NATIONAL JEWISH BOOK AWARD 2012 FINALIST WINNER
in the category of
Modern Jewish Thought and Experience
by Bonna Devora Haberman
Published by Urim Publications
Hardcover, 191 pages
ISBN 13: 978-965-524-124-2
Rereading Israel: The Spirit of the Matter refreshes current conversations about Israel, while setting aside vitriolic debates and worn postures. This book opens Jewish sources to interpret Israel in critical, innovative, and inspiring ways. Rereading Israel presents an opportunity to engage ethically, intellectually, and emotionally -- challenging us to apply our finest resources to grapple honestly and creatively with land and people, history, text, and spirit. Especially when Israel is embattled, this book peels open fruitful and compelling perspectives.
Rereading Israel invites readers into a deep exploration of our roles and relationships to the destiny of a profoundly human and unfinished sacred project.
About the Author:
Bonna Devora Haberman has taught at the Hebrew University,
at Harvard University and at Brandeis University, where she founded
and directed the Mistabra Institute for Textual Activism, addressing
difficult social problems with creative strategies and performance arts.
Having grown up in Canada, Bonna studied in the US and England,
earning her doctorate in Ethics and Education at the University of
London. Dr. Haberman's work in and out of the academy fuses critical
interpretation of texts and culture with passion for social betterment.
She moved to Israel in 1986, where she helped initiate a movement
for women’s public participation and leadership in Judaism and religious
pluralism, "Women of the Wall." She has published widely in
scholarly and popular venues. Among her endeavors, Bonna co-directs
YTheater, an Israeli-Palestinian community theater project. Bonna,
her spouse, and five children live in Israel.
Praise for Rereading Israel:
"Bonna Devora Haberman's highly original book examines modern Israel - its achievements and its travails - through the prism of the religious texts and traditions that sustained the Jewish nation in exile. At once brisk and spiritual, Rereading Israel finds inspiration in those sources for the construction of a mature, fulfilled Jewish nation state."
-David Horovitz, founding editor of the online newspaper The Times of Israel, previously editor-in-chief of The Jerusalem Post
"Wow! This is a beautiful and profound book. Using a symphony of sources, expertly traveling between modern Western concepts and traditional Jewish texts, Bonna Devora Haberman brings new dimensions to our understanding and appreciation for Zionism. Showing how Zionism resolves tensions like the mind-body duality helps us see Zionism as it is - far beyond the headlines - a healing project for the Jewish people and humanity."
-Professor Gil Troy, McGill University, author of Why I Am a Zionist
"Rereading Israel: The Spirit of the Matter is a deeply learned, fluent case for a Zionism that is passionate, faithful and innovative all at once.
Neither stuffy nor superficial, this is a book to ignite those who will carry the Zionist dream into the future."
-David J. Wolpe, author of Why Faith Matters and rabbi of Sinai Temple, Los Angeles