Moore, Dahlia. “Israeli Women—Changes and Their Consequences.” In Psychology of Gender Through the Lens of Culture. Theories and Applications (ed. Saba Safdar, Natasza Kosakowska-Berezecka; New York: Springer, 2015), 113-46.
Structural, macrolevel factors (e.g., education level, the degree of sex-segregation in the labor market, availability of child-care facilities, tax exemptions for working mothers or dual-worker families, and other measures of industrialization) should be included in the analysis of changes in the lives of women as they contribute to our understanding of differences among societies. The impact of these macrolevel changes is not uniform across all groups and categories within societies. In order for these changes to be effective and change society, a supportive—humanistic and/or egalitarian—ideology is necessary. However, egalitarian and equal-worth ideals are not spread evenly. In Israel, as in all western societies, some segments maintain more traditional beliefs concerning the social roles of men and women and the division of labor between them, while others are more egalitarian. The main cultural areas in which changes may have occurred and are examined in this chapter include self-attribution of traits and locus of control, gender identities, the gendered division of labor, perceptions of family and work roles, and stereotypes against women. This chapter examines these issues in the diverse Israeli society.
Women in Israel are required by law to serve in the national army. While disabled women veterans constitute about 6% of the total disabled veteran population, their injuries during service are similar to those of men, and include injuries sustained during combat, in training, or in traffic accidents. To date, no attempt has been made to study this unique population. The current research employs the social model of disability and examines gender differences among Israeli Defense Forces veterans who became disabled during their military service, in the areas of mental and physical health, perceived stigma, and social support. Findings show that disabled women veterans report significantly lower social support, lower monthly salaries, and experience more discrimination than their male counterparts. No differences were found in other variables. This research is an important step toward raising the awareness of gender differences, and its findings stress the need for additional studies which will provide further information regarding this distinctive population.
The international experience suggests that work is the best way of lifting families out of poverty. Thus, this paper assumes that one crucial policy, among many others, aimed at poverty reduction is to increase the women’s participation in the labour market and their access to decent work. This issue is critical among Arab and Muslim women around the world in general and among Arab women in Israel since the participation rate of women in the labour market is quite low and about 55% of the Arab families live under the poverty line. Therefore, this paper aims to identify the reasons behind the low rate of Arab female participation in the labor market, and based on that to propose a framework for increasing their participation rate and reducing poverty among them and their households. An empirical study, based on 574 personal interviews, was conducted among unemployed Arab women in Israel. This paper identified four major domains that affect the level of employment participation: the socio-cultural domain, the ethno-political domain, the personal domain, and the spatial domain. Eventually, the paper proposes interference policies based on these domains in order to reduce poverty among Arab minority women in Israel.
Ben-Porat, Amir. Cosi (non) fan tutte. Women in the Football Pitch. Tel Aviv: Resling, 2015 (in Hebrew).
Women began to play soccer some time after this game was coded and turned into the game par excellence of the working class in England, and thus stirred heated emotions. The men united against them: the English Football Association banned them and its members were ordered not to cooperate with them; the male-controlled press denounced them and determined the game as not suitable for them. But nevertheless, and despite of it all, English women founded football clubs of their own and held games among themselves. Over the years, women’s soccer expanded to other Western countries, and then on to South America, Asia and Africa. One hundred and seventy-seven countries now have women’s soccer, including Israel. Women’s soccer enjoys a “relative autonomy” around the world, granted to it by national and international soccer institutions, led by men. Women achieved this autonomy through a persistent and unremitting struggle that paralleled the feminist struggle that took place on the political front, but also set apart from it. In Israel, Women’s soccer is conducted on the margins: the number of groups is not large, the budget is low, and the audience is scarce. Its status is as a leaf falling in the forest: with no one to see nor hear. And yet, during the season the players take to the field week after week, to show success in spite of it all, to themselves, and to others.
As with religious women’s quest to create inclusive faith communities, which in Plaskow’s assessment means allowing “the words of women to rise out of the white spaces between the letters in the Torah as we remember and transmit the past through the experience of our own lives,” women’s peace work takes place in unmapped white spaces. Their religious experience, exemplified by a Muslim woman’s story of a holy mother standing watch, invites us to reconsider our understanding of community and the meaning of peace and security – a reconsideration that is enriched when Palestinian women’s activism is analyzed with reference to Jewish feminist theology.
As demonstrated in this essay, the two fall into natural dialogue, articulating perspectives that are absent from secular conversations on women’s peacemaking. The questions raised by their life experiences as women of faith – on the nature of female participation in justice struggles, on the politics of space, on the relationship with the land, on interpersonal encounter – demand a change in language and a more holistic analysis of the issues at stake.