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The Three Levels of Oppression: Ilan Gur Ze'ev

The First level:
In our opinion, the first level of oppression, primitive oppression, is expressed by inflicting aggressive force (physical violence) in order to force someone to act against their will and interest. Uprising against this kind of oppression is possible with different levels of success. It is possible to diminish its influence and there is hope for liberation from this level of oppression.
In this type of oppression the oppressor is the more oppressed than the one he is oppressing.

The Second Level of Oppression:
The second level of oppression isideological oppression, in which the oppressor manipulates (lies) the oppressed to the point of identification, the oppressed identifies with the values and interests of his oppressor. The identification is an important element in blurring the consciousness of the oppressed to the existence of the oppression. This system lowers the oppressed self-consciousness partly because of his own actions. These actions are drawn to the system's existing movement, it straightens and sophisticates the existing order and then rebuilds its boundaries. Examples are ideological expression as a nationalism, "free initiative" and Marxism. Against this existing oppression there is a hope to activate (as Marx in his time) a critical ideology (creating awareness) and to raise the oppressed to resistance against his oppressor. This level of oppression, moves from the personal level (private) to the class or group level, from the personal to the collective, it is far more efficient than the first level of oppression, because it exceeds physical oppression as the oppressors’ main means of manipulation. In correlation the liberation from the second level of oppression is more problematic and as usual evolves into a more sophisticated type of oppression. As long as the uprisers are weak, they will focus their actions against the systems structure. Once stronger and their control is more established, the oppressed will take over the roles of judges and legislators, and teachers and psychologists will be sent against their enemies to mainly treat the soul. Yet there is still place for hope.

Third level of oppression:
The third level of oppression, is a faceless oppression without class identification, successful enough to be accepted by the oppressed with internalization and devotion.This oppression is conditioned by the "narrowing of the dialogue" and sterilization of the antagonist dimension in the taken-for-granted well know reality, and their undisturbed actions of controlling forces in the system.Markuza is on the verge of pessimism in view of what we call oppression of the third level, in which the structure of the oppressed, up to the point of where the need or capability of rebellion will not exist. This is described as the rooting and destruction of the new: diseases, necessities and needs; illness, drugs and poisons, antidotes to create a new world of symbols that sum up the founding of "new man" that will never want or be capable of emancipation.

-Ilan Gur Ze'ev.

haggadah Section: Kadesh