Young Arab women at the crossroads between the traditional and the modern: Analysis of life stories of Arab Muslim students who have left home to achieve higher education

Zeev W. Greenberg, Dafna M. Sagiv-Reiss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article deals with young Arab Muslim women who have left their homes in order complete their academic education. An analysis of their life stories demonstrates the influence of the nuclear family in encouraging their studies and the expectations to be more independent than their mothers. In addition, the stories present the difficulties these students experience in the personal context, difficulties of being cut off from their families. Moreover, difficulties in the social and cultural contexts, in their insecurity at using the Hebrew language, and threatening difficulties which stem from a sense of being unsuited to the new academic world especially as being a woman and coming from a minority group. Furthermore, their stories reveal difficulties which derive from gender construction and informal systems of control and supervision initiated by male students in institutions of higher learning. The findings also attest to the practices of resistance, opposition and coping with this complex reality by these young women. (157 words).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-154
Number of pages12
JournalMediterranean Journal of Social Sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Arab Muslim women
  • Gender
  • Higher Education
  • Life Stories

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Arts and Humanities
  • General Social Sciences
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (all)

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