Out of Palestine: The Lasting Influence of the British Mandate

Hadara Lazar, Rebecca Abrams


A journey back to British Mandate Palestine, peopled by Arabs, Jews and Britons, a intriguing world whose shadow lingers over Israel today. Journalist and novelist Hadara Lazar interviewed more than 100 people over 25 years for a collection of perspectives that show what has been remembered and ignored, refuted and admitted.

“My purpose is not to research what used to be but to uncover what people remember from that time, to find the link between their words and the myth that was created then, and to show how their memory changed with time,” Lazar says of Out of Palestine: The Making of Modern Israel.

The book is revealing about unofficial links between British officials and the Jewish underground in the 1920s and 30s and the complex attitudes of Jews toward Arabs, as well as toward other Jews with whom they often had little in common.

Lazar came to Jewish Book Week for a conversation with writer Rebecca Abrams who was working on a novel based in the same period.

Rebecca Abrams

Rebecca Abrams is an author, journalist and literary critic for the Financial Times.  She teaches creative writing at the University of Oxford and was writer-in-residence at Brasenose College, Oxford from 2017-20.  Her recent publications include The Jewish Journey: 4000 years in 22 objects (Ashmolean Museum).

Hadara Lazar

Hadara Lazar is author of five novels, as well as non-fiction books that explore life in Israel and British Mandate Palestine. She is also translator of Jean-Paul Sartre’s major novel, Nausea, into Hebrew.