Opportunities and Backlash: Reforms in Women’s Military Service in Israel


Thursday, November 19, 2020, 12:00pm to 12:45pm


Harvard Kennedy School—Online

Establishing mandatory service for women in Israel in 1948 could signify gender equality; however, the military has maintained a rigid hierarchic gender division of labor for several decades. In the mid-1990s’, following Supreme Court rulings, several combat roles (including pilot course) were opened to women; the Women’s Corps was dismantled; and many courses were gender integrated.

Professor Orna Sasson-Levy argues that these reforms had a dual effect: they broadened military opportunities for women, but at the same time led to a backlash of resistance that threatens these hard-won achievements and women’s equality in the military – and in society – in general.

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