chapter  5
14 Pages

Young Women in the Zionist Movement

About one-third of the members of the Zionist movement in Iraq were women. Participation by women was a fundamental part of the movement, which engaged in intensive ideological and practical activity to equalize their status. This substantial participation of Jewish women warrants an explanation, because it occurred in a Muslim country and in a traditional, conservative society, where the inferior status of women was fundamental to the social hierarchy and the internal balance of powers. To understand this phenomenon we will examine the status of Jewish women before the establishment of the ‘Hehalutz’ movement and the struggle within the movement for women’s integration in Zionist activities.1