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Can There Be A Collective Egodocument? The Case Of The Hashomer Hatzair Kehiliyatenu Collection In Palestine, 1922

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Chapter Summary

The collection of essays and confessions entitled "Our community" is about oneself and one's state of mind. This volume, entitled in Hebrew, Kehiliyatenu was written and published by a small group of young men and women who came to Palestine from the defunct Habsburg Monarchy and were among the founders of the kibbutz movement. The purpose of Kehiliyatenu was twofold: the first involved a fantasy whereby the writing, collecting, editing and reading of the volume was itself an act of group formation and bonding. The second purpose involved the dissemination of the image of the collection as reflecting an intimate group. Kehiliyatenu was created by young men and women who belonged to Hashomer Hatzair youth movement. A close reading of this collective egodocument only reveals its failure: this single document actually contains several dozen egodocuments each of which resists the ideal of fusion and to retain a sense of individuality.

Keywords: collective egodocument; Habsburg Monarchy; Hashomer Hatzair; Hebrew; individuality; Kehiliyatenu Collection; kibbutz movement; Palestine; youth movement



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