Between nation and land in Zionist teaching of Jewish history, 1920-1954

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The article discusses the representation of Jewish history in the Zionist school system of the Yishuv and the early State of Israel (1920-1954). In the Yishuv period the history curriculum was centered on shifting Jewish centers in the spirit of historian Simon Dubnow, an approach that also integrated Jewish and non-Jewish history. From the 1930s, Ben Zion Dinur and the Teachers' Council of the Keren Kayemet le-Yisrael (Jewish National Fund) attempted to make the Land of Israel the central axis uniting Jewish history, a focus that downplayed non-Jewish history. Because of the opposition to this approach within the education system, this change, which Dinur regarded as essential for the integration of the new immigrants from the Muslim countries into Israeli society, was implemented only after he was appointed minister of education in the early 1950s.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)253-268
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Israeli History
Issue number2
StatePublished - Sep 2008


  • Dinur
  • Education system
  • Historiography
  • History teaching
  • Land of Israel
  • National curriculum


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