"...Yakobson and Rubinstein have written a thoughtful and provocative study that sheds real light on Israel's approach to civic equality, in the context of the behavior of other democracies. The book will be a valuable addition to courses on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Middle East politics, or liberal democratic theory and practice." -- H-Net Reviews (2010), Michael Galchinksy, Georgia State University
'...it is an important book, whose ideas deserve to be widely heard' - The Economist, 2008
'The book is not a traditional pro-Israel polemic in the sense that it does not extol Israeli behavior, but seeks to point out that, in its basic definition and goals, Israel is well within the norms of democratic practice. In Yakobson's words, while "every state is unique, Israel is not 'exceptional' in the negative sense. It is not an abnormal democracy."
The book includes chapters on Israel's establishment and the UN debates on partition in 1947-9, when the international community voted for a "Jewish state"; the views of the Zionist movement on the character of the future Jewish state and the rights of the Arab minority; international law, human and minority rights and their application in different democratic countries; religion and state in Western democracies; the relationship between nation-states and their national minorities; along with other issues that come up in the intellectual debate over Israel's legitimacy.
In dealing with the argument equating Zionism with colonialism - a favorite in both academia and Arab politics - the authors once again bring homegrown Israeli anti-Zionists into the ring. ' - The Jerusalem Post, 2008
'In a Sophisticated discussion of notions of citizenship, deeply informed by the new literature on multiculturalism, Yakobson and Rubinstein provide array of examples that belie Israel's exceptionalism' - SA Jewish Report, April 2009
'Israel and the Family of Nations is a timely and necessary book. It is scholarly but accessible and should provide a basis for intelligent debate about israel and for defending its institutions and foundations' - Seth J. Frantzman, Middle East Quarterly, Fall 2009
About the Author
Dr. Alexander Yacobson is a Senior lecturer in the history department of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel.
Prof. Amnon Rubinstein, is currently Provost and Dean of the Radzyner School of Law at the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) in Herzlia. He is a former Minister of Education and a regular contributor to Israseli Dailies.