Dan Bar-On's psychosocial approach sees identity as dynamic, constructed in contra-distinction to various 'Others'. Drawing parallels to other societies, he looks most closely at identity formation among Israelis, or more precisely, among the largely secular Jews from European lands who formed the hegemonic backbone of Israeli society. Case studies and analysis depict various stages in identity formation, as do 'personal windows' onto the author as he experienced these stages. Others such as Diaspora Jews, Jews from Muslim countries, and Arabs represent repressed aspects of the collective self. Monolithic identity disintegrates over time, in ways that are often confusing and painful. The perception of threat often creates a 'neo-monolithic backlash'. Yet the book holds out the possibility of a constructive dialogue, internal and among groups in society, that will give rise to a better-integrated and more inclusive identity construction.
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Number of pages: 236
Weight: 320 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 13 mm
'... reflective, honest, and engaging ... I found Bar-On's approach to understanding collective identity through a psychological lens particularly illuminating.' The Journal of Israeli History
"...The Others Within Us gives the reader meaningful insights into Israeli society..."
--MKL, Jewish Book World, Spring 5769/2009
"Bar-On delivers a very interesting if not entirely original critique of Ashkenazi Jewish identity formation while also promoting a hopeful agenda for the future...I found the book to be entirely accessible...Those who are curious but know little about Israel will find this an engaging study..."
---Jasmin Habib, PsycCRITIQUES