The Creation of Israeli Arabic Security and Politics in Arabic Studies in Israel

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2014-10-17
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
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This book sheds light on the ways in which the ongoing Arab–Israeli conflict has shaped Arabic language instruction in Jewish-Israeli society. It explores how 'Israeli Arabic' has been constructed by means of a closed network of Jewish-Israeli actors focused on political and security considerations rather than on a desire for open communication. The book argues that 'Israeli Arabic' has evolved as a silent, passive language that gave its users a limited set of language skills, especially decoding texts, with an emphasis on newspapers. This has enabled its students to observe the Arab world but not to interact with Arab people in general and the Palestinian citizens of Israel more particularly. The interdisciplinary nature of the book gives a unique perspective on Jewish-Israeli society and its production and reproduction of knowledge in the field of Arabic, and would therefore be of great interest to academics and researchers on security and Middle Eastern studies as well as those specialising in language and linguistics.

Author Biography

Yonatan Mendel is a Research Associate at the Centre of Islamic Studies at the University of Cambridge, UK, and a researcher at The Rosenzweig Minerva Research Center, Faculty of Humanities, at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel. He is also the Director of Projects of the Mediterranean Unit at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute, Israel. His research area is the sociology of language, specifically, the influences of political conflict on the study of, and attitude toward, a language and the way in which research on language contributes to understanding deep social and political processes.

Table of Contents

Preface: Arabic, Security and Me
Introduction: Arabic and Security in Israel
1. Rooting Security in Arabic Soil: When Zionism Met Arabic
2. Whose Language is it, anyway? Arabic in Israeli-Jewish Schools, 1948-1967
3. Recruiting Arabic to War: The 1967 and 1973 Wars' Influence on Arabic Studies in Israeli-Jewish Schools
4. Israel's Army of Arabists: 1976 and Beyond
5. Giv?at-?avivah and Ulpan-?A?iva: Arabic Studies independent of the Ministry of Education


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