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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures : Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies

Undergraduate Course: The Arab-Israeli Conflict: Nations in Collision (IMES10072)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Literatures, Languages and Cultures CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThe Arab-Israeli conflict stands as one of the most enduring and, some argue, most intractable political issues in the Middle East today. This course offers a critical examination of the history of struggle in Palestine between the Zionist movement and the local Palestinian population from its beginnings in the late Ottoman period until the present day, that has seen the establishment and expansion of the state of Israel, the ongoing dispossession and of the Palestinians, and a record of failed political solutions proposed to address the issue.
Course description 1 Introduction: Palestine at the end of the 19th century
2 The Zionist Movement: Ideology and Settlement
3 Nationalisms in Collision: The Mandate Period
4 1948: Independence and Nakba
5 Victory and Defeat: The Harvest of 1967
6 Representing the Palestinian Struggle: The PLO and its Rivals
7 Shades of Zion: Israeli State and Society
8 Israel-Palestine: Guest Topic
9 The Road to Oslo
10 The Peace Process Bogged Down

This course offers a critical examination of the encounter between the Zionist movement and the local population in Palestine, from its beginnings in the late Ottoman period until the present day. We will explore the changing relationship between these two agents and chart it as we cover the impact and legacy of the British mandate, the critical events of 1948 and 1967 that respectively saw the establishment and consolidation of the state of Israel and the continuing dispossession of the Palestinians, and the ongoing attempts to contrive a political solution. We will do this by investigating primary sources and secondary scholarship, both in text and audio-visual media, to analyse the terrain of a deeply politicised historiography that has been responsible for the established narrative and sought to critique it.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Before enrolling students on this course, you are asked to contact the IMES Secretary to ensure that a place is available (e-mail
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 courses in a suitable subject area at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Describe and explain the main events of the Arab-Israeli conflict from the late 19th century to the present.
  2. Become familiar with the secondary literature on the subject.
  3. Be able to critically analyse primary documents.
  4. Possess a critical awareness of the complexities of the conflict and the political interests implicated in it.
Reading List
Agha, Hussein and Robert Malley, 'Camp David: The Tragedy of Errors', incl. in 'The Palestinian-Israeli Camp David Negotiations and Beyond', Journal of Palestine Studies Vol. 31, No. 1 (Autumn 2001) 62-85.

Anderson, Perry. 'Scurrying towards Bethlehem' New Left Review 10 (July-August 2001), 5-30. Afshar, Haleh (ed.) Women and Politics in the Third World (London and New York: Routledge, 1996).

Brown, Nathan, Palestinian Politics after the Oslo Accords, University of California Press, 2003.

Chomsky, Noam. Fateful Triangle: the United States, Israel and the Palestinians, (London, Pluto, 1st published 1983 but use updated edition 1999).

Cohen, Hillel, Good Arabs, The Israeli Security Agencies and the Israeli Arabs, 1948-1967, UC press, 2011.

Davidson, Lawrence, America's Palestine: popular and official perceptions from Balfour to Israeli statehood, Gainesville, Fla. : University Press of Florida, 2001.

Dolphin, Ray, The West Bank Wall: Unmaking Palestine, London: Pluto, 2006

Doumani, Beshara B., 'Rediscovering Ottoman Palestine: Writing Palestinians into History', Journal of Palestine Studies 21 no. 2 (Winter 1992) 5-28.

Doumani, Beshara Rediscovering Palestine : merchants and peasants in Jabal Nablus, 1700-1900, Berkeley ; London : University of California Press, 1995

Finkelstein, Norman G. Image and Reality of the Israel-Palestine Conflict (London: Verso, 1995)

Goldberg, David J. To The Promised Land: A History of Zionist Thought (Penguin Books, 1996)

Gorny, Yosef, Zionism and the Arabs, 1882-1948: a study of ideology, Oxford, 1987

Gresh, Alain. The PLO: the struggle within; towards an independent Palestinian state, (revised and updated edition, London: Zed, 1988).

Hillel Cohen, The Rise and Fall of Arab Jerusalem, Palestinian Politics and the City since 1967, Routledge, 2011.

Hiltermann, Joost R. Behind the Intifada: Labor and Women's movements in the Occupied Territories (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991).

Jamal, Amal, Arab Minority Nationalism in Israel, Routledge, 2011.

Reinharz, Jehuda and Anita Shapira (eds), Essential Papers on Zionism, NY UP, 1996

Kaleh, Hala. The Intifada: the Palestinian uprising in the West Bank and Gaza Strip; a bibliography of books and articles, 1987-1992 (Oxford: Middle East Libraries Committee, 1993).

Karmi, Ghada, 'The One-State Solution: An Alternative Vision for Israeli-Palestinian Peace', Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 40, no. 2 (Winter 2011)

Kazi, Hamida. 'Palestinian women and the national liberation movement: a social perspective' Khamsin 13, Women in the Middle East (London: Zed Press, 1987).

Kenneth W. Stein, 'Rural Change and Peasant Destitution: Contributing Causes to the Arab Revolt in Palestine 1936-39', in Farhad Kazemi and John Waterbury 9eds), Peasants and Politics in the Modern Middle East, Florida International UP: Miami, 1991.

Khalidi, Rashid, Palestinian Identity: the Construction of Modern National Consciousness (Columbia University Press, 1997).

Kimmerling, Baruch and Joel S. Migdal. The Palestinian People: a history. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2003.

Lewis, Geoffrey, Balfour and Weizmann: the Zionist, the Zealot and the emergence of Israel, London; New York : Continuum, 2009.

Lockman, Zachary, Comrades and Enemies, Comrades and enemies : Arab and Jewish workers in Palestine, 1906-1948 Berkeley ; London: University of California Press, 1996.

Lockman, Zachary and Joel Beinin (eds.), Intifada: the Palestinian uprising against Israeli occupation (London: I.B. Tauris, 1990).

Mahler, G. and Alden Mahler, The Arab-Israeli Conflict, Routledge, 2009.

Makdisi, Saree, Palestine Inside Out: An Everyday Occupation, London: WN Norton, 2010

Morris, Benny, 1948 and after: Israel and the Palestinians, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1990.

Morris, Benny, The birth of the Palestinian refugee problem, 1947-1949, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1987.

Morris, Benny, The birth of the Palestinian refugee problem revisited, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004.

Morris, Benny, Righteous victims: a history of the Zionist-Arab conflict, 1881-2001 New York: Vintage Books, 2001.

Morris, Benny, The road to Jerusalem: Glubb Pasha, Palestine and the Jews, London :I.B. Tauris, 2002.

Morris, Benny, 1948: a history of the first Arab-Israeli war, New Haven, Conn.; London : Yale University Press, 2008.

Morris, Benny. Righteous Victims: A History of the Zionist-Arab conflict, 1881-2001. New York: Vintage Books, 2001.

Pappe, Ilan, A History of Modern Palestine: one land, two peoples, 2nd ed., Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006.

Pappe, Ilan, The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine, London: One World, 2007

Pappé, Ilan, The Rise and Fall of a Palestinian Dynasty, The Husaynis, 1700-1948, UC Press, 2011

Pappe, Ilan (ed.), The Israel/ Palestine Question: A Reader, 2nd edition, 2007.

Peled, Yoav. 'Profits or Glory' New Left Review 29 (Sept/Oct 2004). Gives an explanation and critique of Israeli involvement in Oslo.

Reinhart, Tanya, The Road Map to Nowhere: Israel/Palestine since 2003, London: Verso, 2006

Robinson, Glenn E. Building a Palestinian state: the incomplete revolution, Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1997.

Ross, Dennis, The Missing Peace: the inside story of the fight for Middle East peace, New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2004.

Roy, Sara Failing peace: Gaza and the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, London: Pluto, 2007.

Roy, Sara. 'Why Peace Failed: An Oslo Autopsy' in Current History (January 2002), 8-16.

Said, Edward W., The question of Palestine (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1980).

_______, Peace and its Discontents: Gaza-Jericho, 1993-1995, 1st ed London: Vintage, 1995.

_______. The politics of dispossession: the struggle for Palestinian self-determination 1969-1994 (Vintage, 1995).

Sayigh, Yezid. 'Sovereignty and security of the Palestinian state' Journal of Palestine Studies 24 (summer 1995) 5-19.

Sayigh, Yezid. Armed Struggle and the Search for state: the Palestinian national movement 1949-1993 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997)

Schiff, Ze'ev and Ehud Ya'ari, Intifada: the Palestinian uprising - Israel's third front (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1989).

Schneer, Jonathan. The Balfour Declaration: the origins of the Arab-Israeli conflict, London: Bloomsbury, 2010.

Shafir, Gershon, Land, Labour and the Origins of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict 1882-1914, Cambridge UP, 1989.

Shahak, Israel, Jewish fundamentalism in Israel, London : Pluto Press, 1999.

Shlaim, Avi. The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World (London: Penguin Books, 2000).

Shlomo Sand, The Invention of the Jewish People, Verso, 2010.

Slater, Jerome. 'What Went Wrong? The Collapse of the Israeli-Palestinian Peace Process' in Political Science Quarterly Vol 116 No. 2 (Summer 2001), 171-199.

Smith, Charles D.. Palestine and the Arab-Israeli Conflict. New York: St Martin's Press, 1992.

Tessler, Mark, A History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Bloomington, Ind.: Indiana University Press, 1994.

Theodor Herzl, The Jewish state: an attempt at a modern solution of the Jewish question, 1972

Tibawi, Abdul Latif. Anglo-Arab relations and the question of Palestine, 1914-1921, London : Luzac, 1977.

Usher, Graham, Palestine in Crisis: the struggle for peace and political independence after Oslo, London: Pluto Press, 1995.

Usher, Graham. Dispatches from Palestine: the rise and fall of the Oslo Peace process (London: Pluto Press, 1999).

White, Ben, Israeli Apartheid, New York: Pluto, 2009.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills 1. Structure and communicate ideas effectively both orally and in written form

2. Manage time and work to deadlines

3. Participate constructively in groups

4. Assess and respond to the ideas of others

5. Work independently and be self-reliant

6. Find information and use information technology
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Anthony Gorman
Tel: (0131 6)50 4183
Course secretaryMrs Anne Budo
Tel: (0131 6)50 4161
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