The Arab-Palestinian community, which constitutes 20 percent of Israel’s population, is an ethnic minority living mainly in ethnically homogeneous cities and villages. Arab-Palestinian Society in the Israeli Political System offers a comprehensive, detailed examination of Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel within the Green Line in the twenty-first century. Rami Zeedan analyzes political trends, leadership, and the effects on Arab-Palestinian identity in Israel of recent changes, especially the 2015 legislative elections. The author also sheds light on the crisis and identifies the sources and relations to the local political structure in Arab localities in Israel. The book discusses the implications of the integration of an ethnic minority in an ethnic state and on the definition of Israel as “Jewish and Democratic.”
Lists of Tables
Lists of Figures
Chapter 1: Arabs in the Israeli Three Branches of Power
Chapter 2: Arab Identity and Political Trends in Israel
Chapter 3: Crisis in Arab-Palestinian Municipalities in Israel
About the Author
Zeedan's book is a mine of information and insightful interpretations of how the Palestinian-Arabs do local and national politics in Israel. Its provocative conclusion that Israel is an illiberal, ethnic democracy for its Arab national minority should be of interest to anyone interested in the study of democracy and minorities in general and in the Jewish state in particular.
This is a comprehensive, detailed, updated and solid analysis of the Arab-Palestinian politics in Israel in the two first decades of the twenty-first century, compared to earlier sub-periods since 1948. The extent of the Arab minority’s segregation or integration is discussed in both levels the national (political parties) and the local (municipalities). In this sense, this book is unique, since the local political institutions are the most critical arena for Arabs in Israel. Zeedan proves that while the Arab minority managed to integrate into the three branches of government- the legislative, the executive, and the judicial, recent Arab party formations manifests the Arab leadership’s strategy of seeking an autonomous status from within the political system while segregating itself from the Israeli Zionist (predominantly Jewish) parties. A must for every student of Middle East politics.
Rami Zeedan is assistant professor of Israel studies in the Jewish Studies Program at the University of Kansas.