Place, Memory and Myth in Contemporary Israeli Cinema

Zanger, Anat

This book examines several Israeli fictional and non-fictional films, and how their portrayal of landscape and territory provides a unique perspective on Jewish and Israeli identity. The book demonstrates how space in film is not only a 'container' for events in the plot, but an event in and of itself, since space and place are significant elements in the on-going negotiations regarding Jewish and Israeli identity. Films capture more than just the outward appearance of a place: they also record a web of unruly traces of economic, social, and political systems. Almost 2,000 years of Jewish exile created a gap between the idea of 'the Israeli place' and how the modern State of Israel has actualized that idea. Israeli cinema contains layered expressions of this issue, and, in this book, place and space function both as the subject matter of the analysis and as a theoretical tool. This innovative perspective will enable readers to discern themes significant both to contemporary culture (maps, borders, checkpoints, and military zones) and Jewish mythology (garden, desert, water, Jerusalem, and sacred space). Place, Memory and Myth in Contemporary Israeli Cinema includes references to Israeli literature and art, and it interweaves observations from the fields of visual studies, cultural studies, mythology, and Jewish thought to create a thought-provoking analysis. *** Given the number of important, critically recognized Israeli films, this is a welcome book. ...Zanger's attention to the place of minorities--including women, Mizrahim, and Arabs--within Israel greatly enchances the book's timely appeal. Recommended. - Choice, Vol. 50, No. 08, April 2013

286 pages

Copyright: 6/21/2012