Abstract

Collective memory of conflicts is assembled around major events, such as, in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the 1948 Palestinian exodus from the central cities of Lydda and Ramla. To date, however, various theoretical aspects of major events of conflicts have not been considered in the literature. This article addresses this lack by exploring the way in which the causes for that exodus were presented in Israel from 1949 to 2005. Methodologically, this is based on studies that have analyzed separately the publications by various Israeli state establishments (e.g., national Information Center, Ministry of Education, the National Archive, and the army – IDF), and those by various Israeli-Jewish societal establishments (e.g., the research community, newspapers and 1948 war veterans). Empirically, the findings here describe the dynamics of the memory of that exodus in an integrated manner, as they are described in many studies. They demonstrate that until 1969, the Lydda-Ramla exodus was presented in Israel as an outcome of a willing flight -- while since the 1970s, as an outcome of a willing flight accompanied by expulsion. Other relevant occurrences are also described. Theoretically, the article contributes various insights, pertaining, for example, to: the five Manifestation Characteristics and the two Influence Characteristics of major events of conflicts; the eight determinant factors that shape the impact of these events; and the dynamic nature of the representation of major events. Taken altogether, this article contributes to the empirical and theoretical research on the major events in conflicts.

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