For a deeper understanding of Israel and the region

Fathom Highlight | When does criticism of Israel become something darker? / 16 May / 2016

With the UK Labour Party’s enquiry into antisemitism about to begin, this week’s Fathom Highlight is timely and, we hope, helpful. Professor Robert Fine reviews Ken Marcus’s The Definition of Anti-Semitism, while Keith Kahn-Harris examines Svenja Gertheiss’s study of intra-Jewish conflicts over Israel in the UK and elsewhere in the Diaspora. To round off our quarterly Fathom Review of Books, Jonathan Rynhold praises Colin Shindler’s The Rise of the Israeli Right: From Odessa to Hebron as a valuable source for explaining the Israeli Right’s success in attracting the support of the moderate centrist electorate which still holds the key to Israeli political power.

Our voice of the week is Fathom editor Professor Alan Johnson talking at length to BBC Newsnight about left-wing antisemitism, its historical roots and contemporary forms and where the line is that separates criticism of Israel from something darker.

Book Review│The Definition of Anti-Semitism

by Robert Fine

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The word ‘antisemitism’ currently has a strange aura around it. There is a curious reluctance on the part of some people to use it even on occasions when it seems unequivocally appropriate – like, for example, the murder of Jewish children and a Jewish teacher in a Jewish school in Toulouse in 2012, committed avowedly ‘to avenge Palestinian children.’ The word itself sometimes seems to have an almost uncanny quality – a ‘killer word’ as some cynics have put it,...
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Voice of the Week

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Kahn-Harris

Book Review | Diasporic Activism in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
by Keith Kahn-Harris

One of the most striking features of intra-Jewish conflicts over Israel in the UK and elsewhere in the Diaspora is the air of incomprehension which...
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Book Review | The Rise of the Israeli Right: From Odessa to Hebron
by Jonathan Rynhold

This book will serve as the definitive history of the Israeli Right in English. Building on his previous works on the subject,[1] Shindler has produced...
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