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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Collecting Contested Identities: The ambiguity of national culture in the Israeli Digital National Collection

  • Author(s): Agmon, Yair
  • Levy, Lihi
  • et al.

The Israeli National Library of Israel and Ministry of Heritage, recently commissioned a digitization project that would create a central digital repository of Israeli Culture. This sizeable contribution to cultural preservation Israel, raises the specter of past exclusions of marginalized communities. Yet an analysis of the project’s appraisal decisions and the descriptions made of its mission by both the Digital National Collection and the Ministry of Heritage, demonstrates that not all communities haunted by ghosts of a traumatic past are treated equally by the Digital National Collection. While some communities, such as non-European Jews were foregrounded to correct some of the past deficiencies, others such as Palestinians remain disenfranchised.

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