Maelstrom of Identities

A Critical Look at Religion and Secularity in Israel

Edited by
Yossi Yonah, Yehuda Goodman
Publisher Van Leer Institute Press and Hakibbutz Hameuchad
Language Hebrew
Year of Publication 2004
Series Theory in Context Series

Maelstrom of Identities: A Critical Look at Religion and Secularity in Israel presents for the first time a scholarly-critical analysis that aims to challenge the customary distinctions in Israeli society between religion and secularity. The papers in this book represent a wide variety of disciplines—philosophy, literature, sociology, and anthropology—and demonstrate the extent of the breach of the clear definitions that have categorized and constructed religious identities in Israel.

The perspectives presented here broaden the public and academic discourse and highlight the need to link the issue of secularity and religion to other social and cultural topics in Israel—especially nationality, ethnicity, class, and gender. One of the main topics that the book addresses is the various ways in which the customary definitions of religious observance and secularity contribute to creating practices that shunt certain groups to the margins of society.

In addition to describing and analyzing well-known ideological and theological attitudes, the book presents alternative perspectives that express the voices that are swallowed up by the hegemonic views. These clarifications can contribute to the reformulation of the mutual relations between religious observance and secularity.

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