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The Handbook of Israel's Political System


  • Date Published: October 2018
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107097858

£ 120.00

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About the Authors
  • There is growing interest in Israel's political system from all parts of the world. This Handbook provides a unique comprehensive presentation of political life in Israel from the formative pre-state period to the present. The themes covered include: political heritage and the unresolved issues that have been left to fester; the institutional framework (the Knesset, government, judiciary, presidency, the state comptroller and commissions of inquiry); citizens' political participation (elections, political parties, civil society and the media); the four issues that have bedevilled Israeli democracy since its establishment (security, state and religion, the status of Israel's Arab citizens and economic inequities with concomitant social gaps); and the contours of the political culture and its impact on Israel's democracy. The authors skilfully integrate detailed basic data with an analysis of structures and processes, making the Handbook accessible to both experts and those with a general interest in Israel.

    • Features detailed information about Israel's political system, including all the institutions of Israel's democracy as well as its evolution and current functioning
    • Presents data on Israeli society and politics collected from official sources, as well as new material based on primary research conducted by the authors
    • Exemplifies Israel as a parliamentary democracy
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'A treasure of information, analysis and insight. A must for anyone who wishes to understand the complex challenges, achievements and difficulties, of the Jewish state.' Shlomo Avineri, Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities

    'This is a monumental work. It is precise and fluent and enables the reader to see both the forest and the trees. The authors know how to distinguish between the important and the unimportant. The book is mandatory reading for anybody interested in Israeli public and political life. It offers a useful and enlightening reading for those interested in political systems.' Mordechai Kremnitzer, Vice President, Research, The Israel Democracy Institute

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2018
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107097858
    • length: 982 pages
    • dimensions: 261 x 185 x 48 mm
    • weight: 1.85kg
    • contains: 52 b/w illus. 76 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. Establishing the State: The Supremacy of Politics:
    1. The formative early years of the state (1948–53)
    2. Does Israel have a constitution?
    Part II. Institutions Matter:
    3. The presidency and the symbols of power
    4. The Knesset: first among equals?
    5. The executive branch and attempts to strengthen it
    6. The judiciary's growing involvement in public life
    7. Monitoring mechanisms: the state comptroller and state commissions of inquiry
    Part III. Political Society:
    8. Political participation: have Israeli citizens given up on the political system?
    9. Political parties: can we get along without them?
    10. Elections: the vague verdict of the Israeli voter
    11. Government coalitions: a steering mechanism in the political system
    12. Civil society: the third sector that grew unnoticed by the state
    13. The media in Israel: do they strengthen or weaken democracy? Part IV. Open Policy Problems:
    14. Security reigns supreme
    15. Arab citizens of Israel
    16. Politics, society, and economics: how did the state provide for the society?
    17. Religion and state: between social conflict and political accommodation
    Part V. Democracy in Israel:
    18. Political culture in Israel.

  • Authors

    Itzhak Galnoor, Hebrew University of Jerusalem
    Itzhak Galnoor is Herbert Samuel Professor of Political Science (emeritus) at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem, and Academic Director at the Chazan Center at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute. He has been a Visiting Professor at many international universities, and served on the Executive Committee of the International Political Science Association (IPSA) and edited its Advances in Political Science book series, published by Cambridge University Press. He is the co-author of Privatization Policy in Israel: State Responsibility and the Boundaries of Privatization (2015). In 2015, Galnoor was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Association of Israel Studies (AIS) and in 2016, The Scholar Achievement Award of the Israel Political Science Association.

    Dana Blander, Israel Democracy Institute, Jerusalem
    Dana Blander is a senior researcher at the Israel Democracy Institute (IDI) in Jerusalem, the editor of IDI's online magazine 'Parliament', and a clinical psychologist. Her research focuses on Israeli politics, specifically civic participation and deliberative democracy, referendums, anti-democratic legislation, public opinion and investigation committees. She received her degrees in Political Science and Psychology from the Hebrew University, Jerusalem. Her doctoral thesis, 'Ambivalence as a Challenge to The Political Order', won the Hebrew University Berger Prize for academic excellence.

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