Feminism, Family, And Identity In Israel: Women's Marital Names

Hardcover | April 15, 2011

byMichal Rom, Orly Benjamin

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One of the less discussed achievements of the women’s movement is the option to reject the patronymic naming system (or the convention of women replacing their own family names by their husbands’ names when they get married). This book offers an analysis of Israeli women’s naming practices while tracing vocabularies of nationalism, orientalism and individualism in women’s accounts. Such vocabularies are claimed to reinforce the local dominance of familism rendering women's sense of belonging, ambivalent. The book is an account of women's agency and positioning operating within ethnic stratification structures, showing how the achievements of the women's movement require continuous organized protection.

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One of the less discussed achievements of the women’s movement is the option to reject the patronymic naming system (or the convention of women replacing their own family names by their husbands’ names when they get married). This book offers an analysis of Israeli women’s naming practices while tracing vocabularies of nationalism, ori...

Michal Rom is a lecturer in Sociology and Gender Studies at Bar Ilan University, Israel. Orly Benjamin is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Gender Studies at Bar-Ilan University, Israel. 
Format:HardcoverDimensions:270 pages, 8.89 × 5.7 × 0.86 inPublished:April 15, 2011Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230100155

ISBN - 13:9780230100152

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Table of Contents

Local Context of Identity Formation * Naming Identities -- Politics of Identity * Israeli Ambivalence and Gender Relations * The Appropriate Name * Getting More out of It -- Identity Positioning through the Name * Time and Space Dimensions of Self Naming * Name in Relations * Personal Notes on our Naming Stories * Naming Practices and Research Methods

Editorial Reviews

“Using feminist theory and first-hand sociological research, Rom and Benjamin have produced a fascinating insight into a rarely studied but widespread sociocultural practice. They investigate when and why women do and do not change their names on marriage and come up with data on identity, family, and ethnicity that will surprise and inform you. You’ll look at your society’s wedding announcements with new eyes.” --Judith Lorber, Professor Emerita, Graduate Center and Brooklyn College, City University of New York, and author of Breaking the Bowls: Degendering and Feminist Change and Paradoxes of Gender“As Rom and Benjamin remind us, because most countries’ family naming practices diminish women’s identity, the international feminist movement fought hard and succeeded legally to give women more naming choices upon marriage. Strangely, however, women have not embraced this freedom. In this tightly argued and intriguing study of married women’s name choices in Israel, these creative scholars explain why pre-feminist practices persist and what impact conservative name choice has on gendered power relations in society.” –Shulamit Reinharz, Jacob S. Potofsky Professor of Sociology, Director of the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute, and Director of the Women’s Studies Research Center, Brandeis University“This is a book providing readers with much knowledge about naming practices in society and their roles in defining self, identity, biography, and history. More importantly, it is a book about the power of naming and how conflicts about names among women and men have much to do with processes of subjugation as well as of liberation. With a point of departure in what the authors call “the cultural loading of the name,” the book provides a multifaceted account of how women and men use different strategies in struggling to define themselves and their identities in contemporary Israeli society.” --Irene Levin, Professor, Oslo University College, Norway