פריבילגית, לא הגמונית: האם ״האליטה הליברלית״ שולטת בחברה?

Translated title of the contribution: Privileged, Not Hegemonic: Does the “Liberal Elite” Rule Israeli Society?

רמי קפלן, אילון טוהר

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

According to its proponents, the Israeli government’s attempted judicial reform has been designed appropriately to check the informal, undemocratic control (“hegemony”) of the secular-liberal “elite” over key economic, media,legal, and political institutions of Israeli society. In this paper, we critically assess this argument. First, we examine the position of the secular-liberal segment in the ethno-class structure of Israeli society. We find it to be economically and culturally privileged, thanks to the group’s higher levels of education, professional dominance, and predominant Ashkenazi descent. However, we distinguish between privilege and hegemony, which requires a successful hegemonic project in orderto materialize. A historical view suggests that the liberal hegemonic project gainedmomentum in the 1990s but has declined since 2001. An important factor in the project’s failure was the economic elite’s lack of support, given that right-wing governments had offered preferable conditions for capital accumulation.Considering the neutrality of the affluent class, the dominance secular-liberalgroups in the professions, including the Supreme Court, was insufficient to make it hegemonic. Hence the argument about the secular-liberals’ “tyranny of the minority” is false, though the claim serves the rival and ascendant hegemonic project of Jewish superiority. Nonetheless, the resource inequalities in Israeli society facilitate the acceptance of the ideology of a “liberal tyranny”, and remind us that the struggles for democracy and for equality are intertwined.
Translated title of the contributionPrivileged, Not Hegemonic: Does the “Liberal Elite” Rule Israeli Society?
Original languageHebrew
Pages (from-to)130-142
Number of pages13
Journalסוציולוגיה ישראלית: כתב-עת לחקר החברה הישראלית
Volume24
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2023

IHP publications

  • ihp
  • Democracy
  • Equality
  • Hegemony
  • Israel -- Social conditions
  • Law reform
  • Social stratification

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