One People, One Blood: Subtitle: Ethiopian-Israelis and the Return to Judaism Author: Don Seeman
"Written with grace and thoroughly researched, One People, One Blood is an ethnography with a lot of heart that also sheds new light on a fascinating and fraught chapter in recent Jewish history."
?Qäs be-qäs, ənqulal be-əgərou yehedal? . . ."Little by little, an egg will come to walk upon its own leg." Ethiopian-Israelis fondly quote this bit of Amharic folk wisdom, reflecting upon the slow, difficult history that fulfilled their destiny far from their Horn of Africa birthplace.
But today, unlike these "authentic Jews," the Feres Mura, Ethiopian Jews whose families converted to Christianity during the nineteenth century and then reasserted their Jewish identity in the latter part of the twentieth century, still await acceptance by Israel. Since the 1980s, they have sought homecoming through the state's right of return law. Instead of a welcoming embrace, Israel's government and society regard them with reticence and suspicion. One People, One Blood expertly
documents this tenuous relationship and the challenges facing the Feres Mura.
Distilling more than ten years of ethnographic research, Don Seeman depicts the rich culture of the group, as well as their social and cultural vulnerability, and addresses the problems that arise when a political entity empowers itself to decide whose identity is legitimate or not.
Don Seeman was trained in anthropology at Harvard and holds a joint appointment in the department of religion and the Tam Institute for Jewish Studies at Emory