Coming in October is Shlomo Sand’s controversial new book The Invention of the Jewish People. Translated into more than a dozen languages, a bestseller across the world, this is the first time that the book has been published in English.
Shlomo Sand has written a remarkable book. In cool, scholarly prose he has, quite simply, normalised Jewish history. In place of the implausible myth of a unique nation with a special destiny – expelled, isolated, wandering and finally restored to its rightful home – he has reconstructed the history of the Jews and convincingly reintegrated that history into the general history of humankind. The self-serving and mostly imaginary Jewish past that has done so much to provoke conflict in the present is revealed, like the past of so many other nations, to be largely an invention. Anyone interested in understanding the contemporary Middle East should read this book. Tony Judt
There is a website devoted to the book – keep a close eye on it for news of events (Shlomo will be visiting Britain in November), extracts from the book, interviews with the author and the debate that the book is creating.