Beyond the Official Version? Israeli Teachers' Perspectives on Citizenship Education

Mohammad Massalha, Gal Levy, Halleli Pinson, Ayman Agbaria

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


In societies under protracted conflicts the challenge of teaching about citizenship is inevitably overshadowed by the conflict itself. Stemming from a larger research project, aiming at understanding the dilemmas and challenges of citizenship education at all levels of the Israeli educational system, and across its various branches (general, religious and Arab), this paper is set to examine how teachers circumvent these difficulties and confront the challenge of teaching about citizenship in a society where citizenship is stratified and divided. More particularly, we offer a thematic analysis of in-depth interviews with teachers, from which we learn on the ways teachers, while not avoiding the concept of citizenship altogether, employ more multi-dimensional (educational) acts towards citizenship giving it different meanings and shaping it in various ways as either 'localized' or `integrative` conceptions (or in between). This, we propose, allows the teachers to deal with the challenges of teaching about citizenship, yet without directly confronting the system that requires from them to teach only the official version of citizenship. We specifically explore, based on the teachers' own perception, what practices are used in delivering their own conceptions of "citizenships", and how they confront the explicit and implicit supervision of the Ministry of Education.
Original languageEnglish GB
Title of host publicationXVIII ISA World Congress of Sociology
StatePublished - 2014

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