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Word Count: 406
In Yael Zerubavels Recovered Roots he identifies and outlines the components of national identity National identity is described as a groups common historical highlights This identity is established through collective memory ie a groups vision of their history based on historical records revised to fit social and political agendas The revision is not a rewritten history but rather a representation of history with selective emphasis on historical events A selective emphasis elaborates condenses omits or conflates historical events to fit a given agenda Zerubavel states that commemoration is the basis for a groups collective memory He holds that commemoration rituals holidays festivals allows groups to articulate and negotiate their shared memories of particular events When these shared memories are combined they create a master commemorative narrative or a general notion or storyline of a shared past The shared historical view is termed commemorative time This reconstructed view of historical time molded by the groups commemorative density and collective amnesia selective emphasis generates the national identity Zerubavel applies his model of national identity to the creation of the state of Israel He determines that the reconstructing of historical events based on the selected agenda of the political elite is the catalyst for a national identity In the case of Israel commemorative time is created by first recalling and glorifying of the Jews struggles and successes of antiquity This is followed by a gap in time of failure and deterioration of group unity the exile generating in turn a vision for a rebirth of the glory of antiquity through current generations new Israeli settlements This Israeli model selects a certain point in history at which point the cultural identity deteriorates in turn the historian selects a recent historical event as the positive impetus for a return to the glory of the past Thus the authors of the historical record directly influence a peoples comprehension of their historyZerubavel calls attention to the correlation of historians and the
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