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Resisting GenocideThe Multiple Forms of Rescue$
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Jacques Semelin, Claire Andrieu, and Sarah Gensburger

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199333493

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199333493.001.0001

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From the Memory of Rescue to the Institution of the Title of “Righteous”

From the Memory of Rescue to the Institution of the Title of “Righteous”

Chapter:
(p.19) 1 From the Memory of Rescue to the Institution of the Title of “Righteous”
Source:
Resisting Genocide
Author(s):

Sarah Gensburger

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199333493.003.0002

This chapter retraces the creation of the title ‘Righteous among the Nations’ (a translation from the Hebrew Hasidei Ummot Ha-Olam) in Israel in the 1950s to honor non-Jews who saved Jews by risking their lives. It highlights the gap that exists between the meaning currently given to this category — a vehicle for national reconciliation — and the notion of social relations between Jews and non-Jews that presided over the establishment of the award. Whereas Israel created ‘Righteous among the Nations’ as a foreign policy tool, today it is perceived as a domestic policy tool by most governments and organisations that use it, particularly in addressing inter-ethnic relations.

Keywords:   non-Jews, Righteous among the Nations, Israel, Jews, national reconciliation, social relations, foreign policy, inter-ethnic relations

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