Major Events and the Collective Memory of Conflicts

International Journal of Conflict Management, Vol. 24 No. 3, 2013, pp. 209-230

30 Pages Posted: 10 Jul 2013 Last revised: 12 Sep 2013

Date Written: July 10, 2013


Purpose: 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 aims to address this lack by exploring for the first time the way in which the causes for that exodus were presented in Israel from 1949 to 2005.

Design/methodology/approach: 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).

Findings: 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.

Originality/value: Taken altogether, this article contributes to the empirical and theoretical research on the major events in conflicts.

Keywords: Major event, Palestinian refugees, Palestinian refugee problem, 1948 War, Nakba, 1948 exodus, National narrative, Collective memory, Lydda, Ramla, War, Memory

Suggested Citation

Nets-Zehngut, Rafi, Major Events and the Collective Memory of Conflicts (July 10, 2013). International Journal of Conflict Management, Vol. 24 No. 3, 2013, pp. 209-230, Available at SSRN:

Rafi Nets-Zehngut (Contact Author)

Hebrew University of Jerusalem ( email )


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