A couple readings amalgamated to describe the conditions and roles of Women in Israeli society.

Near & Middle Eastern Civilizations
Course Code
Maria Subtelny
Study Guide

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Women in Israel
Roles include taking care of family : Mothers of Israel
Marilyn P Sair Was the Kibbutz an Experiment in Social and Sex Equality
-Only few women were keen on going to Israel in Yishuv era to cultivate and harness the
-In the Kvutza, quota dictated 10% of slots to be distributed to women. 10-30 men in a
kvutza, 1-3 women(1909). Strenuous labour seen as beyond womens capacity. Also, women
had a deficiency in Hebrew in comparison to men who were taught for 6 years prior to their
Bar Mitzvah. Interestingly, both men and women thought there was some validity to these
gender role stereotypes. Women envisioned a change in order to match the work done by the
men in the Kibbutz. They wanted to buy cows, chickens and vegetable gardens to be on
same terms of work as men.
-Later, (around 1938) kvutza became a stable institution. Question of childcare became an
issue. Children were seen as an important resource for the kibbutz. Women were unwilling
to give up their communal work for support of the babies. Initially, the role of child caring
was presented to a woman (de facto from their stigma of being maternal) who should also
be an educator. [Metaplot-childcare workers]. But all members of the Kibbutz helped in
raising the child. The child did not sleep with their parents, only seeing them at the
communal dinner tent.As more children were born into the kibbutz, the rate at which
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women left production jobs for more lower-status service jobs accelerated. (Lower status
here means both economically and ideologically).
-Both sexes wanted to continue their education, but men were more optimistic about their
education. A follow-up study proved this to be justified. Womens disappointment in this
area results in lowering of their aspirations. In a study of the second generation kibbutz, its
found that men had more important, leadership-role jobs. In fact, many of the womens jobs
were of the lowest echelons as more men were educated and took up better-ranked jobs.
Orit Rozin-Tzena
Women austricized they’re sell-worth for that of their childrens
The Tzenas enactment by Minister of Food and Supllies, Don Yosef (1949) led to
widespread struggle for food and supplies. Women, as the caregivers and providers for food
for family found it difficult to cope. Often, they resorted to black market dealings. They
were torn between patriotism to the Zionist state and comlying with the Tzena, and that of
their maternal role in providing for their families. Often times they sacrificed their own
nutritional needs and dietary preference to suit those of their family members.
They subsequently voted for the party, Tzionim Klaliyim which enacted The Law for Equal
Opportunities for Women two weeks before Election Day. Therefore, the Tzena led to
considerable improvement in womens rights.
Hanna Herzog Women in Israeli Society
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