History, Politics, and Nationalism in Ireland and Israel: Legacies of 1922 and 1948
In 2004, David Cesarani wrote: ‘history weighs more heavily on Israel and plays a greater role in public life than is probably the case for any other country.’ This chapter focuses on the relationship between nationalism, academic history, and popular understandings of history regarding the founding myths of the Republic of Ireland and the State of Israel, contained in the histories of the Irish War of Independence and the Israeli War of Independence. Two important incidents happened during the conflicts which have since become symbolic: the ‘massacres’ that happened in the Bandon Valley in 1922 and Tantura in northern Israel/Palestine in 1948. This chapter brings to light the unexpected symmetry of the controversies and the complex and usually fraught relationship between nationalism and historical research that continues to shape public debate on history in both Dublin and Tel Aviv.
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