Jewish identity is tied up with some of today’s most difficult and contentious issues. The purpose of this book is to open up many of these issues for discussion. It examines Jewish identity politics and Jewish contemporary ideology using both popular culture and scholarly texts. Since Israel defines itself openly as the ‘Jewish State’, we should ask what the notions of Judaism, Jewishness, Jewish culture and Jewish ideology stand for. Atzmon analyses secular Jewish political and cultural discourse, both Zionist and anti-Zionist. He looks at the Jewish political attitude towards history and time, the role of the holocaust, anti-Gentile ideologies, Jewish pressure groups, Zionist lobbying and more. The current state of world affairs raises an urgent need for a change in our attitudes towards politics, identity politics and history.
‘Gilad Atzmon has written an absorbing and moving account of his journey from hard core Israeli nationalist to a de-Zionized patriot of humanity and passionate advocate of justice for the Palestinian people. It is a transformative story told with unflinching integrity that all (especially Jews) who care about real peace, as well as their own identity, should not only read, but reflect upon and discuss widely.’
Richard Falk, Professor of International Law at Princeton University and author of over twenty books
‘Gilad Atzmon has written a fascinating and provocative book on Jewish identity in the modern world. He shows how assimilation and liberalism are making it incredibly difficult for Jews in the Diaspora to maintain a powerful sense of their ‘Jewishness.’ Panicked Jewish leaders, he argues, have turned to Zionism (blind loyalty to Israel) and scaremongering (the threat of another Holocaust) to keep the tribe united and distinct from the surrounding goyim. As Atzmon’s own case demonstrates, this strategy is not working and is causing many Jews great anguish. The Wandering Who? Should be widely read by Jews and non-Jews alike.’
John J. Mearsheimer, Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago
‘A book by a professional saxophone player, a philosopher, and an anti-Zionist Jew promises to be an unusual read, particularly since they are all the same person. Gilad Atzmon’s book, The Wandering Who? is as witty and thought-provoking as its title. But it is also an important book, presenting conclusions about Jews, Jewishness and Judaism which some will find shocking but which are essential to an understanding of Jewish identity politics and the role they play on the world stage.’
Karl Sabbagh, journalist, television producer and the author of several books including A Rum Affair, Power Into Art, Dr Riemann’s Zeros and Palestine: A Personal History. He is currently the publisher of Hesperus Press
‘Gilad Atzmon‘s The Wandering Who? is a series of brilliant illuminations and critical reflections on Jewish ethnocentrism and the hypocrisy of those who speak in the name of universal values and act tribal. Relying on autobiographical and existential experiences, as well as intimate observations of everyday life, both informed by profound psychological insights, Atzmon does what many critics of Israel fail to do; he uncovers the links between Jewish identity politics in the Diaspora with their ardent support for the oppressive policies of the Israeli state.
Atzmon provides deep insights into “neo-ghetto” politics. He has the courage - so profoundly lacking among western intellectuals - to speak truth to the power of highly placed and affluent Zionists who shape the agendas of war and peace in the English speaking world. With wit and imagination, Atzmon’s passionate confrontation with neo-conservative power grabbers and liberal yea sayers sets this book apart for its original understanding of the dangers of closed minds with hands on the levers of power. This book is more than a “study of Jewish identity politics” insofar as we are dealing with a matrix of power that affects all who cherish self-determination and personal freedom in the face of imperial and colonial dictates.’
Professor James Petras, Bartle Professor of Sociology at Binghamton University, New York
‘Atzmon’s insight into the organism created by the Zionist movement is explosive. The Wandering Who? tears the veil off of Israel’s apparent civility, its apparent friendship with the United States, and its expressed solicitude for Western powers, exposing beneath the assassin ready to slay any and all that interfere with its tribal focused ends.’
Professor William A. Cook, Professor of English, University of La Verne, Southern California
‘The Wandering Who? features Gilad Atzmon at his delightful and insightful best: engaging, provocative and persuasive.’
Jeff Gates, author of Guilt By Association: How Deception and Self-Deceit Took America to War
‘The Wandering Who? is a pioneering work that deserves to be read and Gilad Atzmon is brave to write this book!’
Dr. Samir Abed-Rabbo, author and professor emeritus in the field of international law. He is director of the Center for Arabic and Islamic Studies in Brattleboro, Vermont and the former Dean of The Jerusalem School for Law and Diplomacy
'Gilad's escape from spiritual claustrophobia towards a free and open humanitarianism is fearless. (He's a jazz musician, not a professional academic,after all!) Though his focus here is specific, it seems to me that he offers a potentially liberating suggestion to anyone ready to listen: isn't culturally exclusive triumphalism a fatally narcissistic dead end?' Robert Wyatt
'Intelligent, bold, unapologetic.' Al-Jazeera
Zero Books UK & USA
Editions Demi-Lune France
Zambon Verlag Germany & Italy
Oriente Y Mediterraneo Spain
Arab Institute for Research & Publishing Jordan
İlimyurdu Publishing Turkey
Astarti Editions Greece
Material: finished copies (202 pp.)
The explosive first novel which is even more relevant now than when first published from a great name in jazz. In the form of a journal published by the German Institute for the documentation of Zion in 2052, we are introduced to the life and philosophy of Professor Gunther Wünker, father of peepology, wanderer and holder of strong anti-Zionist views. A novel that is intelligent, hilarious, sexy and powerful. Gilad Atzmon is a highly acclaimed Jazz saxophonist who here shows that he is also a great writer and thinker. This important book is not for the faint-hearted.
‘A Guide to the Perplexed is that most welcome and necessary thing, a satire with a target and a true aim.’ Nicholas Blincoe
‘A hilarious satire on modern Israel. It also serves as a taboo-busting treatise on the effect of diaspora on art, science, sexuality and racial identity. This is a fascinating, ugly, hilarious and bonkers book.’ Time Out
‘A Guide to the Perplexed is part white-hot satire, part uproarious farce, part sheer extravagance with language and ideas and part political testimony of anatomisation and no little hope. It is best read next to a stereo with Atzmon's horn soaring in the foreground.’ Chris Searle
‘A lot of irreverent fun, and a brilliant deconstruction of Jewishness done with Voltaire's pen.’ Israel Shamir
‘Atzmon writes with so much style and his gags are so hilarious.’ Guardian
‘This is a brilliant parody of all of us and behind this comedy hides our terrible tragedy’ Yediot Acharonot
Serpent’s Tail UK
Argo Czech Republic
Emece World Spanish
Tokyo Sogen Japan
Material: finished copies (151pp); English edition and several others.
Danny Zilber is a world-acclaimed trumpet player. A constant procession of women traipse through his dressing room, yet none can satisfy his need for love. Until, that is, an encounter with a mysterious woman who leaves just as quickly as she drops her panties. Murder, sexual manipulation, the abduction of Nazis - these are just some of the means Danny’s manager and his compatriots employ in order to safeguard the security of Israel. Meanwhile Danny holds dear the sole memento he has of that fateful meeting - the brassiere his ‘one and only’ left behind. MY ONE AND ONLY LOVE is a scathingly comic take on Zionist politics and Israeli espionage.
‘A biting satire on Jewish identity, Zionist politics and sex.’ The Observer
‘A fusion of anti-Israeli conspiracy theory and adolescent sexual farce - Mordechai Vanunu meets ‘American Pie’ - which involves cryogenically maintained war criminals, Mossad agents, and a trumpeter who can bring women to orgasm just by playing a single note.’ Time Out
‘Catch 22 meets Only Fools and Horses.’ Jazz Review
‘A panoply of convincing, crazed and comic voices. A dramatic and entertaining satire and a welcome left-field look at Israeli self-identity.’ Nicholas Blincoe
Saqi Books WEL
Al Saqi Arabic
Material: finished copies (239pp).