The State of Israel as a Modern Jewish Enterprise: An Introduction


The State of Israel as a Modern Jewish Enterprise : An Introduction | Yair Tzaban In the introduction to New Jewish Time : Jewish Culture in a Secular Age : An Encyclopedic View , Yirmiahu Yovel explained : The term “ culture ” is not limited to literature , art , music , theater , architecture , and the like , despite their centrality within it . Culture also encompasses philosophy and public ideology , historical memory , the use of language , daily life , politics , symbols , institutions , dress , entertainment , leisure time habits , and in short - whatever people create collectively , and which , in turn , influences their interpretations of the world and interpersonal relations . This article , however , will limit itself to the main processes and products and the individuals connected with them . In this spirit , this encyclopedic project ends with a section devoted in its entirety to the State of Israel and the Yishuv that preceded it . The State of Israel important center for Hebrew culture , it was also the de facto capital of the entire Yishuv in its struggle for political independence . During the first year after the establishment of the State of Israel , Tel Aviv served as its political capital , where the Knesset first sat and from which the War of Independence was waged . In 1949 the country’s institutions moved to Jerusalem , but Tel Aviv retained its standing as the country’s cultural capital . The two cities , Tel Aviv and Jaffa ( where only a few thousand Arabs remained following the War of Independence ) , were merged into a single city : Tel Aviv-Jaffa . The new immigrants who settled in Jaffa’s abandoned houses were refugees from Europe who knew nothing of their previous lives . Tel Aviv experienced the years of mass immigrant absorption , the tzenah austerity regime , crises , and wars , and remained Israel’s commercial , business , cultural , and artistic capital , a city of frivolity and , when necessary , a city that bore the burden . At the beginning of the twenty-first century , over one million people live in greater Tel Aviv , and when one includes the nearby cities , this figure comes to almost two million . The young city , that has just passed its centennial , is no longer a city on sand dunes . Its houses have roots deep in the earth , and skyscrapers are rising in and around it . And yet Tel Aviv is still a secular city , a city of life and potentialities , a city that rejects sanctity and dreams of a heavenly Redemption . 1 Rural farming settlements ( colonies ) . 2 Sing . moshav ; cooperative smallholder's villages in Eretz Israel , combining some of the features of both cooperative and private farming . 3 Rural collective settlements . 4 The Jewish community in pre-State Eretz Israel .

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