The Ancestral Sin: Israeli Series Exposes Systematic Discrimination of Mizrahi Jews in the 1950s

“The Ancestral Sin” (2017) is a controversial Israeli documentary series about the problematic integration of Middle Eastern Jewish immigrants to Israel in the 1950s. Using first-hand testimonials and previously secret government archives, the documentary reveals the shocking systematic discrimination and racist policies put in place by the Ashkenazi establishment of the new state. The series reopened old wounds of ethnic division in Israeli society and criticized the almost mythic status of greatness given to the country’s Ashkenazi founding fathers. The trailer (01:28), featured above, the i24News segment (04:59), featured below, and this article introduce the documentary and the impact it had on the Israeli public.