Volume 16, 2011 : The Emerging Second Generation of Immigrant Israelis

The Children of 'Russian' Immigrant Parents in Israel:
Identity and Social Integration


Larissa Remennick
Department of Sociology & Anthropology
Bar-Ilan University


Paulina Celnik
Beit-Berl Academic College


The paper is based on a recently-completed study among Israeli school students born of 'Russian' immigrant parents of the 1990s wave, who comprise the emerging 2nd generation of Russian Israelis. Over 300 middle- and high-school students from six schools located across Israel completed structured questionnaires, participated in focus groups and in-depth interviews. The findings shed light on the identity dilemmas of 2nd generation 'Russians' and underscore the crucial role of their early school and peer experiences in the overall adjustment and integration in Israeli society. We conclude that local-born children of immigrants may still experience significant adversity, both at school and in social contacts, particularly if their families are single-parent and/or have limited personal resources for protecting their offspring from the 'pains of absorption'.

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