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The politics of ancient Israel were theocratic, federal, and republican, Daniel J. Elazar argues in this 1973 Tradition article. Deriving his understanding of the political teaching of the Hebrew Bible by analyzing the its account of Israelite history and the judgment it casts upon alternative political institutions, Elazar takes the reader through the four constitutional […]

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Israeli society is threatened by an ideological, cultural, and political division that separates the religious and secular communities. Deeply held and diverging beliefs about God and the state are expressed through policy disagreements concerning Judea and Samaria, the allocation of welfare services, the power of religious courts, and much else. Despite these political differences, and […]

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How should the Shabbat be observed in a Jewish and democratic state? In this 1992 essay, the political theorist Daniel Elazar considers the question, balancing majority will, individual conscience, consent of the governed, and subsidiarity. In considering the ways Israel’s many factions relate to the Shabbat, Elazar suggests local referenda can help move the state […]

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