The quest for victory: Collective memory and national identification among the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel

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Abstract

The interdependence of collective memory and national identification has become a widespread scholarly axiom. While the related literature recognizes the role of memories of victimization and heroic victories, this article illustrates the importance of a 'semiotic balance' between these two for the maintenance of national identification. The study is based on an individual-centered quantitative method, which has never been used to investigate the national identity-memory nexus before. Using a survey with a representative sample (N = 530) of the Palestinian citizens of Israel, the association between individuals' memories and national identification is examined. It was found that remembering a combination of victory and victimization is a better predictor of national identification than either theme separately. These findings indicate the crucial importance of a balanced mythical structure that includes both themes of victimization and triumph.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)464-479
Number of pages16
JournalSociology
Volume45
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science

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