This chapter talks about the meanings of what is clearly the most prominent and most “Israeli” food event on the Israeli calendar: Israel's Independence Day barbecues. Based on ethnographic research conducted on Independence days from 2002 to 2009 in Jerusalem's Sacher Park, the chapter examines the two main practices in this salient food event: the roasting of meat and the managing of space. These practices reflect age and gender hierarchies, express the masculine myth of Israeli independence, and reveal the Israeli mode of grasping space. These practices also expose the ambivalence characteristic of the sense of power Israeli Jews have when it comes to their strained relations with their Palestinian and Middle Eastern neighbors.
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