About the book:
In 1936, the Palestinians rose against British rule. Sixty years later, this revolt has been co-opted as a symbol of resistance for both Palestinian and Israeli nationalists - but with very different meaning for the two groups. In this book, Ted Swedenburg analyzes individual and collective memories of the rebellion for what they disclose about the shaping of historical consciousness. His work shows how, through memory, the events of the past come to serve the politics of today. Swedenburg interviewed numerous veterans of the revolt for their recollections. He checks these memories against popular and scholarly accounts of the rebellion to reveal the self-deceptions, contradictions, and diffuse interests involved in the process of remembering a historic event. The result is a richly textured portrayal of memory as a "common sense, " a complex rendering of the revolt of the 1930s in its relation to antagonistic Israeli memory, Palestinian nationalism, popular traditions, and the Palestinian struggle in the international arena.