"Cyclic interruptions": Popular music on Israeli radio in times of emergency

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Radio has become a part of the everyday fabric of life in industrialized societies. Precisely because of that, the effects of its omnipresence remain for the most part understudied.8 The same holds true for contemporary Israeli radio. Although it often goes unnoticed, Israeli radio plays an important role in engineering the national mood, particularly in times of emergency. Radio has always played a central role in shaping Israel's Jewish-Zionist national culture. Since 1948 the state-owned public radio as well as the military radio enjoyed near-exclusivity in the local media and explicitly socialized listeners to Zionist values. In everyday life the radio specialized in educational programs, in regulating and disseminating spoken Modern Hebrew, and in inculcating Western-oriented music genres. = In times of emergency radio news bulletins were the first to report of terrorist attacks, announce the outbreak of war, and ocially recruit the reserves by announcing call-up codes for military units. In these moments of crisis the radio's easy accessibility to events on the ground proved valuable for live reportage and provided the public with a sense of control. = Over the years the advances in the mobility of television coverage and the increase in televised "disaster marathons" have seemingly diminished the radio's explicit functions in times of emergency.? Yet despite this changing mediascape and the growing competition from television and the Internet, I describe in this chapter how contemporary Israeli radio has actually attained a unique positioning in covering national events, not as a bearer of news reports but as an engineer of collective emotions, by way of music broadcasting.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNarratives of Dissent
Subtitle of host publicationWar in Contemporary Israeli Arts and Culture
PublisherWayne State University Press
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9780814338049
ISBN (Print)9780814338032
StatePublished - 2012

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2013 by Wayne State University Press. All rights reserved.


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