Israeli Women: Collectivism and Individualism


Publication Date: November 1999

Publisher: Hadassah International Research Institute on Jewish Women

Author(s): Eetta Prince Gibson

Research Area: Politics; Population and demographics; Social conditions

Keywords: Women; Political Behavior; Culture; Israeli Jews

Type: Brief

Coverage: Israel


On a social level, women have had to choose between participation in the collective at the expense of their particular interests, or adopting a feminist position that would guarantee their rights as women but jeopardize their belonging to the collective. The various resolutions of this dilemma have far-reaching implications for womenÂ’s individual and collective behavior, political organization and public policy. This paper aims to: analyze a critical phenomenon in Israeli society, with specific relevance for women, by presenting two examples of political activity; demarcate the spectrum of womenÂ’s individualism/collectivism; explore some of the implications of this tension for Israeli society; and, finally, acquaint readers with some of the political activities in which Israeli women are engaged, especially at the grass-roots level.