The Experience of Absorption Among Jewish Immigrant Populations in Israel: Ethiopian, Former Soviet Union, and North American Communities

By Rachel Levin

Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR), April 2012

This Capstone Project explores the absorption and integration processes of three Jewish immigrant populations in Israel: Ethiopian, Former Soviet Union (FSU), and North American. Through an analysis of scholarly literature and a new collection of immigrant narratives, it attempts to capture both the communal and individual experience of immigration and integration. The research surveys the similarities and differences of each community in relation to history, traditions, culture, and customs, and explores the ways in which all of these factors have impacted the immigration process. It also examines the impacts of Israel’s policy on immigration—a policy that transitioned in the 1990s from an assimilationist stance to one of cultural pluralism.

In addition, the capstone inquiries into the nonprofits that facilitate the absorption process for immigrants in Israel. The findings suggest that organizations should follow through with aid once the individuals or families become citizens of Israel and continue to help new immigrants navigate the Israeli bureaucracy, overcome the language barrier, and find jobs that will encourage individuals to remain in Israel. Lastly, the capstone findings connect with the author’s Rhea Hirsch School of Education Curriculum Guide, proposing that Jewish schools and camps implement both scholarly research and personal narratives when teaching about Jewish communities in Israel.

Topic: Beta Israel, Israeli Jews, Soviet Jewry, Aliyah, Immigration, Ethiopian Jews, Acculturation

Name of Publication: HUC-JIR School of Jewish Nonprofit Management (formerly School of Jewish Communal Service) Masters Theses

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Genre: Thesis

Coverage: Israel

Language: English

Copyright Holder: Author

Copyright Information: Download for personal use.

Bibliographic Information:
Levin, Rachel. The Experience of Absorption Among Jewish Immigrant Populations in Israel: Ethiopian, Former Soviet Union, and North American Communities. HUC-JIR School of Jewish Nonprofit Management (formerly School of Jewish Communal Service) Masters Theses. Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR). April 2012: http://www.bjpa.org/Publications/details.cfm?PublicationID=14156


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