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A History of Zionism: From the French Revolution to the Establishment of the State of Israel Hardcover – July 1, 1997


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 639 pages
  • Publisher: Fine Communications (July 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1567311008
  • ISBN-13: 978-1567311006
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.4 x 1.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #162,536 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Muslim World Book Review: "Going into minute detail, the present book under review is endlessly fascinating, most instructive and enlightening, and is the best-written, most thoroughly researched and convincing presentation of the Zionist case the reviewer has thus far come across, It should be required reading for all Muslims who wish to understand in depth the tragedy of Palestine." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Inside Flap

Discusses the European background, the prehistory of the movement, five decades of Zionist activities, and ends with the establishement of the state of Israel. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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I've just started reading the book but it is a scholarly and academically written work.
Milo
In sum, this book is an informative, well-written and fair-minded work on a sensitive subject, written by a master scholar.
"aiwac"
The two events were in no way comparable, and Laqueur basically lied about the details of the latter.
Indiana Reviewer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By "aiwac" on November 10, 2003
Format: Hardcover
If you must read only one book on Zionism, let this be it. Walter Laqueur, internationally renowned historian, has created a masterpiece that has stood the test of time (it was originally written over 30 years ago!), and has become one of the standard works on the subject, alongside Shlomo Avineri's The Making of Modern Zionism and Hertzberg's The Zionist Idea.
The book is exactly what it says it is-a history of Zionism from the French Revolution to the establishment of the State of Israel, making use of a wide range of primary and secondary sources in various languages.
Laqueur gives a rich and penetrating description of the Jewish communities in both Western and Eastern Europe, describing the various forces that tugged at the Jews during this period - anti-semitism, an increased desire to assimilate on the one hand and a growing sense of self-pride in Jewish heritage on the other. It was against this background that Zionism burst onto the scene in the late 19th century.
Laqueur gives an interesting, at times funny and at times tragic, of the Zionist movement and its members as they struggled to achieve their goals of Jewish self-determination in the former Land of Israel against great odds, sometimes achieving great success (the Balfour Declaration), and sometimes facing disasterous crises (the Holocaust and the destruction of European Jewry). Laqueur demonstrates that all this was done while the Zionists were a minority, with a largely indifferent and even hostile Jewish community in some countries (especially in Britain and Germany, although they enjoyed widespread support in Eastern Europe), refusing to foot the bill for what seemed a fantastic project at the time.
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31 of 36 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 17, 1999
Format: Hardcover
As one of the century's great historians, how fortunate we are that the German-born Laqueur spent his formative scholarly years in Eretz Israel as a journalist and researcher. This landmark work is very sympathetic to religious Orthodoxy and its significant relationship in the evolution of modern political Zionism. Its strength is in the study of religious and political Zionism within the European milieu.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By J. A Magill TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 20, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Laquer's History of Zionism is an indispensable work about the origins of the Jewish state. Wherever you stand on Israel, here is a thought provoking and well-researched text that is definitive on the subject. If you are someone who dislikes Israel, you should at least read it to understand how Israel developed and learn about Zionist self-perception.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By john thames on February 25, 2013
Format: Paperback
Walter Lacquer's "History of Zionism" is a fairly objective history written by a historian who confesses his own bias. That is certainly to his credit. The book is a wealth of little known information and can be reccomended for that reason. As Lacquer concedes, the Zionist leaders deliberately disregarded the Arab population of Palestine from inception, either treating them as of no consequence or as an obstacle to be removed at the first opportunity. The vague Zionist promises of "equal treatment" were duplicitous verbiage, intended only to deceive. Lacquer also makes very clear the socialist nature of Zionism in its founding days and its not inconsiderable overlap with the Jewish Marxists of Russia, who differed with the Zionists over Communism in Palestine or Communim in Russia.

Lacquer's main defense of Zionism is success. It succeeded - therefore it is. At no point, however, does he try to cover up what the Zionists actually did - dispossess and expel the Arabs. Thus, his book has basic scholarly merit - even if one disagrees with his basic ideological position. Subject to that reservation, the book can be recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Green Eagle on December 25, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is one of the most comprehensive, balanced, objective pieces of literature I have ever read on any piece of history in my entire life. It is a shame that this book has not been more on the forefront for must reads on this piece of history. As a history buff on this topic and Middle Eastern history, it can often become frustrating to read any book on the subject due to the obvious partiality. Despite its lengty nature, 600 packed pgs, I feel reinvigorated. I highly recommend this and consider this a first stop must-read on this segment of history.
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