The Construction of a New Periphery in Israeli Social Geography
Building on media records and ethnographic observations among the recent masses of newcomers entering Israeli society – Jewish immigrants from Ethiopia, labor migrants from Eastern Europe and Asia as well as asylum seekers (from Africa) – I intend to devise an overview of the spatial, social, economic and political construction of that complex societal reality, its challenging manifestations, the legal and civic policies adopted by governmental and municipal authorities. That late emergence of a new social periphery in major Israeli cities seems comparable to the much older phenomenon and its related issues of social integration and securitization involving the influx of labor migrants and asylum seekers in Western European countries. However, similar currents might evolve different public responses and eventual consequences under distinct social-economic-political and cultural circumstances – the subject of my research.
Born in Tel Aviv, Moshe Shokeid conducted research among North African Jewish immigrants in Israel, among Arab residents who remained in Jaffa after the 1948 war, among Israeli emigrants in New York, and in major gay institutions in Greenwich Village (New York). He served as Chair of the Department of Sociology at Tel Aviv University and as President of the Israel Anthropological Association. He has taught and been in residence as a visiting scholar at the University of Stockholm, the Free University of Berlin, CUNY Graduate Center, University of New York, University of Iowa, University of British Columbia, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and as a visiting member of the Princeton Institute for Advanced Studies.
Selected publications: Three Jewish Journeys through the Anthropologist's Lens: From Morocco to the Negev, Zion to the Big Apple, the Closet to the Bimah, Brighton 2009; A Gay Synagogue in New York, New York 1995 (expanded edition, Philadelphia, 2003); Children of Circumstances: Israeli Emigrants in New York, New York 1988; The Dual Heritage: Immigrants from the Atlas Mountains in an Israeli Village, Manchester 1971 (expanded edition, New Jersey 1985).
Moshe Shokeid narrates his experiences as a member of AD KAN (NO MORE), a protest movement of Israeli academics at Tel Aviv University, who fought against the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories, founded during the first Palestinian intifada (1987–1993). However, since the assassination of Prime Minister Rabin and the subsequent obliteration of the Oslo Accords, public manifestations of dissent on Israeli campuses have been remarkably mute. This chronicle of AD KAN is explored in view of the ongoing theoretical discourse on the role of the intellectual in society and is compared with other accounts of academics’ involvement in different countries during periods of acute political conflict.
Moshe Shokeid is Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at Tel Aviv University. His major publications include Children of Circumstances (1988, Cornell), A Gay Synagogue in New York (1995, Columbia), and Three Jewish Journeys through an Anthropologist’s Lens (2009, Academic Studies Press). 2014 he was City of Vienna/IFK_Fellow.
Moshe Shokeid conducted research among North African Jewish immigrants in Israel, among Arab residents who remained in Jaffa after the 1948 war, among Israeli emigrants in New York, and in major gay institutions in Greenwich Village.