1887
Volume 47, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0272-2690
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9889
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Abstract

Abstract

Students belonging to the substantial Palestinian-Arab minority in Israel – about one-fifth of the population – are required to study Hebrew as a second language (SL). This study analyzes the policy of teaching Hebrew as SL through content analysis of policy papers, questionnaires and interviews with teachers. It aims to elicit the meaning of studying the majority language by the minority in practical and ethnonational identity terms. The findings indicate that the current policy aims at promoting the acquisition of spoken Hebrew for the purpose of integration in higher education and the labor market, and that international contents are more prominent as part of the growing openness in Palestinian society in Israel. In terms of identity, the importance of Hebrew in that society has grown, but also posed challenges in terms of the minority’s sense of belonging to Israel and identification with the values attendant on acquiring the language. Overall, we identified interfaces between three identity spheres: the Palestinian ethnonational identity, the Jewish-Israeli identity as encountered through Hebrew language studies, and the global identity as represented by educational and employment opportunities and values.

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2023-04-20
2024-05-25
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