Elvis in Jerusalem by Tom Segev
Post-Zionism and the Americanization of Israel

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Synopsis

As the Middle East conflict enters its most violent phase, Tom Segev offers a lively, contentious polemic against cherished and rigid notions of Israel's national unity and culture.

In his many works of history, Tom Segev has challenged the entrenched understanding of crucial moments in Israel's past. Now, in a short, sharp, polemical book, Segev has turned his sights from Israeli history to confront some revered assumptions about the country today.

Drawing on personal experience as well as all kinds of artifacts from Israeli popular culture -- shopping malls, fast food, public art, television, religious kitsch -- Segev offers a controversial point of view: the sweeping Americanization of the country, rued by most, has had an extraordinarily beneficial influence, bringing not only McDonald's and Dunkin' Donuts but the virtues of pragmatism, tolerance, and individualism. And, in the fierce battle over the future of Zionism, Segev welcomes the diffusion of national identity and ideology that has taken place in the last decade as a harbinger of a new spirit of compromise and openness.

At a time of crisis, as Israelis and Palestinians retreat to their most embattled positions, Segev's colorful, provocative book is sure to spark heated debate.

 

About Tom Segev

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Tom Segev, who writes a weekly column in Ha'aretz, Israel's leading daily newspaper, is the author of The Seventh Million: The Israelis and the Holocaust and other pathbreaking books, including One Palestine, Complete, which was named one of the ten best books of 2000 by the New York Times Book Review. He lives in Jerusalem. www.doubleday.com
 
Published May 1, 2003 by Metropolitan Books. 181 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Religion & Spirituality. Non-fiction

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Publishers Weekly

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Segev's last book, One Palestine, Complete: Jews and Arabs Under the British Mandate, was a New York Times best book of 2000 and enjoyed bestseller status after September 11.

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