Program Details

Jerusalem: The World's Most Contested City

Hank Savitch
Jewish Culture & History / History

Course Description

This series focuses on conflicts over land and development in Jerusalem. The series opens with the UN effort to "internationalize" the city in 1947. This is followed by its partition between 1948-1967 and eventual Israeli unification. Also examined are the political ramifications of the unified city in the realms of transportation and housing. Episodic outbreaks of violence, beginning in the 1980s and through the current period will be analysed. The construction of the "security barrier," its containment of terror and its impact on local populations will be described. Arab and Jewish building patterns and their effect on Jerusalem’s environment will be discussed, as well as the differences between "East and West Jerusalem." A comparison will be made between Jerusalem and other capital cities and the recent US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital will be examined. In this context prospects for broader peace will be reviewed.


  1. Jerusalem Under Partition
  2. Jerusalem Under Israeli Sovereignty
  3. Jerusalem Under Surveillance
  4. Jerusalem Under Challenge

About the Instructor

  • Hank Savitch, PhD is a Global Fellow at the Wilson Center (Washington, DC) and Affiliate Professor at FAU's School of Urban & Regional Planning. Savitch is also Emeritus Brown & Williamson Professor, University of Louisville. He served as co-editor of the Journal of Urban Affairs and has written fourteen books and 100 published articles. His co-authored volume, Cities in the International Marketplace received the best book award on urban affairs by the American Political Science Association. Professor Savitch has been a Lady Davis Fellow at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and served as a Research Fellow at Jerusalem’s Floersheimer Institute. His work on urban terror and development comprise a book, Cities in a Time of Terror, and monographs dealing with Jerusalem. Savitch has been a consultant to the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office on Israeli-Palestinian Issues. He has also served as consultant to former mayor of New York City, David Dinkins, the Department of Housing & Urban Development, the Mayors’ Urban Summit, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and local governments.

Upcoming programs presented by Hank Savitch.

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