Infiltration and the making of Israel’s emotional regime in the state’s early years

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ABSTRACT: After the 1948 war, the cease-fire lines between Israel and its neighbours remained porous. Palestinian refugees crossed the borders. Some returned to cultivate their fields; others crossed the border as thieves. Some intended to murder Israelis and wreak terror. Most of the refugees who made their way into Israel were not violent, but their presence frightened Jewish civilians living in frontier regions. Policy-makers and cultural agents of the social elite mobilized to mould the threatened population into Israelis who could display fortitude. The article analyzes the emotional regime the Israeli state sought to inculcate and the desirable and undesirable outcomes of this policy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)448-472
Number of pages25
JournalMiddle Eastern Studies
Issue number3
StatePublished - 3 May 2016


  • 1950s
  • Israel
  • emotional regime
  • fear
  • infiltration
  • security policy

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Cultural Studies
  • History
  • Sociology and Political Science


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