Introduction: The Kibbutz at one hundred: A century of crises and reinvention

Michal Palgi, Shulamit Reinharz

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The years 1909-2009 mark a century of kibbutz life, a century of achievements, failures, and challenges. Most significant is that for political, economic, social, and demographic reasons, the kibbutz has slowly moved from the nation's consensual ideal to its romanticized periphery. As is true of economies throughout the world, the Israeli economy at the beginning of the twentieth century was based primarily on agriculture. Kibbutz industry began around the time of World War II, when 13.7 percent of production workers in kibbutzim worked in industry. The kibbutzim have developed a tourism industry that includes hotels and/or bed-and-breakfast facilities, craft shops, museums, galleries, and other tourist services. The transformations in Israeli society, together with the economic crisis in the mid-1980s, led kibbutz communities to introduce changes that eroded their basic values. Kibbutz festivals and cultural activities were well known to the larger public and attracted many visitors who spent their vacation in the kibbutz.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOne Hundred Years of Kibbutz Life
Subtitle of host publicationA Century of Crises and Reinvention
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781351501675
ISBN (Print)9781412842297
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2011, 2014 by Taylor & Francis. All rights reserved.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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