The article traces the use of Druze shrines for Israeli political aims, in particular to encourage Druze separatism vis-a-vis the Arab minority in Israel. Both Druze elites and the Israeli authorities have had an interest in encouraging a new sanctuary cult among the Druzes. While Druze elites were seeking to maintain their leadership through building and rebuilding shrines, the Israeli government found it could make good use of them to promote its own political agendas. The visits to the new shrines were transformed into official feasts bearing newly 'invented traditions'. In 1975 the Israeli Ministry of Education decided to separate 'Druze' education from the 'Arab one'. A new curriculum for 'Druze' tradition, history and culture' was prepared. The history of the shrines' sites and descriptions of the pilgrimages were the principal material for the new educational curriculum.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Earth-Surface Processes