The legendary story of the ten lost tribes of Israel has resonated among both Jews and Christians down through the centuries: the compelling idea that some core group of humanity was ''lost'' and exiled to a secret place, perhaps someday to return triumphant. In The Ten Lost Tribes, Zvi Ben-Dor Benite shows for the first time the extent to which the search for the lost tribes of Israel became, over two millennia, an engine for global exploration and a key mechanism for understanding the world.
As the book reveals, the quest for the missing tribes and the fervent belief that their restitution marked a necessary step toward global redemption have been threaded through countless historical moments--from the formation of the first ''world'' empires to the age of discovery, and from the spread of European imperialism to the rise of modern-day evangelical apocalypticism. More than a historical survey of an enduring myth, The Ten Lost Tribes offers a unique prism through which to view the many facets of encounters between cultures, the processes of colonization, and the growth of geographical knowledge.
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Zvi Ben-Dor Benite is an Associate Professor in the Department of History and the Department of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies at New York University. He is the author of The Dao of Muhammad: A Cultural History of Muslims in Late Imperial China.
"An interesting and at times even a fascinating read into the efforts of many people over many centuries to rediscover, reclaim, and even restore lost Israel."--BYU Studies Quarterly
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