Modernism and Zionism, 1st Edition by David Ohana (auth.)

By David Ohana (auth.)

Part of Palgrave's Modernism and ... sequence, Modernism and Zionism explores the connection among modernism and the Jewish nationwide ideology, the Zionist circulation, which used to be operative in all components of Jewish paintings and culture.

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Between the disturbances of 1929 and 1939, Tel Aviv, like other cities, knew seven years of economic growth, rapid construction and urban and cultural development. This was the contribution of the Fifth Aliyah (wave of immigration) to Palestine, and in particular of the immigration of Jews from Introduction 25 Germany who accelerated the process of the modernisation of Tel Aviv and made it into a metropolitan city. A modernistic visual revolution took place there for which the city engineer in the 1930s Yaakov Ben Sira and the architect Sharon were responsible.

He added that he was mesmerised by Thus Spake Zarathustra when he had read it at the age of seventeen: About two years after that [his liberation from the category of time by Kant] the other book took possession of me [emphasis added], a book that was, to be sure, the work of a philosopher but was not a philosophical book: Nietzsche’s Thus Spake Zarathustra. I say ‘took possession of me,’ for here a teaching did not simply and calmly confront me, but a willed and able – splendidly willed and splendidly able – utterance stormed up to and over me.

Unlike Nietzsche, who only operated on the philosophical level, Buber operated on four levels: the philosophical, the ideological, the theological and the political. Nietzsche was an atheist, Buber was a believer (Kaufmann, 1981); Nietzsche gave a central place to the sovereignty of the individual over his world, his self-creation, his self-sufficiency, while Buber stressed man’s relationship with his neighbour and his relationship with his God. Nietzsche exposed the manipulative structures of all ideologies and religions, while Buber was a Zionist to the core and a religious individual through and through.

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