#341 Israel Zangwill

Israel Zangwill


(1864 - 1926)


Israel Zangwill (February 14, 1864 - August 1, 1926) was an English-born Zionist and writer.

His early life was spent in the East End of London, and he was a teacher in the Jewish Free School there. In later life, his friends included Jerome K. Jerome and H. G. Wells. He wrote a very influential novel Children of the Ghetto (1892), and his play The Melting Pot was a hit in the USA in 1908-1909.The latter received its most recent production at New York's Metropolitan Playhouse, March 2006. He also wrote mystery works, such as The Big Bow Mystery.

Zangwill is known for coining the slogan "A land without a people for a people without a land" describing Zionist aspirations in the Land of Israel. However, he did not invent the phrase: in its original form "A country without a nation for a nation without a country" it is attributed to Lord Shaftesbury.

Zangwill, a British Jew, founded an organization called the Jewish Territorialist Organization in 1905, the aim of which was to create a Jewish homeland in whatever possible territory in the world (and not necessarily in what today is the state of Israel). Zangwill died in 1926 in Midhurst, West Sussex after trying to create the Jewish state in such diverse places as Canada, Australia, Mesopotamia, Uganda and Cyrenaica.

Israel Zangwill was the father of Oliver L. Zangwill, a prominent British psychologist.

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