|Title:||The Migration Experience of the Jews of Egypt to Australia, 1948-1967: A model of acculturation|
|Authors:||Barda, Rachel Marlene|
|Keywords:||Jews -- Australia.|
Jews -- Migrations.
Australia -- Emigration and immigration.
|Publisher:||University of Sydney.|
Department of Hebrew, Biblical and Jewish Studies
|Abstract:||This thesis has tried to construct a comprehensive analysis of a clearly defined community of Egyptian Jews in Australia and France, based on the oral history of Egyptian born migrants. Built around the conceptual framework of forced emigration, integration and acculturation, it looks at the successful experience of this particular migrant group within both Australian and French societies. Like the other Jewish communities of Arab lands, the Egyptian Jewish community no longer exists, as it was either expelled or forced into exile in the aftermath of the three Arab-Israeli wars (1948, 1956, 1967). This thesis argues that the rise of an exclusively Arab-Islamic type of nationalism, the growth of Islamic fundamentalism and the escalating Arab-Israeli conflict constituted the fundamental causes for the demise of Egyptian Jewry. As a consequence, almost half of the Jewish population of Egypt went to Israel. The rest dispersed throughout the Western world, mainly in France, North and South America. In Australia, a small group of around 2,000 found a new home. Apart from those who migrated to Israel, the majority of Egyptian Jews experienced a waiting period in Europe before they were accepted by any of the countries of immigration, a period facilitated by international and local Jewish welfare agencies. My interviewees chose Australia mostly to be reunited with family members. They first had to overcome the racial discrimination of the ‘White Australia’ Immigration policy towards Jews of Middle Eastern origin, a hurdle surmounted thanks to the tireless efforts of some leaders of the Australian Jewish community. With their multiple language skills, multi-layered identity and innate ability to interact with a variety of ethnic groups, they succeeded in establishing themselves in an unfamiliar country that initially welcomed them reluctantly. As such, they can be said to have successfully acculturated and integrated into Australian society, whilst retaining their own cultural diversity. The more numerous Egyptian Jews living in France also successfully acculturated. As a larger group, they were better equipped to assert themselves within the older Jewish/French community and retain their distinctive Sephardi culture. Studies such as the present one provide insight into the process of integration and identity reconstruction, as well as the diverse strategies used to ensure a successful acculturation, and the value of a multi-layered identity.|
|Description:||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Rights and Permissions:||The author retains copyright of this thesis.|
|Type of Work:||PhD Doctorate|
|Appears in Collections:||Sydney Digital Theses (Open Access)|
|01front.pdf||340.7 kB||Adobe PDF|
|02whole.pdf||4.36 MB||Adobe PDF|
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