View From a Height
Commentary from the Mile High City
Sunday, September 21, 2003

More About the Fair

I did a little more digging about the Jewish Palestine Exhibit at the '39 Fair, and it's fairly interesting. First of all, a cantor of the day sang two pieces at the opening: Hatikvah, or "The Hope," now the national anthem of Israel, and El Moleh Rachamim. The last is a traditional prayer of mourning, said in remembrance of the dead on certain holidays. While most of the Remembrance service is personal, El Moleh Rachamim is communal.

I also found this picture of the entrance to the Pavilion:

The three figures represent the Scholar, the Laborer, and the Farmer, on whom civilization is built. Note the absence of the Soldier, although the Haganah was already training to defend the Jewish people there after the British left. The twelve icons on the doors represent the 12 Tribes of Israel. Clearly then, despite the secular nature of Zionism, here is a national movement that has not lost touch with its roots. Even the secular Jews sought to transform, rather than obliterate, their religious past.

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