiography of the 20th century belongs to Salo Witmayer Baron (1895-1989), born in Tarnov, Galicia, who settled in the United States and became the first Jewish teacher teaching Jewish history at an American university. He authored a new universal history of the Jews (the third after Graetz and Doubnov), entitled A Social and Religious History of the Jews, published in three volumes in a first edition in 1937 and in fourteen volumes in the second edition (1954-1969). He knew how to include Jewish history in the general history, how to emphasize the Jews’ capacity to adjust to the most extreme conditions, and how to rehabilitate the medieval time, showing that it had not been just a long line of lamentations and sufferings (he was against the ”weeping history”) but a time of rich creativity. Grounded on an exceptional scientific apparatus, this vast fresco lays the emphasis on the social and religious factors that determined the evolution of Jewish history, across time and space. For Baron, ”the history of the Jews has become a singular combination of national history and universal history”.

          The Shoah, the most terrible tragedy in the history of the Jews, which remains one of the founding myths of the Israeli Republic (it has often been brought up as the main argument in favor of the establishment of the State of Israel), remains (together with the rebirth of Israel) the major topic of contemporary Jewish historiography (particularly after 1989, with the new opportunities of investigation opened in the formerly communist countries). For easily understandable reasons, Israeli historians (Israel Guttman, Yehuda Bauer, Leni Yahil, Saul Friedlander, Lucien Lazare, etc.) put the main emphasis on Jewish resistance against Nazi barbarity, while the Diaspora historians (Raul Hilberg, Michael Marrus, Lucy Davidowicz, Joseph Billig, Leon Poliakov, Serge Klarsfeld, Maxime Steinberg, etc.) put the main emphasis on the understanding of anti-Semitism and the mechanisms for exterminating the Jews. Both categories have praised the attitude of the Just among Nations, who are honored by the Yad Vashem Institute of Jerusalem, and denounced the frightened attitude of the Vatican and the Allies, asking questions without answers, such as why Auschwitz was not bombarded… The permanence of negation-ism constitutes another important factor that prompts numerous young scholars to consecrate their scientific work to the Shoah.


          A new shift in Jewish historiography occurred with the emergence, in Israel, of the ”new historians”, at the end of the 80’s. Who are they, which are the themes they approach, which are the stakes of the debates they raise, resumed by the Hebrew terms makhloket ha-historionim (the historians’ controversy)?

          The phrase ”new historians” was launched by Benny Morris (who is one and who even sees himself as the head of the group), today a professor at the University of Beer Sheva, in an article published in the American Jewish review Tikkun (November December 1998) to designate the authors who had recently published (controversial) studies dedicated to the birth of the State of Israel and the first Israeli-Arab conflict. In fact, four books were published almost simultaneously in English by Israeli historians: The Birth of Israel: Myth and Realities (New York 1987) by Simcha Flapan, The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem 1947-1949 (Cambridge 1987) by Benny Morris, Collusion and Across the Jordan: King Abdallah, the Zionist Movement and the Partition of Palestine (Oxford 1988) by Avi Shlaim and Britain and the Arab-Israeli Conflict 1948-1951 (New York 1988) by Ilan Pappe. This publications, preceded and followed by articles in the main Israeli scientific periodicals (Cathedra, Ha-Tzionut, Zemanim, Studies in Zionism) and by other volumes, such as The First Israelis (New York 1992) by Uri Milstein or Le Septieme Million: les Israeliens et le genocide (Paris 1993) by Tom Segev, questioned the official history of Zionism, the Jewish population of Palestine, the attitude of Yichouv (the Jewish community of Palestine before the proclamation of Israel) concerning the European Jews during the Shoah, the Independence War of 1948 and the Palestinian refugees problem. In fact, a total re-evaluation of an official history accused of being nothing more than Zionist propaganda for internal as well as external use, a real criticism of the unilateral view Israelis have about their history, at a time when the Israeli archives are being opened for the new, often called post-Zionist (term related to the concept of post-modernism) historians to ground their new argumentation.

          This history revisited prompted violent polemics, especially in the press, where the new historians were contested and some of them even accused of having invented or falsified the testimonies needed for ”the construction of an imaginary past designed to justify myths and fables without fundament”, as Ephraim Karsh wrote in his book Fabricating Israeli History: the ”New Historians” (London 1997). Other ”old” historians, like Shabbatai Teveth accused the ”new” ones of being no more than polemists, playing the game of Israel’s enemies, while writer Aharon Meged sanctioned them as ”revisionists”, speaking about the ”Israeli suicidal instinct”… This might be understandable considering that the treatment of the most sensitive subjects concerning the collective memory, the national role of the Zionist enterprise and the collective identity risked turning into myths historical truths uncontested so far.

          The ”new Israeli history” did not actually bring anything new from the point of view of methodology. Its only true ”innovation” resided in the privileged ”historical time” (two decades, 1935-1955), coinciding with the opening of numerous archives of that time, their discourse being more ”relativist”, more ”equitable” to the Other, the Arab adversary. Despite repeated statements made by some of these new experts in Jewish history (Benny Morris, Ilan Pappe), according to which they place themselves deliberately under the aegis of the Ecole francaise des Annales, we are forced to see that their ”historical territory” is placed between diplomatic history and political sciences, far from the economic and social history.

          Whether we refer to the Israeli responsibility in the tragedy of the Palestinian refugees, to the presumed tacit agreement with the Transjordan emirate to the detriment of Palestinians, or to Yichouv’s, and particularly Ben Gurion’s, indifference towards the destruction of European Judaism, accusations launched by, among others, Benny Morris, Avi Shlaim and Tom Segev, we are in fact witnessing the same wish to reinterpret the events related to the two essential phenomena that have marked the history of the Jews during the 20th century: the Shoah and the resurrection of the State of Israel. Places of memory, symbols of Jewish heroism, rooted in ancient history (Massada, last citadel to resist after the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD) or more recently (Tel Hai or Joseph Trumpeldor died as heroes at the beginnings of the Jewish National Foyer in Eretz Israel) have provided the object for recriminations from the part of certain ”new historians”. Belonging, most of them, to the left, the ”new historians”, later joined by the ”critical sociologists” (of which Baruch Kimmerling is the most prolific) have deployed their efforts particularly on demolishing the myths of the Zionist political parties linked to the labor and workers’ movements. They have stigmatized the ”haloutzical” ideology of the founding pioneers, finding it elitist and non-egalitarian, contrary to the established clichés, including the kibbutz and the Tsahal, the Ashkenazi establishment, which did not know (or wanted) to ameliorate the condition of the Sephardim, the Orientals, the Israeli Arabs and the women… Some of them went even farther, like Zeev Sternhell, whose name does not appear officially among the ”new historians” but who questioned, in 1995, in his book published in Tel Aviv, Construction de la Nation ou reforme de la societe? Nationalisme et socialisme dans le Parti travailliste israelien, 1904-1940, the ”pretended” socialist origins of the Israeli left, considering that the socialist principles of social equity and justice were used only as a pretext, subordinated to the enterprise of building a Jewish nation and independent state in Eretz Israel, the land of the ancestors. This historical debate, initially carried out (beyond the publication of numerous works) in universities and research centers, was amplified by the daily press, which usually publishes often very violent articles, replies and counter-replies, whose echoes can be traced to the very Knesset. In France there have recently been similar, often stormy debates concerning the reevaluation of the Vichy regime and of the Algerian war, from the perspective of the new access to long time closed archives. Philosopher Yeremiahou Yovel compares the action of the new historians to that of Ernest Nolte, who raised a tempest claiming that Nazism was merely a reaction to Bolshevism and to the perils of cosmopolite Judaism… In fact, beyond the current questions touching on the Israeli national mythology and the future of the State of Israel, the need is more and more visible to reintegrate the Sephardi heritage into the Jewish history and to re-balance the Judeo-Christian and Judeo-Muslim relations.

          Through their criticism, the ”new historians” have operated, as Michel Abitbol remarks, ”a double revision: the rehabilitation of the Diaspora on the one hand and the profound reevaluation of the nationalistic trends in the evolution of Jewish history on the other hand. The latter is seen as more polyphonic, more polycentric, and most of all more opened as regards the global society, be it Christian or Muslim”. The re-questioning of the official national history, founded on the Zionist mythology, which, like any national mythology, is self-justifying, and the tendency to embellish the facts (like the ”purity of arms”, tohar ha-nechek, to take just one example) and to occult the shadow areas proves the vitality of contemporary Israeli historiography.

          How far has the writing of Jewish history gone from the age of Wissenschaft!

          The evolution of Jewish history cannot be fully understood unless we take into account the very definition of this discipline, proposed by our master Charles-Olivier Carbonell: ”What is historiography? Nothing else than the history of the discourse –a written discourse, with claims to the truth – that people have built about the past; about their own past. For historiography is the best testimony, which we can have about lost cultures, and about our own culture – always assuming that it still exists and that the semi-amnesia, which seems to have hit it, doesn’t unveil death. A society can never better reveal itself than when it projects behind it its own image”.





Abitbol, Michel and Heymann Florence (dir.), L’historiographie israelienne aujourd’hui, Paris, CNRS Editions, 1998.

Almog, Shmuel, Zionism and History; the Rise of a New Jewish Consciousness, New York 1987.

Baer, Itzhak, Etudes d’histoire du peuple juif, Jerusalem 1986, 2 vol.

Barnavi, Eli and Friedlander Saul, Les Juifs et le Xxe siecle. Dictionnaire critique, Calmann-Levy 2000.

Carbonell, Charles-Olivier, L’Historiographie, Paris, PUF, Que sais-je?, 1981.

Dinur, Ben Zion, Sefer Toldot ha-Hagana (History of the Hagana), Tel Aviv 1995.

Flapan, Simcha, The Birth of Israel: Myth and Realities, London, Croom Helm, 1987.

Frankel, Jonathan (dir.), Reshaping the Past: Jewish History and Historians, Studies in Contemporary Jewry, vol. 10, Jerusalem 1994.

Greilsammer, Ilan, La Nouvelle Histoire d’Israel, Paris, Gallimard, 1998.

Heymann, Florence, Les Nouveaux enjeux de l’historiographie israelienne, Jerusalem, Centre de recherché francais, 1995.

Iancu, Carol (dir.), Permanences et mutations dans la societe israelienne, Montpellier, CREJH, Sem. 6, Universite Paul Valery, 1996.

Kimmerling, Baruch, Zionism and Territory: The Socio-territorial Dimension of Zionist Politics, Berkley, Institute of International Studies, 1983.

Morris, Benny, The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem, 1947-1949, Cambridge University Press, 1988; La Nouvelle historiographie: Israel confronte a son passé, Tikkun, Nov.-Dec.1998, pp. 19-23 and 99-102.

Pappe, Ilan, Britain and the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1948-1951, London, Macmillan, 1988.

Segev, Tom, Le Septieme million, les Israeliens et l’Holocauste, Paris, Liana Levi, 1983

Shlaim, Avi, Collusion Across the Jordan: King Abdallah, the Zionsit Movement and the Partition of Palestine, Oxford University Press, 1988.

Shapira, Anita, Land and Power: the Zionist Resort to Force 1881-1948, Oxford University Press 1991.

Sternhell, Zeev, Aux Origines d’Israel, Paris, Fayard, 1996.

Yerushalmi, Yosef Hayim, Zakhor. Histoire juive et memoire juive, Paris, La Decouverte, 1984.

Weitz, Yechaim (ed.), De la vision a la revision: cent ans d’historiographie sioniste, Jerusalem, Mercaz Zalman Shazar, 1997.


English version by Felicia Waldman





Carol Iancu holds an M.A. from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel, and a Ph.D. in History and Letters from the Aix-en-Provence University, France. He is currently Professor of contemporary history at the University of Montpellier III (Paul Valéry), President-founder of the Centre de Recherches et d’Etudes Juives et Hébraïques (C.R.E.J.H.), Director of the Sem collection and co-director of the research team «Juifs, Arméniens et Chrétiens d’Orient», organizer of international scientific congresses and author of many studies dedicated to the history of the Jews and the international relations published in France and worldwide. He is teaching the history of the Romanian Jews within the M.A. program in Jewish studies organized by the Bucharest University.





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