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Female Arab faculty staff in the Israeli academy: Challenges and coping strategies

International Journal of Educational Development Volume 62, Number 1, ISSN 0738-0593 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


This paper traced the paths of 14 Arab women who have managed to forge their way to senior teaching and administrative posts in the “ivory tower” of academic institutions; women who serve as models to empower future generations of Arab society in Israel. Qualitative methodology was chosen, employing semi-structured in-depth interviews to elicit testimony from female Arab academics concerning their socio-cultural experiences on their path towards and in their academic faculty posts. A deep observation of the challenges that these women encounter, reveals that although blocks to a career are encountered by more women in developing societies with a patriarchal structure, Arab women in Israel are excluded from academic career building in three dimensions: as women in Arab society, which restricts their appearance and advancement to senior posts in the public space, as members of a minority society largely excluded from the institutions of the majority society and as Arab minority women attempting to gain posts in Israeli academic institutions, which see themselves as serving the Jewish nation building project often to the detriment of Arab scholars. Thus "breaking the glass ceiling" involves a complicated and difficult struggle for Arab women who wish to gain academic posts in Israel. Those who succeed are able to reinforce their personal, professional and gender identity and empower their leadership and commitment to improving the status of Arab women, while often creating a hybrid identity.


Arar, K. (2018). Female Arab faculty staff in the Israeli academy: Challenges and coping strategies. International Journal of Educational Development, 62(1), 313-321. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved January 28, 2023 from .

This record was imported from International Journal of Educational Development on January 28, 2019. International Journal of Educational Development is a publication of Elsevier.

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