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1949 Shapiro Zionist Hebrew Map of Israel Celebrating Its 2nd Year

Second Year of the State of Israel. - Main View

1949 Shapiro Zionist Hebrew Map of Israel Celebrating Its 2nd Year


Social Realism and Zionism.


Second Year of the State of Israel.
  1950 (dated)     25 x 13 in (63.5 x 33.02 cm)     1 : 750000


A rare and striking 1949 Joseph Szapiro (Schapiro) Zionist map of Israel, with striking Social Realist imagery, celebrating the second anniversary of Israel's 1947 founding. The map depicts the region from the Mediterranean Sea to Jordan (Transjordan) and Syria and from Lebanon to Egypt and the Gulf of Eilat (Gulf of Aqaba). Highly detailed, cities, towns, and villages are labeled throughout, with Jerusalem and Tel Aviv given prominence.
Social Realism in Israel
The map's most striking feature is the elaborate decorative art embracing the map proper. The surround is the work of Israeli artist Michael Kara, one of the pioneers in the development of a distinctive Israeli art movement in the late 1940s - 1950s. It contains elements inspired by Communist Social Realism, among them farm and construction workers, as well as Zionist tropes, including immigrant families, Jewish iconography, and a soldier and young women holding aloft the flag. Communist ideology would go on to play a significant role in the development of the Israeli state, influencing, among other things, the rise of the Kibbutz System.
The Moving Boundaries of Israel
Three different sets of boundaries are depicted. The international boundaries of Palestine, from before the state of Israel was founded, are illustrated by thick red lines. The boundaries of the 'partition plan' of November 1947 are shown by thin dashed red lines. The third and final set of boundaries are those created by the armistice that ended the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, now known as the Green Line. These territories are the West Bank and Gaza Strip, which are now part of Israel. This map provides a visual summary of the creation and growth of Israel during its first two years of existence.
Publication History and Census
This map was created by Michael Kara and Joseph Szapiro and printed by Kfar Monash Printers in Tel Aviv, Israel. It was initially issued as a supplement to the Davar newspaper. There are at least two states of the map, one in English, and another in Hebrew. Our research suggests that the Hebrew version, as here, issued in 1950, is the later of the two and that the English variant preceded the Hebrew version in 1949. This map is rare, with only one example in an institutional collection at the National Library of Israel.


Joseph Shapiro (יוסף שפירא) (1900 - December 4, 1967) also spelled Josef Szapiro, was a Polish-Israeli publisher and cartographer active in Israel in the middle part of the 20th century. Shapiro was born in Łódź, the part of Russian Poland. He studied at the Hebrew school in Łódź, then moved on to study economics and philosophy at Mannheim and Heidelberg, Germany, receiving a doctorate from Heidelberg in 1924. He immigrated to Eretz, Israel, in 1935. He began his own publishing interest around 1940, publishing maps and atlases of Israel - often covering the various wars and most up-to-date events. His final work was a series of maps illustrating the Six Day War (June 5, 1967 - June 10, 1967). His wife, Esther Lurie (1913 - 1998), was a prominent painter. When he died of a heart attack in 1967, the publishing business passed on to his son, Shaul Shapira (1947 - ????). Learn More...


Good. Wear along original fold lines. Closed margin tears professionally repaired on verso. Verso repair to centerfold separation. Closed tear extending one-and-three-quarters (1.75) inches in lower left quadrant professionally repaired on verso.


National Library of Israel 002367882. OCLC 234164232.