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Not the Enemy
Author: Rachel Shabi

ISBN: 9780300167696
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 274
Published: 17 June 2010
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 19.7 x 12.9 x 2.9
Description:
'Shabi's important book is a wake-up call to modern Israeli society' Jewish Chronicle Mention Israel and internal conflict, and most people immediately think of the seemingly insoluble Palestinian problem. However, as Rachel Shabi explains in this acclaimed book, there is another crucial division within Israeli society: between Ashkenazi Jews, whose families come from Europe, and Sephardic or Mizrahi Jews, who come from the Arab countries of the Middle East. Herself from an Iraqi Jewish family, Shabi explores the history of this relationship, tracing it back to the first days of the new state of Israel. In a society desperate to identify itself with Europe, immigrants who spoke Arabic and followed Middle Eastern customs were seen as inferior. Sixty years later, such prejudices are still in force. As Shabi demonstrates, Mizrahis are strikingly less successful than Ashkenazis, condemned, often, to substandard education, low-quality housing and mockery for their accents, tastes and lifestyles. Not only does this damage Mizrahi lives and hopes; it also reflects a wider Israeli rejection of the Middle East and its culture that makes it impossible for Israel ever to become integrated with...

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