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What is Zionism?
Exploring Israel’s Founding Debates

Most Jews today love and support Israel, but do we understand the founding vision of the Zionist project? Or the great debates that shaped the emergence of the Jewish state? In this course, we will return to some of Israel’s founding figures to explore the many meanings of Zionism: Is Zionism meant to save the Jews from physical destruction or to renew the Jewish spirit? What is the relationship between Zionism and Judaism? How has the meaning of Zionism changed from the first Zionist Congress to the present day? Through essays and speeches by figures such as Theodore Herzl, Ze’ev JabotinskyAhad Ha’am, and Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook, we will probe how different views of Zionism shape the past, present, and future of Israel.