Immigrants and Bureaucrats: Ethiopians in an Israeli Absorption Center PDF (Adobe DRM) download by Esther Hertzog

Immigrants and Bureaucrats: Ethiopians in an Israeli Absorption Center

Berghahn Books
Publication date: February 1999
ISBN: 9781782389361
Digital Book format: PDF (Adobe DRM)

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Since Israel is primarily a country of immigrants, the state takes on the responsibility for the settlement and integration of each new group. It therefore sees its role as benevolent and indispensable to the welfare of the immigrants. This be true to some extent. However, the overwhelming effect, the author argues, is exactly the opposite: in her study of Ethiopian immigrants she reaches the conclusion that the absorption centers, which are central to Israeli immigration policy, present an extreme case of bureaucratic control over immigrants; they hinder rather than facilitate integration through the creation of power-dependence relations, with immigrants - whose lives and social structures are constantly interfered with by the officials - being cast as weak, defenseless and needy. They are reduced to helpless charges of these officials whose main goals are to expand and perpetuate their respective organizations and to consolidate their own positions within them. Thus the absorption centers, rather than furthering integration, create dependence on state control and social segregation.

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