Land of Milk and Honey
This unit invites us to take a closer look at the agricultural aspects of Israel using a variety of primary sources. Learners will explore Israel’s agriculture, food products that Israelis tend to have in their homes, and advertising campaigns that encouraged Israelis to buy certain foods in different time periods. Comparing and contrasting these primary sources will highlight important details that shed light on food consumption as an expression of contemporary values and as a central part of Israeli and Jewish culture.
Primary sources in this lessonSee all
- What foods do you associate with Israel? Is there such a thing as “Israeli food”?
- Why is Israel called “the land flowing with milk and honey”?
- What foods do you associate with your Jewish identity and/or your family tradition?
- What role does food play in creating community and forging identity?
- What can the consumption of different types of food tell us about society (including economic and political issues)
In small groups, look at a few food advertisements and jot down some observations:
- What items are being promoted and by whom?
- Which colors, symbols, and graphic elements stand out or catch your attention?
- How are the primary sources similar and how are they different?
- Create a class cook book celebrating Israel’s agriculture and cuisine! Choose 2–3 foods from Israel and incorporate them into an illustrated recipe to share with your class. Take a look at this blog article for some inspiration! Adeena Sussman is #Cooking_History: A Modern Twist on Middle Eastern Flavors
- In pairs or small groups, create a contemporary ad for one of the products in the primary sources and present it to the class. Write an explanation that compares and contrasts the new ad with the original. Check out this article, “Fixing the Sexist Ads of the Past!” from our blog The Librarians, which demonstrates how ads from the past might have looked like if created today.
- Share a beloved family recipe and reflect on how it has changed over the years (if at all). Explain why this recipe is close to your heart and represents your family tradition and/or your Jewish identity.
- Create a meme based on the ad of your choice.
- Compare two Israeli ads from different time periods and analyze how they reflect shifts in Israeli society and daily life. Base your analysis on more information you can find about these two time periods.