The holocaust and the israeli teacher

Yair Auron, Jack Katzenell, David Silberklang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article presents the conclusions of a comprehensive study of Israeli Jewish identity among student-teachers of all sectors of the Israeli educational system. Through this group, the article attempts to examine the attitudes of Isreali society to the Holocaust. A number of factors in Israeli attitudes to the Holocaust were examined: The "lessons" of the Holocaust as perceived by the future teachers; their attitudes to Jewish behavior during the Holocaust; the place of the Holocaust in the historical consciousness of young Israelis; study and evaluation of knowledge of the Holocaust; and a discussion of attitudes to antisemitism and its role in determining Jewish identity. The study found that young Israelis' conclusions regarding the Holocaust lean much more to a Zionist "lesson" than to Jewish ones, and even less to universal ones. A further finding was a stronger sense of pride and identification with the victims of the Holocaust today than in the past. Moreover, a large majority of the student-teachers maintained that all Jews should view themselves as Holocaust survivors. The Holocaust has become a central factor and, in many cases, the central factor in Jewish identity in Israel; no differences were found among the respondents' countries of origin, or among secular, traditional, national-religious, and ultra-orthodox Jews.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)225-257
Number of pages33
JournalHolocaust and Genocide Studies
Issue number2
StatePublished - Sep 1994
Externally publishedYes


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