Gilad Atzmon

jazz artist-world music-live dates-author-thoughts-Jewish Identity-Politics-Athens & Jerusalem-The Wandering Who?

Welcome to Gilad Atzmon's webpage. This site provides information about Gilad's musical and intellectual activity.  

Gilad Atzmon's  The Wandering Who? A Study Of Jewish Identity Politics

Jewish identity is tied up with some of the most difficult and contentious issues of today. The purpose in this book is to open many of these issues up for discussion. Since Israel defines itself openly as the ‘Jewish State’, we should ask what the notions of ’Judaism’, ‘Jewishness’, ‘Jewish culture’ and ‘Jewish ideology’ stand for. Gilad examines the tribal aspects embedded in Jewish secular discourse, both Zionist and anti Zionist; the ‘holocaust religion’; the meaning of ‘history’ and ‘time’ within the Jewish political discourse; the anti-Gentile ideologies entangled within different forms of secular Jewish political discourse and even within the Jewish left. He questions what it is that leads Diaspora Jews to identify themselves with Israel and affiliate with its politics. The devastating state of our world affairs raises an immediate demand for a conceptual shift in our intellectual and philosophical attitude towards politics, identity politics and history.

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To read articles and reviews click here.


"A transformative story told with unflinching integrity that all (especially Jews) who care about real peace, as well as their own identity, should not only read, but reflect upon and discuss widely." Professor Richard Falk
 United Nations Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Palestine

"Fascinating and provocative" Professor John J. Mearsheimer 

“Gilad’s book constitutes an excellent critique of Identity Politics in general and Jewish Identity Politics in particular from a humanistic perspective. These hysterical attacks upon Gilad only reveal the weaknesses, insecurities, double-standards and hidden agendas of those who attack him. Gilad’s humanism and plea for humanism shine through every page of this book—obviously influenced by his Jazz. A Love Supreme!” Professor Francis A. Boyle

"Atzmon addresses in The Wandering Who?  important issues that deserve careful consideration by everyone—Jews, Palestinians and others—who are concerned with the interrelated topics of Zionism, the Jewish state, Palestinian oppression and Jews." Professor Norton Mezvinsky ( Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, May 2012)

"Atzmon’s insight into the organism created by the Zionist movement is explosive." Professor William A. Cook

“Like the ancient prophets Atzmon exposes Jews. At the same time, Atzmon believes that the Bible, from which the prophets spring, is bogus….Atzmon provides no hiding place for Jews anywhere.”  (Future of the Prophetic, Marc H. Ellis pg’ 332)...“Atzmon performs the prophetic for our time. Like the biblical prophets he does not acknowledge, Atzmon believes we are at the end of Jewish history, a history, like the prophets, he no longer believe exists or, if it does, is not worthy of being carried forward. Irony of ironies, he witnesses to the continuity of both” (pg’ 334)...“Like Moses, though with a twist, Atzmon is constrained from entering the land….Atzmon refuses to return until the Promised Land is liberated from the modern-day Israelites. In short, Atzmon’s homeland is occupied by Jews” (pg’ 336) ...“ Instead of King of the Jews. Perhaps Atzmon should be recognized as the prophet of old, At least in his self description and his outreach, this is the way he appears” (pg’ 332) Marc Ellis

"A superb and necessary book that demystifies some "undeniable truths" about Jewish identity -
Gauden Sarasola, El Pais


"I see in Atzmon writings a number of memes that are seeping into the common discourse.  A meme is a persuasive idea that spreads in a population like a useful gene spreads in a population. Some of those memes include:
-The now well-established fact that Jews are not a racial group but an ideological religious belief that spread many centuries ago among people of diverse background (this meme came from studies of the Khazars and others by authors like Arthur Koestler, Kevin Alan Brooks, Shlomo Sand, and now Atzmon)
-The idea of a conflict between chauvinistic nationalism and universal humanism.
-The weird mix of religious heritage/belief with tribal notions in Jewish political discourse
-The distorted recruitment of archaeological and other studies to support the political ideology of a connection between Jews of today and Israelites of the bible
-The recruitment of the ideology of suffering as a quasi-religious belief that is no longer subject to normal historical examinations (and in fact shielded from such historical examination via laws)." Dr. Mazin Qumsiyeh

"Atzmon’s essential contribution to solidarity with Palestine is to help non-Jews realize that they are not always in the wrong when conflicts with Jewish organizations arise." Jean Bricmont

Gilad's "The Wandering Who" entertains, pushes and irritates us. His painful journey through what it means to be Jewish, what the consequences are of carrying that realization around, and his ultimate acceptance of who he is makes me awfully glad I was raised a Methodist. Not to be missed and not to be put down for later, his book is one of the best reads of 2012." 

Greta Berlin - Co-Founder, the Free Gaza movement

“Gilad Atzmon decided to open Pandora’s Box, and ignite a debate that has been frustratingly dormant for too long. His experiences are most authentic, views are hard-hitting, and, at times, provocative. It must be read and discussed.”  Ramzy Baroud,  Palestine Chronicle

"This is why I think his critique of Zionism is one of the essential books of our time." Christopher Bollyn

"Gilad Atzmon’s book, The Wandering Who? is as witty and thought provoking as its title.  But it is also an important book, presenting conclusions about Jews, Jewishness and Judaism which some will find shocking but which are essential to an understanding of Jewish identity politics and the role they play on the world stage." Karl Sabbagh

"A pioneering work that deserves to be read and Gilad Atzmon is brave to write this book!" Dr. Samir Abed-Rabbo

“Gilad's escape from spiritual claustrophobia towards a free and open humanitarianism is fearless” Robert Wyatt

"It is excellent from beginning to end.  very well-organized and well-articulated arguments." David Rovics

“In his inimitable deadpan style, Atzmon identifies the abscess in the Jewish wisdom tooth – exilic tribalism – and pulls it out. Ouch!” Eric Walberg, Al Aharam Weekly

"It shows a sincerity and courage that is lacking in many Jewish intellectuals." Jonathan Moadab

“It is more than an academic exercise. It is a revelation!” Lauren Booth, Press TV

“The Wandering Who is a philosophical masterpiece that liberates us from the zionist superstitions that enslave us. It should be required reading for anyone seeking to understand the human condition in our irrational times.” Greg Felton

"It is an exhilarating read, from the atemporality of immoral action to the temporality of morals, from Jewish suffering to supremacy and expansionism to the categorical imperative, and from guilt feelings to responsibility." Dr Anthony Löwstedt

"A brilliant analysis that makes what appear to be contradictions in Jewish identity based political behavior not only comprehensible but predictable." Jeff Blankfort

 "Atzmon has the courage - so profoundly lacking among Western intellectuals" Professor James Petras

“Having known Gilad for 25 years, I read the book in English, I heard it in Hebrew and reflected on it in Arabic. Gilad Atzmon is astonishingly courageous” Dr. Makram Khoury-Machool

"In many ways, Atzmon’s book is a cri de couer addressed to Jews, specifically, but to humanity, generally, to grow up! To reach beyond tribalism and the politics of fear and vengeance." Gary Corseri

"Like a surgeon's knife cutting through crap to the kernel of truth! Courageous and exhilarating!"  Inge Etzbach 

"Gilad Atzmon reflects on his transforming journey from an IDF “Israeli”, a racist tribalist, self-ghettoized Zionist, with exclusionist mentality, who was greatly influenced as a child by his “veteran Zionist terrorist” grandfather, into simply a Universalist and Humanist." Nahida Izzat, Uprooted Palestinians

“A fascinating achievement” Dr Oren Ben Dor

“Gilad Atzmon is someone who encompasses what it means to be an intellectual.” Kim Petersen, Dissident Voice

“Gilad Atzmon is the Moses of our time, calling all of us out of the Egypt of our boneheaded nationalisms and racialisms and exceptionalisms and chosen-people-isms toward some form of humanistic universalism.”  Dr. Kevin Barrett

 "Perhaps only a musician could have written this sensitive, perceptive lament over how so many Jews, believing themselves to be doing 'what is good for the Jews,' have managed to carve the heart out of the Palestinian nation and make this tragedy look like the natural order of things." Kathleen  Christison

“Gilad's The Wandering Who? would have been a welcome delight to Albert Einstein just as it will be the irritating nemesis for Abe Foxman ideologues.” Dr. Paul Balles 

“A book that will shake up a few people….” Gordon Duff

“Engaging, provocative and persuasive.’ Jeff Gates

“When you finish reading this book, you may likely as well see a different face in the mirror.” Professor Garrison Fewell

 “The Wandering Who deconstructs the unique political identity that shapes the reality of the Jewish Nation and the crimes committed in its name. As a non-Jew, I found it illuminating!” Sameh Habeeb, Palestine Telegraph


"Gilad Atzmon probes the dilemmas Zionism has created for its adherents" Neil Berry, Arab News

"It is a very moving account that should be read by everyone." Silvia Cattori

“The Last Jewish Prophet”  Professor William T. Hathaway

"Atzmon is an iconoclast.” Dr.  Paul Larudee

"A brilliant, courageous study as well as critical reflection on Jewish ethnocentrism" Rainlore's World of Music

“Like all truth tellers of any merit Atzmon can expect the wrath of the powers that be and their minions as a reward for what he is exposing.   People like Atzmon will have played a vital role in saving us from ourselves if indeed we do manage to survive.  Love and respect to my brother Gilad Atzmon.” Ken O’Keefe

“The magical and yet extremely subtle gift that Gilad Atzmon offers through his personal journeys in The Wandering Who? is the wisdom of disillusionment.” Shahram Vahdany, MWC News

 “Atzmon's writing respects no sacred cows. His wit is biting, his insight and logic compelling.” Richard A. Siegel

“Sometimes a brash, abrasive provocateur is what is required as a catalyst for genuine debate.” Sunny Singh

"This is a very perceptive and instructive book"  Roy Ratcliffe

"I commend this book to anyone interested in Palestine/Israel, the Middle East in general, or Jewish identity issues." Sheldon Richman


"The most accurate assessment to date on Jewish identity and political drive" Today's Jewsih Heroes

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