Sappho in the Holy Land

Lesbian Existence and Dilemmas in Contemporary Israel

Edited by Chava Frankfort-Nachmias & Erella Shadmi

Subjects: Women's Studies, Sociology, Lesbian / Gay Studies, Israel Studies
Series: SUNY series in Israeli Studies
Paperback : 9780791463185, 289 pages, December 2004
Hardcover : 9780791463178, 289 pages, December 2004

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Table of contents


1. Knowing Lesbians, Lesbian Knowing: Introduction
Chava Frankfort-Nachmias and Erella Shadmi

Part I: Experience

2. Lesbians in Israel: A Legal Perspective
Ira Hadar

3. The Story of ClaF: The Community of Lesbian Feminists
Haya Shalom

4. To Re-Construct the Community: Lesbians on a Kibbutz
Nurit Barkai

5. Emigration: The Case of the Israeli Lesbian
Chava Frankfort-Nachmias

6. Orthodox Lesbians: Not a Contradiction in Terms
Devorah Esther

Part II: Culture and Identity

7. Toward a History of Gay Bars in Israel: A Memoir
Amalia Ziv

8. The Presentation of Self of Young Israeli Lesbians: A Discourse on Split Identity
Diana Luzzatto

9. Crafting Multilayered Identities in Israel
Pnina Motzafi-Haller

10. From "Sexless in Russia" to "Proud Israeli Lesbian": Immigration Stories of Coming Out
Adi Kuntsman

Part III: Politics

11. Lesbians in the Women's Peace Movement
Su Schachter

12. Alliance and Denial: Lesbian Protest in Women in Black
Hannah Safran

13. A Rainbow Kufiyya
Mickey M

Part IV: Social Construction

14. Israeli Lesbians, National Identity, and Motherhood
Ruti Kadish

15. The Construction of Lesbianism as Nonissue in Israel
Erella Shadmi


List of Contributors


Essays on the experience of lesbians in contemporary Israeli society.


This unique collection examines the experience of lesbians in Israel, providing insight into some of the institutions that have helped shape that experience. The book analyzes and interprets how culturally specific political, ideological, and social systems construct lesbian identities, experiences, and dilemmas, and it also explores how a specific society is seen, understood, and interpreted from a lesbian perspective. Written by scholars, professionals, and grassroots activists representing different sectors of the Israeli political spectrum, this book provides a broad perspective of the lesbian experience in Israel.

Chava Frankfort-Nachmias is Associate Professor of Sociology and Director of the Center for Jewish Studies at the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee, and Erella Shadmi is Senior Lecturer of Criminology and Head of the Women's and Gender Studies Department at Beit Berl College.