State, Migrants and the Production of Extra-Territorial Spaces: Negotiating Israeli Citizenship in the Diaspora
AdvisorMarston, Sallie A
Committee ChairMarston, Sallie A
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe current research examines the relationship between the Israeli state and its migrant community in the United States. It argues that under conditions of accelerated globalization, the Israeli state has sought to reach out and re-territorialize its migrants' identities in order to strengthen their territory-based Israeli identity and, ultimately, return them to Israel. Focusing on the role played by cultural practices in the process of reterritorialization - which takes place in newly created extra-territorial spaces - it argues that a new type of transnational contract, namely diasporic citizenship has emerged that defines the relationship between the state and its citizens abroad. Cultural practices from above (state-produced) re-assert migrants' identities as national subjects and include them in the expanding incorporation regime of the Israeli state. At the same time, cultural practices from below (migrants'-produced) have been instrumental in their quest to (re)- imagine themselves as part of a trans-territorial Israeli nation. The research uses the Israel Independence Day Festival in Los Angeles to examine the extent to which it has become an extra-territorial space where state officials and migrants negotiate their often conflicting notions of Israeli culture, identity, and citizenship. It is this continuous process of negotiation, the research concludes that (re)-produces new types of affiliations between the state and its subjects overseas