One of the underlying issues in today’s conversations about the meaning of “peoplehood” is situating the term’s relationship with historical expressions of Zionism. There is a lot at stake in establishing precisely where the concept falls on the spectrum between nationalism’s inclination to place the state at the center of collective cohesion and a more diaspora-oriented predisposition toward deterritorialized, voluntary, and permeable notions of minority communities categorized as ethnic or religious groups. Where does connection to/support of the state belong in evaluating an individual’s sense of peoplehood? To what degree should theories of Jewish peoplehood recognize, and even affirm, the blurry boundaries of group identity that tend to characterize a postethnic and global era? No clear consensus has emerged regarding these fundamental questions.

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