New York, The Maccabaean Publishing Co., 1904. Item #42568
1st US edition. Paper Wrappers. 8vo, xxii, 102 pages. Preface and notes by Jacob de Haas. With celebrated photographic portrait by E. M. Lilien of Herzl leaning over the balcony-rail of the Hotel Les Trois Rois, with original tissue present, Basel.
First American edition of Herzl's seminal call for an independent Jewish state, which remains “the single most important manifesto of modern Zionism and is one of the most important books in the history of the Jewish People" (Heymann, Bibliotheca Rosenthaliana--Treasures of Jewish Booklore 46:102-03). Insisting that assimilation was not the solution to millenia of suffering by the Jewish people, Herzl proposed instead that "sovereignty be granted us over a portion of the globe large enough to satisfy the reasonable requirements of a nation; the rest we shall manage for ourselves."
First published in Vienna in 1896 as Der Judenstaat and in English that same year (in London by David Nutt), this work set forth Herzl's life’s work to "transform Zionism from a weak and insignificant movement into a world organization and a political entity that Great Britain was prepared to accept as the authorized representative of the Jewish people. This in turn led to the Balfour Declaration and eventually to the founding of the State of Israel" (EJ).
Translations quickly appeared that same year in Hebrew, English, French, Russian, and Rumanian; eventually the work was published in 80 separate editions in 18 languages. "It was Herzl's book which really crystallized the idea of a national home for the Jews. Two conceptions had prevailed hitherto: either that of the ghetto, presupposing an unbridgeable gulf between Jews and Gentiles, or that of assimilation, which meant a complete acceptance by the Jews of their environment leading eventually to becoming among whom they lived. Herzl took a different view. By his work he transformed the Jewish people from a passive community into a positive political force" (PMM 381).
In sum, Theodor Herzl’s “Jewish State” is considered one of the most important texts of early Zionism. SUBJECT(S): Jews -- Restoration. Geschichte. Quelle. Zionismus. Zionism. Judentum.
An ex-library copy of the first US edition sold at auction in 2014 for over $5000.00; Jewish library stamp to title page, tear to blank corner of title page, a few pinholes in gutter margin from earlier binding, Good+ Condition. (KH-5-65).