Multifaceted Otherness as a Source of Empowerment

Rachel Sharaby


This article examines the unique story of Miriam Bat Avraham. Born at the beginning of the 20th century, a period in which women were excluded from the pages of historiography, she left a rare treasury of documents describing her life, showing how she coped with her multifaceted “otherness” in a cooperative community. She was an orphan entering a community based on family networks, a Yemenite, ethnically and culturally different from a closed society of immigrants from Russia, and a woman in an organization characterized by conservative gender perspectives and exclusion of women from the public sphere.

Qualitative content analysis of her archive, cross-referenced with official documents and other testimonies, shows that through acquiring education and knowledge, considered in feminist literature as change agents, Miriam succeeded in turning the community vegetable garden into a central economic branch and broke through ethnic and gender boundaries.

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International Journal of Social Science Studies   ISSN 2324-8033 (Print)   ISSN 2324-8041 (Online)

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