Philip Hollander, assistant professor

by CJS Admin
Phone: (608) 265-5193
860 Van Hise Hall, 1220 Linden Dr., Madison WI 53706


Ph.D, Columbia University, 2004
M.A., Columbia University, 1999
A.B., Columbia University, 1991

Areas of Research

Israeli Literature, American and European Hebrew Literature, Israeli Film, Holocaust Literature, Jewish Literature, Gender Studies, Queer Theory

Courses Taught

Modern Jewish Literature (Jewish Studies 318/ Hebrew Studies 318)

Introduction to Modern Hebrew Literature (Jewish Studies 301/ Hebrew Studies 301)

Readings in Contemporary Hebrew Literature I(Jewish Studies 533/ Hebrew Studies 533)
Fall 2009 – The Holocaust in Hebrew Culture
Fall 2010 – Representing the First Hebrew City: Tel Aviv in Literature and Film
Fall 2011 – The Military and War in Israeli Culture

Readings in Contemporary Hebrew Literature II (Jewish Studies 534/ Hebrew Studies 534)
Spring 2010 – Contemporary Israeli Culture
Spring 2011 – Mizrahi Jews and Their Literary and Filmic Representations

Selected Publications

“The Role of Homosociality in Palestinian Hebrew Literature: A Case Study of Levi Aryeh Arieli’s ‘Wasteland,’” Prooftexts 29.2 (2009): 273-304.

“Beyond Martyrdom: Rereading Shamir’s With His Own Hands,” Hebrew Studies 49 (2008): 101-119.

“Building Bridges Destined to Fall: Biological and Literary Paternity in Appelfeld’s ‘The Ice Mine.’” in Arguing the Modern Jewish Canon: Essays on Modern Jewish Literature in Honor of Ruth Wisse, eds. J. Cammy, D. Horn, A. Quint, and R. Rubinstein, 357-369. Boston: Harvard Center for Jewish Studies, 2008.

“Reclaiming Czernowitz in Aharon Appelfeld’s Flowers of Darkness” in Czernowitz at 100: The First Yiddish Language Conference in Historical Perspective, eds. Kalman Weiser and Joshua Fogel, 95-110. Lanham: Rowman and Littlefield, 2010.

“Shifting Manhood: Masculinity and the Lebanon War in Waltz with Bashir and Beaufort” in Representations of War in Israeli Culture. Eds Rachel S. Harris and Ranen Omer-Sherman. Detroit: Wayne State UP, 2012 (forthcoming).


Research Statement / Bio

Taking the observable differences between contemporary Israeli and Diasporic Jewish men as its starting point, my current book project From Schlemiel to Sabra: Transforming Masculinity in Early Twentieth Century Palestine Hebrew Culture explores how these differences arose as a Jewish national culture developed in pre-state Palestine. Implicating Diasporic Jewish masculine norms in the problems besetting the Jewish people, Palestinian Zionists promoted new models of Jewish masculinity considered better able to steel their male adherents for attainment of their nationalist goals. Yet, in contradistinction to the widespread belief that Palestinian Zionists merely negated earlier Diasporic norms, analysis of early twentieth century Palestinian Hebrew literary texts will demonstrate that highly contentious debates arose concerning what Diasporic masculine elements needed to be jettisoned and what elements needed to be maintained. While some Palestinian Zionists argued for the redefinition of Jewish masculinity in accordance with non-Jewish models, others like the Palestinian Hebrew prose masters Shmuel Yosef Agnon, Yosef Hayyim Brenner, Levi Aryeh Arieli, and Aharon Reuveni, drew inspiration from Diasporic Jewish models and looked to create a new Jewish masculine model grounded in introspection that would better allow for continuity with the past and the reassurance that comes with it. Understanding of the contested nature of Zionist masculinity, as well as the competing models advanced from the movement’s inception, offers an important new way of studying Israeli culture and its diachronic change.


Department of Hebrew and Semitic Studies
Middle East Studies Program