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July 11, 2016
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Dreams Deferred

A Concise Guide to the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and the Movement to Boycott Israel

Edited by Cary Nelson
Dreams Deferred arrives as debates about the future of the Middle East and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict intensify under the extraordinary pressure of a region in chaos. The book empowers readers to be informed participants in conversations and debates about developments that increasingly touch all of our lives. Its sixty concise but detailed essays give facts and arguments to assist all who seek justice for both Israelis and Palestinians and who believe the two-state solution can yet be realized. Inspired both by the vision of a democratic Jewish state and by the need for Palestinian political self-determination, the book addresses the long history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and its current status. It demonstrates that the division and suspicion promoted by the Boycott, Sanctions, and Divestment (BDS) movement will only undermine the cause of peace.

About the Author

Cary Nelson, Jubilee Professor of Liberal Arts and Sciences and Professor of English at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, is the author or editor of 30 books. His op-eds have appeared in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal.


"Dreams Deferred is a convenient general guide to the multi-faceted Israeli-Palestinian conflict, as well as a valuable aid to understanding the contentious debates surrounding the BDS movement on American campuses and elsewhere."—Reading Religion

"Nelson's book is worth the read because it is full of concise overviews and insightful arguments that can serve as launching points for further discussions about the many important topics addressed within."—H-Net

"The book empowers readers to be informed participants in conversations and debates about developments that increasingly touch all of our lives. Its sixty concise but detailed essays give facts and arguments to assist all who seek justice for both Israelis and Palestinians and who believe the two-state solution can yet be realized."—European Association for Jewish Studies

"A rare blast of cogent analysis, reliable information, and just good sense about an issue desperately in need of all three."—Eric Alterman, Media Columnist, The Nation

"This critical dictionary of anti-Israeli mendacities will be a sword in the hands of anybody who wants to cut through the dogmas and the intimidations of the BDS movement. It restores the disputation to first principles and first facts. It documents a foul intellectual bankruptcy. Slanders are refuted and clichés are shattered on its every page. Dreams Deferred is an important intervention in an important battle of ideas. I hope it finds many readers, especially on campus. Israel is not perfect, but enough is enough."—Leon Wieseltier

"If you're sending a child off to college this fall, you'd do well to make sure they pack a copy of Dreams Deferred. . . . From apartheid to Zionism, there are definitions and descriptions that will help a student cope with today's anti-Israel environment prevalent on so many campuses. No less important, it will inform and clarify their own opinions and strengthen their positions."—Chicago Jewish Star

"Dreams Deferred will be a tremendous resource for anyone who is upset by slanders against Israel, who shudders for the present reality of Israelis and Palestinians, or who yearns for a better future."—Reform Judaism

"In this timely book of 60 essays, Nelson examines the boycott, sanctions, and divestment (BDS) movement, arguing that such policy has been divisive and counterproductive and undermines the cause of peace between Israelis and Palestinians. . . . Highly recommended."—Choice

"Along with an array of contributors, Nelson tackles 60 major issues concerning the conflict, condensing them into clear and concise essays that as a collection create a logical and intricate link of events, concepts, phenomena, and ideologies that give the reader an inclusive picture of the conflict's dynamics today."—Middle East Journal

"Offering brief, but cogent points on each topic, it is a particularly appropriate book for people engaged in dialogue with people highly critical of Israel, whether on campus or in the workplace."—The Jewish News

"For all of us who hope for a decent peace between Israelis and Palestinians, who oppose the occupation and the BDS movement, who defend, against all odds, the two state solution, this book is powerful intellectual armor and an intellectual sword."—Michael Walzer, Institute for Advanced Study, author of Just and Unjust Wars, Thinking Politically, The Paradox of Liberation and other books

"Whether you agree with Nelson's Zionist philosophy or not, he has edited a book that gives pro-Zionist, pro-Israel, and anti-BDS activists, and particularly those within the academy, much food for thought and much valuable information that will be of material help in the major task of confronting contemporary anti-Zionism and BDS in all its forms."—International Society for Research on Aggression Blog

"Easily accessible and highly enlightening, Dreams Deferred is a must-read for those interested in gaining a deeper understanding of the issues and history surrounding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict."—The Louis D. Brandeis Center

"Readers of the book may come to understand what's at stake and the serious problems that need to be overcome to reach Mideast peace. And the knowledge they acquire may empower them to take part in the debate about Israel's future."—Washington Jewish Week

"The quality of the prose is great and so is the level of historical and contemporary knowledge of Israel displayed therein. . . . It's quite an achievement to tackle such a wide range of topics, each of which could easily fill a short book."—Fathom

"This work is highly useful as background for debates and discussions. The editor urges small steps to ease tensions until an agreement can be reached that 'validates the national narratives of both peoples."—Jewish Book Council

"396 pages of essential information for anyone who cares about the delegitimization of Israel . . . the book's thoroughness and ease of use will be an asset for anyone dedicated to Israel."—Jewish United Fund

"In the miasma of the campus campaigns to boycott Israel and to reinvent the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Dreams Deferred offers the reader powerful, timely, and lucid accounts of the debates and controversies, providing essential information, provocative analysis, and an accessible guide."—Mark Yudof, President Emeritus, University of California

"Concise but encyclopedic, this superb reference guide is a book no one interested in what is one of our most central political issues today can afford to miss."—Marjorie Perloff, Professor Emerita of English, Stanford University and University of Southern California; president e

9780253025173 : dreams-deferred-nelson
Paperback / softback
275 Pages
$12.00 USD
9780253025166 : dreams-deferred-nelson
275 Pages
$30.00 USD

Other Titles by Cary Nelson

Israel Denial

Cary Nelson
Jun 2019 - Indiana University Press
$20.00 USD - Paperback / softback
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Teaching the Arab-Israeli Conflict

edited by Rachel S. Harris, introduction by Jacob Lassner, with contributions by Martin Shichtman, Ashley Passmore, Donna R. Divine, Adia Mendelson-Maoz, Marcela Sulak, Ellen W. Kaplan, Beverly Bailis, Ranen Omer-Sherman, Marilyn R. Tay...
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Anti-Zionism on Campus

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Mar 2018 - Indiana University Press
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$46.00 USD - Paperback / softback

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Menachem Begin and the Israel-Egypt Peace Process

Gerald M. Steinberg. Ziv Rubinovitz.
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I Am Your Dust

Gali Drucker Bar-Am. Translated by Natalie Melzer.
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The Tribal Challenge

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