In The Chosen Peoples, authors Todd Gitlin and Liel Leibovitz blend historical and religious perspectives to show how Israel and the United States have viewed themselves as God’s “chosen” peoples. The concept of being “chosen” is multifaceted, able to be interpreted in different ways. Being chosen, the authors show, has given these two nations a dynamism that can be used for both good and evil and that can trigger antagonisms with others viewed as “nonchosen” peoples (whether American Indians or Palestinians). Being chosen creates power, say the authors, but this power should be joined with justice.

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