Culture of Contemporary Israel

HEBREW 2241: Culture of Contemporary Israel

An introduction to the culture of modern Israel: historical roots, socio-political institutions and developments, and literary and artistic creations reflecting the realities of contemporary Israeli society.  Prereq: 2241H requires Honors standing, or permission of instructor. Not open to students with credit for 241. GE cultures and ideas and diversity global studies course.  Cross-listed in Jewish Studies 2242.

The purpose of this course is to familiarize students with contemporary Israeli culture in all of its diversity.  Since the founding of the State in 1948, Israeli society has faced a series of dramatic challenges and has undergone tremendous changes.  This course will survey the major social, cultural, religious and political trends in Israel, with special emphasis on the post-1967 period.  We will explore developments in music, dance, poetry, and archaeology; responses to founding ideals and ideologies; the impact of the Arab-Israeli conflict; efforts to absorb new waves of immigration and to deal with questions of ethnicity; and the roles of religion and secularism in Israeli society.  We will draw on a broad range of material, including print media, films, and YouTube clips.  

By the end of the course, students should have an insight into the complexity of Israeli society and the richness of Israeli culture, as well as an understanding of Israel’s role in Jewish life, the Middle East, and the world at large.
Credit Hours

Sample Syllabus: