By Noam Pianko

This present day, Zionism is known as a countrywide move whose fundamental ancient aim used to be the institution of a Jewish nation. notwithstanding, Zionism's organization with nationwide sovereignty used to be no longer foreordained. Zionism and the Roads no longer Taken uncovers the idea of 3 key interwar Jewish intellectuals who outlined Zionism's significant undertaking as difficult the version of a sovereign geographical region: historian Simon Rawidowicz, spiritual philosopher Mordecai Kaplan, and political theorist Hans Kohn. even supposing their versions differed, every one of those 3 thinkers conceived of a more effective and moral paradigm of nationwide team spirit that was once now not tied to a sovereign nation. convalescing those roads no longer taken is helping us to reimagine Jewish id and collectivity, previous, current, and destiny. (2011)

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The expansion of the definition of American identity to include a range of characteristics therefore challenged the possibility of alternative communal affiliations. S. politics spread into political practice through the contributions of such writers as Walter Croly, the editor of The New Republic. Croly’s highly influential 1909 work, The Promise of American Life (which Theodore Roosevelt used as the basis of his New Nationalism campaign in 1912), decried the moral and social ills brought about by American individualism.

Situated against the backdrop of the twentieth-century narrative of European destruction, state-seeking Zionism emerges as the most obvious response for Jewish nationalists seeking emancipation following the cataclysm of the war. From a post-Holocaust vantage point, the events of World War I could easily be interpreted as marking the first convulsion of an unavoidable process that would lead to the destruction of European Jewry fewer than thirty years later. The effects of Jews’ marginal position as outsiders during the war underscored Theodor Herzl’s analysis of the failure of Jewish integration within Europe and bolstered his claim that Jewish normalization demanded a Jewish state.

At the same time, nationalism severely restricted acceptable categories of difference within the polity to subordinate categories of identity (such as religion) that reinforced the primacy of national solidarity over other collective ties. The philosopher Charles Taylor has analyzed the relationship between nationalism and modernity, describing this force as intimately linked to the rationale of the nation-state paradigm. ”7 In order for the state to achieve its economic, social, and political objectives, it must reinforce some degree of national conformity.

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