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Book: Jews

Chapter: 20. What has Israel Done for the Jews?

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.36001


In ancient times the Jewish people had a country
of their own. In the late nineteenth century,
secular Zionists pressed for the return of Jewry
to its ancient homeland. Eschewing belief in messianic
redemption, they argued that this must be
accomplished through the efforts of Jewish pioneers.
Such figures as Theodor Herzl maintained
that Jews will never be secure as long as they are a
minority people living in foreign lands. Only once
Jews settle in Palestine will they be able to escape
from Judeophobia and persecution. According to
Herzl, the building of a Jewish homeland would
transform Jewish life.

Chapter Contributors

  • Peter Cave ( - pcave) 'The Open University and New York University (London)'
  • Dan Cohn-Sherbok ( - dcohn-sherbok) 'University of Wales (Emeritus Professor) and Rabbi'