Ben-Gurion: The Burning Ground, 1886-1948

Shabtai Teveth, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) $29.95 (967p) ISBN 978-0-395-35409-4
David Ben-Gurion coolly reckoned human suffering in his calculus of political thought. The Holocaust, in his speeches, became one more object lesson for the Zionist future, a sign that the Jewish people would gain statehood. The fervent Polish Jew who from boyhood on believed he was destined to fulfill a mission endured 18-hour work days and terrible loneliness. He prized will power as the supreme human quality and downplayed emotion. An absent father, a husband who cheated on his wife, Israel's first prime minister ultimately felt let down by his family and his party. In the end he became his own strongest support. This engrossing, 1024-page biography by a Tel Aviv University scholar (the first installment in a multivolume life) is a remarkable achievement. Teveth (Moshe Dayan uncovers the personal story that intertwined with the creation of Israel. There is much behind-the-scenes drama, such as Ben-Gurion's vehement feud with Chaim Weizmann. Photos not seen by PW. Author tour. (June 8)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1987
Release date: 01/01/1987
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 967 pages - 978-0-395-48358-9
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