Taking in everything from the Kingdom of David to the Oslo Accords, Ruth Wisse offers a radical new way to think about the Jewish relationship to power. Traditional Jews believed that upholding the covenant with God constituted a treaty with the most powerful force in the universe; this later transformed itself into a belief that, unburdened by a military, Jews could pursue their religious mission on a purely moral plain. Wisse, an eminent professor of comparative literature at Harvard, demonstrates how Jewish political weakness both increased Jewish vulnerability to scapegoating and violence, and unwittingly goaded power-seeking nations to cast Jews as perpetual targets.
Although she sees hope in the State of Israel, Wisse questions the way the strategies of the Diaspora continue to drive the Jewish state, echoing Abba Eban's observation that Israel was the only nation to win a war and then sue for peace. And then she draws a persuasive parallel to the United States today, as it struggles to figure out how a liberal democracy can face off against enemies who view Western morality as weakness. This deeply provocative book is sure to stir debate both inside and outside the Jewish world. Wisse's narrative offers a compelling argument that is rich with history and bristling with contemporary urgency.
From the Hardcover edition.
See more like this in our History eBooks section
Share your thoughts on the Jews and Power History eBook with others!
|Title of History eBook: Jews and Power|
|Release Date: 12-24-2008|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group|
This eBook download is available in the following formats:
|Parent title||Jews and Power|
|Devices||Samsung Tablet, Apple Ipad & Iphone, Barnes & Noble Nook, Kobo eReader, Aluratek Libre, Iliad, Nokia, Blackberry, Hanlin|
|Note||ePub, short for electronic publication is one of our favorites and should be yours for a couple of reasons. ePub offers reflowable text giving you flexibility to manipulate how the content is presented. Moreover, lots of cool features are now being developed for the reader like advanced video and audio. ePub is now an industry standard, so all of the "non-propreitary" hardware manufacturers are now supporting it.|
Jews and Power
There was no one left for the soldiers to kill or plunder, not a soul on which to vent their fury; for mercy would never have made them keep their hands off anyone if action was possible. So Caesar now ordered them to raze the whole City and Sanctuary to the ground, leaving the towers that overtopped the others . . . and the stretch of wall enclosing the City on the west—the wall to serve as protection for the garrison that was to be left, the towers to show later generations what a proud and mighty city had been humbled by the gallant sons of Rome. All the rest of the fortifications encircling the City were so completely leveled with the ground that no one visiting the spot would believe it had once been inhabited. This then was the end to which the mad folly of revolutionaries brought Jerusalem, a magnificent city renowned to the ends of the earth.—JOSEPHUS, The Jewish War
The loss of Jewish sovereignty was the defining political event in the life of the Jewish people. Before then, Judea with its capital Jerusalem had been a province of the Roman Empire, paying heavy tribute to Rome yet conducting its affairs with perceived, if not complete, autonomy. Despite intense discord among Judea’s religious and political factions, King Herod had restored the splendor of the Temple, which served as the center of legislative and religious activity. But the capriciousness of Roman rule angered many Jews and provoked them to armed revolt. In 70 CE, following a three-year siege, Titus crushed the Jewish uprising and burned the Temple, leveling the city—as Josephus describes, so that “no one visiting the spot would believe it had once been inhabit...