Alternative politics and the transformation of society-military relations: The Israeli experience

Yagil Levy, Shlomo Mizrahi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


This article attempts to explain transformations in military-society relations using models developed in the context of political participation and social learning. The authors suggest that patterns of alternative politics might evolve from the undermining of the "republican contract," that is, the exchange between citizens' military sacrifice and the rights and rewards granted to them by the state. This situation creates growing dissatisfaction among citizens that may trigger collective action, even among soldiers. Barriers to internal bargaining within the military generate modes of alternative politics in the military-society realm. Drawing from the case of Israel, the authors illustrate these strategies by focusing on conscientious objection, "gray refusal," reservists' rebellions, and a direct form of civilian monitoring of the army.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-53
Number of pages29
JournalAdministration and Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2008


  • Alternative politics
  • Israel
  • Republican contract
  • Society-military relations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Marketing


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