The Hero and His Shadow introduces a psychological perspective on the history, development and present myths of Israeli society. Erel Shalit focuses on the actualization of the Zionist myth, which depended on a small group of individuals to transform the idea into matter by merging personal identity with collective idea. He finds that this process emanates from the close proximity of the life of the individual and the life of the collective in Israel. Shalit searches for the psychological relationships and motivations of the people of Israel as they evolved from a movement into a nation of people guided by similar ideals. Shalit also explores the psychological consequences of Israel's wars, from independence to the present war of terror, from a personal and a psychoanalytic perspective, with social examples and clinical vignettes. Recognizing the use of the images of the pioneer-farmer, the guardsman, and the warrior, which became admired hero-ideals, he delves into the shadow side of the guiding myths of modern Israel, such as Peace vs. Greater Israel. Here he found feelings of hubris, weakness, arrogance, and despair.
The mythological background of the archetypal struggle between Isaac and Ishmael, and the relationship between Jerusalem and the archetypal images of Wholeness and Satan are examined. Shalit exposes those aspects of past and present myths, which normally are repressed and left in the background.
Publisher: University Press of America
Number of pages: 212
Weight: 276 g
Dimensions: 216 x 140 x 16 mm
Edition: Revised edition