Funeral at the edge of a cliff: Israel bids farewell to David Ben-Gurion

Michael Feige, David Ohana

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


David Ben-Gurion, Israel's first Prime Minister, passed away on 1 December 1973, weeks after the Yom Kippur War. His funeral reflected his unique political and symbolic standing as the father of the nation, as well as his wish to express national pioneering values. Buried on the cliff overlooking Wadi Zin, near his kibbutz home in the Negev desert, Ben-Gurion forced the Israeli leadership to follow a ritualistic pilgrimage path leading from Jerusalem to Sde Boker, similar to the one he had advocated and attempted himself. The article discusses how this watershed historical event was conceived, planned and carried out.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)249-281
Number of pages33
JournalJournal of Israeli History
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2012


  • David Ben-Gurion
  • collective memory
  • leadership
  • national funeral
  • pioneering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • History
  • Political Science and International Relations


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