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Jewish History, Jewish Religion - New Edition: The Weight of Three Thousand Years (Get Political) Paperback – September 20, 2008


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Jewish History, Jewish Religion - New Edition: The Weight of Three Thousand Years (Get Political) + Jewish Fundamentalism In Israel: New Introduction by Norton Mezvinsky (Pluto Middle Eastern Studies S) + Open Secrets: Israeli Foreign and Nuclear Policies (Film/Fiction; 2)
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Product Details

  • Series: Get Political (Book 5)
  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Pluto Press; Second Edition, New Edition edition (September 20, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0745328407
  • ISBN-13: 978-0745328409
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 5.1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #783,979 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

'Shahak subjects the whole history of Orthodoxy ... to a hilarious and scrupulous critique.' --Christopher Hitchens, The Nation
 
'The voice of reason is alive and well, and in Israel, of all places. Shahak is the latest - if not the last - of the great prophets.’ --Gore Vidal
 
'The future of the Palestinian people would have looked much brighter if there had been more Israelis like Shahak ... An outstanding personality.' --The Jerusalem Times

About the Author

Israel Shahak was a resident of the Warsaw Ghetto and a survivor of Bergen-Belsen. He arrived in Palestine in 1945 and lived there until his death in 2001. He was an outspoken critic of the state of Israel and a human rights activist. He was also the author of the highly acclaimed Jewish Fundamentalism in Israel (Pluto Press 1999) and Jewish History, Jewish Religion (Pluto Press 1994).

Customer Reviews

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I encourage everyone to read this book.
Phil Renteria
"The Black Book of Communism" makes for a hefty companion book to all of the above titles.
Sarasvatia
This book is superb, short, and pretty easy to read.
2ndamendmentman78

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Phil Renteria on December 18, 2011
Format: Paperback
This is truly a book that if every person on earth read, the world would be a different place.

Were everyone to read "Mein Kompf" I don't think many people would change their opinions on anything.

Dr. Shahak clearly illustrates the insanity of the cult of Talmudism. Religious Judaism is essentially a totalitarian society where every aspect of life is dictated by the Rabbis, many of whom fail to live up to any decent standards of fundamental morality. Dr. Shahak clearly illustrates why this cult thrives so much in closed societies and why the cult constantly desires to recreate closed societies where these Rabbis have absolute control over their followers.

I don't like religious fundamentalism of any stripe, but it seems clear that far too often this sect gets a complete pass.

I encourage everyone to read this book. You will not be disappointed.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Peter J. Piaseckyj on October 8, 2010
Format: Paperback
I couldn't resist reading this book. My three favorite American intellectuals Noam Chomsky, Edward W. Said and Gore Vidal have in one way or another recommended it. This in itself is high praise.

I find Israel Shahak's book a spring of fresh water in an arid intellectual environment of disinformation, propaganda and outright intellectual intimidation. For me Shahak is in the same mold as Jewish Prophets of old, warning Israel against a new catastrophe.

I do not pretend to the intellectual heights of Shahak. I can only judge the accuracy of the book by comparing it to areas where I do have expertise, namely the history, as it pertains to the Lithuanian, Polish, Russian and Austro-Hungarian Empires. The only portion of the book I found lacking was Shahak's knowledge of Petlura's government of Ukraine during the First World War.

When I sent Shahak a short article about Petlura from a Symposium "Ukrainian & Jews" he responded in a letter to me dated June 1, 1999, quote..."I am sorry for my mistake about the regime of Petlura. Your evidence, especially the translated documents, is very persuasive and I accept it. If possible I will change the next editions" Jewish History, Jewish religion" accordingly."...unquote.

I found Shahak's book made me understand portions of the Bible which I had difficulty understanding. It provided the cultural context for an intellectual conundrum that I had in regard to the Old Testament.

The two conundrums are the ethnic cleansing condoned by God of the Canaanites in Deuteronomy and the other was the dialogue between Jesus and the Canaanite women in Mathew 15:21-28, where he replies , quote..."I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel."...unquote.
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Sarasvatia on June 9, 2010
Format: Paperback
This book will merit either 5 stars, given by people without an agenda and who care to advance human understanding of the past and its mistakes. Or an obvious 1 (for lack of a 0, by the other end of the spectrum).

Consider that this book was written by an Israeli Jew whose family had lived for generations in a Jewish ghetto in Poland. Prof. Shahak had survived the Holocaust and elected to settle in Israel where he lived out his life. Prof. Shahak, together with historian Ilan Pappe ("The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine") and prof. Shlomo Sand ("The Invention of the Jewish People") are smart, progressive, well-educated members of Israeli academia who understand that the present course of Israeli politics is untenable. These authors are the soul and conscience of humanity that separate and protect us from degenerating into the abyss of the primitive. Perhaps, extinction.

"The Black Book of Communism" makes for a hefty companion book to all of the above titles.
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20 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Obi-Wan Kenobi on November 29, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Shahak is a courageous man for going against the conventional wisdom and speaking out for human rights for all. His eloquent thesis in this book gives him the moral authority to speak out on racism and racial superiority, easily wresting this mantle from the likes of Eli Weasel, whose shrill weasel words of 'Never again!' only apply to Jews. Shahak has the wisdom to understand that the Iraeli state's treatment of non-Jews as 3rd class citizens undermines the legitimacy of the state, which could lead to its dissolution.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Kiwireviewer on March 18, 2011
Format: Paperback
This book should be required reading in all schools and universities, and indeed legislatures! Written by a learned Jew (who is therefore able to say much that would not be permitted these days by a non jew), the book reveals much about the past and present nature of Judaism. Many historical and contemporary issues become clearer, once the real nature of Judaism is explained. In particular, much is revealed that cannot easily be found in non Hebrew language publications.

Other related books well worth reading are "The Invention of the Jewish People", by Professor Shlomo Sand, and "The Holocaust Industry", by Dr. Norman Finkelstein. Both written by respected and learned Jews, and so worth paying attention to, given the subject matter.

A parallel book on Islam is "Twenty Three Years", by Ali Dashti.

The last sentence of Shahak's book reads: "Although the struggle against antisemitism (and of all other forms of racism) should never cease, the struggle against Jewish chauvinism and exclusivism, which must include a critique of classical Judaism, is now of equal or greater importance."

Strong stuff!

Read the book and you will see what Professor Shahak is getting at.
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