From Bolshoi to Be'er Sheva, Scientists to Streetsweepers: Cultural Dislocation Among Soviet Immigrants in Israel

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University Press of America, 1995 - Social Science - 141 pages
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When over 400,000 Soviets immigrated to Israel between 1989 and 1992, they expected to be received warmly in the Jewish state, offered jobs, homes, and financial support. Quite to the contrary, they no longer found themselves members of the life that they had once been accustomed to they were no longer in the cultural arena of the Bolshoi Ballet but in a desert trailer camp on the outskirts of Be'er Sheva and no longer did they work in an environment of respected scientists in Russia but in the unexpected profession of streetsweepers in Israel. This work chronicles the difficult voyage of nearly 200 of these Soviet immigrants from what was once home to a starkly different life in Israel. With a stirring journalistic approach, Galper presents first-hand interviews with emigres on the streets and in the absorption centers of Israel's cities, towns, and settlements. But much more than a documentary or narrative of the immigrants' experiences, this book is a scholarly analysis that reviews the existing academic literature that has addressed the Soviet immigrant experience in Israel. Not stopping there, Galper adds a new interpretation by adapting Emile Durkheim's theory of anomie in an attempt to explain the sociological phenomena that the new Israelis are encountering."
 

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Contents

DEFINING THE PROBLEM
1
POPULATION PROFILE
27
DISILLUSIONMENT IN THE WORKPLACE
49
CULTURAL ANOMIE IN A PERMISSIVE SOCIETY
75
BUILDING THE BRIDGE
119
Interview Questionnaire
127
Glossary of Organizations and Terms Relating to Israel and the Former Soviet Union
129
Bibliography
133
Subject Index
135
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