Hebrew under the occupation of ISIS
This is an experimental typographic project that puts the Hebrew language under the foreign cultural influence of Amharic, Arabic and Korean languages. This was designed for a final project whereby I completed my degree (B.Des) in Visual Communication and Graphic Design at the Holon Institute of Technology (HIT).
Advisor: Oded Ezer
Date July 2015
What would Hebrew look like if ISIS conquered and occupied Israel?
Throughout the ages, different lands have been conquered by various empires. Often the occupying force abolishes the native language and cultural of the people and imposes their own identity on the conquered people. In other circumstances, the heavy influence of the occupying force filters throughout the social, political and cultural elements of the native society. For example, in the 7th century BCE, the Assyrians conquered the Land of Israel and the original old Hebrew script, known as the paleo-Hebrew script, was changed to the Assyrian Aramaic script. Both scripts come from the same group of Semitic languages so the difference in their appearance is not that big. Hebrew was still allowed to be spoken and written but only using the Assyrian Aramaic script..
In 1928, Turkey officially changed their Ottoman Turkish script which was based on Arabic and Persian scripts to the Latin-based new Turkish script as part of the modernization and secularization of the Turkish government.
In my project, I have chosen to examine the possibilities of what Modern Hebrew would look like today under the foreign cultural influences of Ethiopia, North Korea, and the Islamic State of Iraq (ISIS).
The ISIS occupation changes the Hebrew script by turning the letters to face upwards – towards God.
The ISIS occupation changes the Hebrew script by turning the letters to face upwards – towards God. In addition, all the letters are connected in a word to resemble the Arabic script. The vowels have been added above or below each letter depending on how the calligrapher visualizes the word to look like. If you look closely at the new letters below, you too should be able to read this new script!