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Migration and its Discontents


The essay discusses some ethnic and racial presumptions which subtend discussions of the recent Israeli migration to Germany, specifically the description of the Israeli presence in Berlin as signifying a “return” of Jews to Europe after the Holocaust. The essay argues that this description perpetuates the grounding of Zionism in the experience of a subject of European origins. Considering a few references to the Israeli presence in Berlin in literary texts by Israeli authors of Middle Eastern origins, the essay follows the ways in which non-European writing may play on, rewrite and dispel the narrative of post-Holocaust reconciliation of Germans and Jews by unearthing Israelis’ status in Germany as “oriental” and their corresponding liminal identification as both “Europeans” and “Arabs.”

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