Melissa WeiningerOct 21, 2023
Beyond the Land
Diaspora Israeli Culture in the Twenty-First Century
Wayne State University Press 2023
In her book, Beyond the Land: Diaspora Israeli Culture in the Twenty-First Century (Wayne State University Press, 2023), Melissa Weininger theorizes a new category of "diaspora Israeli culture" that is formed around and through notions of homeland and complicates the binary between diaspora and Israel. The works addressed here inhabit and imagine diaspora from the vantage point of the putative homeland, engaging both diasporic and Zionist models simultaneously through language, geography, and imagination. These examples contend with the existence of the state of Israel and its complex implications for diaspora Jewish identities and nationalisms, as well as the implications for Zionism of those diasporic conceptions of Jewish national identity. This dynamic understanding of both an Israeli and a Jewish diaspora works to envision a non-hegemonic Jewish nationalism that can negotiate both political imagination and reality.
Melissa Weininger is an assistant professor of Jewish studies at California State University, Northridge.
Schneur Zalman Newfield is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Jewish Studies at Hunter College, City University of New York, and the author of Degrees of Separation: Identity Formation While Leaving Ultra-Orthodox Judaism (Temple University Press, 2020). Visit him online at ZalmanNewfield.com.