Over the next several months Fathom will publish articles, interviews and book reviews to mark the 100th anniversary of the Mandate for Palestine.
Writers include Tom Segev on David Ben-Gurion; Liam Hoare on the literature of the Mandate; Donna Robinson Divine on Abba Ahimeir and Zionist Ideology; Oren Kessler on the Peel Commission; Israel Medad on the pivotal year of 1920; Ben Reiff on how the bi-nationalists tried and why they failed; Alan Johnson on Ilan Pappe and the concept of ‘Zionist Settler Colonialism’; Michael Weiger on Isaac Danzinger’s sculpture ‘Nimrod’; John Strawson and Ronnie Fraser on aspects of the British left’s response to the Mandate and the creation of Israel; Philip Earl Steele on the relationship between the steep post-WWI decline of Evangelicalism in the UK and the waning British support for the Mandate’s stated purpose; and more.
After capturing Jerusalem on 9 December 1917, Britain was granted the Mandate for Palestine on 25 April 1920 at the San Remo Conference, a decision approved by the League of Nations on 24 July 1922. When Britain withdrew just over a quarter century later, on 14 May 1948, David Ben-Gurion, soon to be the first Prime Minister of the Jewish State, was able to proclaim the Israeli Declaration of Independence, formally the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel.
How should we understand the Mandate period today? Fathom will be taking a fresh look at:
- The evolution of British policy, and the dynamics of cooperation and confrontation between the two communities in Palestine between 1920-1948;
- The evolution of – and divisions within – the Yishuv and the Palestinian National Movement, including studies of debates between leaders and strategic thinkers on both sides;
- The impact on British policy of British Christian Zionism, British philosemitism and British antisemitism during the Mandate;
- The bi-national vision of Brit Shalom and its failure;
- Examples of the remarkable art and literature of (and about) the Mandate period;
- Palestinian perspectives on the Mandate;
- The contribution to the understanding of the Mandate period made by Israel’s ‘post-Zionists’ and ‘new historians’;
- The framing concept of ‘Zionist settler colonialism’ and the claim of its partisans that Zionism and Israel’s founding are best understood as just another chapter in ‘the saga of European white settlement’;
- The critical reassessment of some seminal texts and some more recent academic works.
As the series will roll out over Spring and Summer of 2020 there is still an opportunity for writers to submit a proposal. The editors are looking for something innovative: a fresh perspective, a new angle of vision, a spotlight shone on hitherto understudied aspects and individuals and texts of the period, the use of hitherto unexamined archives.
Articles should run to 2000-4000 words while reviews will normally be in the 1500-2500 range.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com to pitch your idea in 10 lines or so. If accepted, we will agree a submission date between April and August 2020 with you.
Alan Johnson (Editor) firstname.lastname@example.org Neri Zilber email@example.com Sam Nurding firstname.lastname@example.org Calev Ben-Dor email@example.com James Sorene firstname.lastname@example.org