Disaffiliating From the Cult of the Fallen

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2 Scopus citations


This article is an autoethnographic exploration of how my family lives with the memory of my uncle, who was killed in service as an enlisted soldier of the Israeli Defense Force during the Yom Kippur War (also known as the 1973 Arab–Israeli War). This article considers how the memory of my uncle has been constructed through the yearly national cycle of military and family ceremonies. Participation in military ceremonies of this nature is a way for my family to deal with the intolerable pain of my uncle’s death. Yet, I argue, this yearly cycle of commemoration is part of “the cult of the fallen” at the heart of contemporary Israeli society; a cult which places the death of my uncle as part of the narrative of inevitable, ongoing national conflict, connecting the past and the present and justifying further militarism in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)381-389
Number of pages9
JournalQualitative Inquiry
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2018


  • autoethnography
  • ethnographies
  • grief
  • memory
  • methodologies
  • social construction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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