Derek J. Penslar's research specialties are the history of modern European Jewry, Zionism, and the state of Israel. Penslar’s books include Zionism and Technocracy: The Engineering of Jewish Settlement in Palestine, 1870-1918 (1991, Hebrew version 2001); In Search of Jewish Community: Jewish Identities in Germany and Austria, 1918-1933 (1998, co-edited with Michael Brenner), Shylock’s Children: Economics and Jewish Identity in Modern Europe (2001); Orientalism and the Jews (co-edited with Ivan Kalmar, 2004), Contemporary Antisemitism: Canada and the World (2005), Israel in History: The Jewish State in Comparative Perspective (2006); and The Origins of the State of Israel 1882-1948: A Documentary History (with Eran Kaplan, 2011).
Derek Penslar’s latest book, Jews and the Military: A History, was published in 2013 by Princeton University Press. Penslar is currently writing a biography of Theodor Herzl for Yale University Press’ Jewish Lives series and a book on Zionism for Rutgers University Press’ series on Keywords in Jewish Studies. Penslar is co-editor of The Journal of Israeli History and is an elected fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the American Academy for Jewish Research.