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Education, Empowerment, and Control

The Case of the Arabs in Israel

Majid Al-Haj

Publication Year: 1995

Education, Empowerment, and Control is about the education of the Palestinian Arab minority in Israel from the establishment of the state of Israel to the present. Using a comparative approach, the study throughout juxtaposes Arab and Hebrew educational systems in terms of administration, resources, curricula contents, and returns. Developments in education are analyzed in conjunction with wide demographic, economic, and sociopolitical changes. Al-Haj explores the expectations of the Palestinian community on the one hand and dominant groups on the other, showing that whereas Palestinians have seen education as a source of empowerment, government groups have seen it as a mechanism of social control. The book also sheds light on the wider issue of education and social change among developing minorities in the postcolonial era. Al-Haj examines modernization, underdevelopment, and control in order to delineate the role education plays among a national minority that is marginalized at the group level and denied access to the national opportunity structure.

Published by: State University of New York Press

Series: SUNY series in Israeli Studies

Front Matter

Half Title Page

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Title Page

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pp. 5-5

Copyright Page

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Dedication Page

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Table of Contents

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pp. xi-xii


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pp. xiii-xvi

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pp. xvii-xviii

I feel indebted to many people for their help while this book was in the making. Foremost among them, I wish to express my gratitude to Professor Calvin Goldscheider not only for the many insightful comments he offered on the present study but also for the support and encouragement he has given me throughout my academic work...

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pp. 1-4

One of the main issues in the sociology of education is that of education and social change. Central questions usually asked are: Is education a modernizing or conservational factor? Does education shape society or is it shaped by society? Does education form an asset for development...

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pp. 5-14

The different arguments regarding the relationship between education and social change may be grouped under two main approaches: the positivist approach and the conflict approach. We shall try to delineate the central components of each approach and their significance for our study...


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General Background: Demographic, Social, Economic, and Political Aspects

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pp. 15-36

In 1914, there were approximately 600,000 Arabs living in Palestine. By the end of the Mandatory period (1947), their number stood at 1,294,000 (Gilbar 1989, 3), an increase over a period of three decades of 116 percent...

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Education in the Ottoman and the Mandatory Periods

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pp. 37-60

The Ottoman government assumed, for the first time, responsibility over educational services in the empire in 1846, when a special law was issued to institutionalize free education and the employment of professional secular teachers in addition to the religious teachers...

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Arab Education after the Establishment of Israel: Administrative Issues

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pp. 61-78

As early as November 1947, upon the U.N. decision on the partition of Palestine, the Jewish authorities formed a special committee to work out a practical plan for the accommodation of the educational system of those Arabs who were expected to be included in the areas designated as the Jewish state...

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Institutions and Pupils

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pp. 79-102

Until the early 1970s, the structure of the educational system in Israel included three levels: kindergarten, for children aged 5-6; a primary level, from 1st through 8th grades; and a secondary level, from 9th through 12th grades...

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Physical and Educational Facilities

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pp. 103-118

One of the perpetual problems facing Arab education in Israel has been the lack of adequate school buildings, a consequence of the discriminatory budgets, evident from the early years of the state, for the construction of the Arab schools...

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Policy, Goals, and Curricula

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pp. 119-142

A conventional argument postulates that Arab education in Israel functioned for nearly three decades without a defined goal (Mari 1978, Nakhleh 1977; Jiryis 1976). To support this argument, scholars have often quoted Emanuel Kupilievitch...

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Teachers and Social Control

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pp. 153-190

From the outset, one of the crucial problems concerning Arab education in Israel was the shortage of qualified teachers. As indicated earlier, the vast majority of the educated elite in the Mandatory period lived in the cities...

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Higher Education

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pp. 191-214

Education in general and higher education in particular occupy a very important place among the Arabs in Israel. If one takes into consideration the low educational starting point of the Arab citizens of Israel and the absence among them of intellectual and political elites...

Back Matter

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pp. 215-224

In this monograph, an attempt has been made to analyze the role played by formal education among the Arab national minority in Israel. Throughout, we have dealt systematically with one central question: Is education a source of empowerment for a minority or is it, rather, a mechanism of social and political control used by the dominant group...


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pp. 225-242


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pp. 243-251

Back Cover

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pp. 252-261

E-ISBN-13: 9780791494455
E-ISBN-10: 0791494454
Print-ISBN-13: 9780791422014
Print-ISBN-10: 0791422011

Page Count: 249
Publication Year: 1995

Series Title: SUNY series in Israeli Studies
Series Editor Byline: Russell Stone See more Books in this Series

OCLC Number: 42854504
MUSE Marc Record: Download for Education, Empowerment, and Control

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Subject Headings

  • Education -- Social aspects -- Israel.
  • Palestinian Arabs -- Education -- Government policy -- Israel.
  • Education -- Political aspects -- Israel.
  • Education and state -- Israel.
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