The political discourse of Arabs in Israel: moralism, radical realism, and realistic realism

Doron Navot, Ebrahem Hindi, Muhammed Khlaile

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Using the discriminatory character of Israeli politics as our point of departure, this paper argues that for large numbers of Palestinian Israeli citizens, new realistic terms of collective engagement are attractive and possible. Based on analytical Marxism and writings about realist normative political theory, we contend that politicians can advance strategies that establishing foundations for resolving the minority’s trap. Meanwhile, constructing identities is always delimited by the capacity of politicians to meet material needs and preserve certain distinct elements of the old “trapped identity”. This framework guides elaboration of the recent political discourse and strategies of the Israeli Knesset members Ayman Odeh and Mansour Abbas. While Odeh is a radical realist, Abbas is a realistic realist, excluding arguments based on values that the Israeli state cannot accept. Nonetheless, Abbas’ project is not only fragile but has also demanded the substantial political and moral sacrifice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1972-1996
Number of pages25
JournalEthnic and Racial Studies
Issue number10
StatePublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


  • Arabs
  • Discourse
  • Israel
  • indigeneity
  • moralism
  • realism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Anthropology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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