Slouching Towards Jerusalem: Reactive Nationalism in the Irish, Israeli and Palestinian Novel, 1985-2005


John Maher

An engrossing and iconoclastic comparative study of reactive nationalism in Irish, Israeli and Palestinian Literature.

ISBN: 9780716531197 Categories: ,


Souching Towards Jerusalem is a unique contribution to comparative literature (Irish, Israeli and Palestinian) and deals with the under-researched phenomenon of reactive nationalism (emotional rather than ideological nationalism). It is the only comparative published study of its kind involving the three literatures and reflects its author’s long-term engagement with two arenas of conflict: the Israeli-Palestinian and Northern Irish conflicts.

Slouching Towards Jerusalem surveys these through the eyes of contemporary novelists from both arenas. Maher’s selection of authors is wide and varied and includes both lesser-known and emergent authors.

Dr. Maher uses the prisms of language, land, religion, love and war, and the changing image of the enemy in his quest for insight into the realities behind the novelists’ portrayals of their situations. His conclusions are iconoclastic and challenging as befits such a unique journey into the three contrasting contemporary literatures.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. Reactive Nationalism in the Light of Received Standard Nationalism
3. The Novels and the Novelists
4. Land as Language
5. The Image of the Enemy
6. Love in Time of War
7. Is Religion a Country?
8. Language as Land
9. Conclusion

About the Author

Dr. John Maher was awarded his PhD in Languages and Literatures of the Middle East, from the School of Oriental and African Studies, London. He is Visiting Research Fellow in the Department of Middle East and Mediterranean Studies, King’s College, London. A published and prize-winning author, his last novel, The Lucky Penny, was shortlisted for debut novel on BBC Radio 5 in 2007. He is currently completing a new novel with an Arts Council of Ireland Bursary in Literature.