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Social Mobility in Europe$
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Richard Breen

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780199258451

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2004

DOI: 10.1093/0199258457.001.0001

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Opportunities, Little Change: Class Mobility in Israeli Society, 1974–91

Opportunities, Little Change: Class Mobility in Israeli Society, 1974–91

(p.315) 13 Opportunities, Little Change: Class Mobility in Israeli Society, 1974–91
Social Mobility in Europe

Meir Yaish

Oxford University Press

Engages with the long lasting debate in sociology concerning the consequences of industrialization process for social mobility. It is argued that Israeli society provides one of the most adequate tests of this thesis. In this context, then, the analysis in this chapter is guided by two main questions: (1) has equality of opportunity in Israeli mobility increased over time, (2) has the mobility process in Israeli society become more meritocratic over time. The analysis in this chapter is based on data from two nationally representative surveys that were tailored to the study of social mobility–the 1974 and the 1991 Israeli mobility surveys. It is shown that Israelis (men and women alike) experience high level of social mobility and fluidity–but with little temporal variations. It is also shown that while the Israeli stratification system has some meritocratic components, these did not gain in strength over time. Thus it is concluded that, in the Israeli context, social mobility, and the industrialization process do not go hand in hand.

Keywords:   equality of opportunity, industrialization, Israel, meritocracy, social fluidity, social mobility, temporal changes in social mobility

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