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December 06, 1968 - Image 25

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1968-12-06

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Demographic Study of Families in Israel


"Families in Israel," a volumin-
ous statistical survey brought out
by Dr. Judah Maters of the He-
brew University, is based on data
gleaned from the population census
conducted in Israel some years
ago. For the puropse of this survey
a family is a unit keeping house
for itself, and ranges from women
living alone to the large "hamulas"
(clans) occupying a compound
around a courtyard or a tent en-
Of these units, 63 per cent con-
sist of two parents with unmarried
children; 18 per cent, of couples

Honor Day School's Anniversary

Cantor Ackerman Heads
Tri-State Region of
Nationwide Assembly

Cantor Shabtai Ackerman of

Cong. Beth Abraham was elected

chairman of the Tri-State Region,
Cantors Assembly
of America, at its
recent conference
at Cong. Bnai
Other officers
are Rev. Larry
Vieder of Ades
Shalom, co-chair-
man; and Cantor
Bruce Weltzler of
Ackerman Shaarey Zedek,
Lansing, secretary-treasurer.
On the program were talks by
Cantor Saul Meisels of Cleveland,
past president of the Cantors As-
sembly of America; Rev. Israel
Fuchs of Beth Abraham; and
Rabbi Moses Lehrman of Bnai

Tri-Faith Committee
to Cooperate in Areas
of Mutual Concern

NEW YORK—The nation's urban
problems will be first on the agen-
da of a new influential committee
representing Protestants, Catho-
lics and Jews in this country.
Rabbi Henry Siegman of the Syn-
agogue Council of America, Dr.
R. H. Edwin Espy, general secre-
tary of the National Council of
Churches, and Bishop Joseph L.
Bernardin of the U. S. Catholic
Conference, are the three commit-
tee members, who will meet for
the first time Sunday. World peace
and international development are
other areas which the committee
will take up in future meetings.
Formal announcement of the
committee's formation was made
at the annual awards dinner of
the Synagogue Council Sunday.
Rabbi Jacob Rudin, president of
the Synagogue Council, called it
a "major development in the
history of interfaith cooperation
in the United States." He said
it would review all existing
Christian - Jewish relationships
and plan new levels of coopera-
In his address, Rabbi Rudin
warned that the "crisis of the cit-
ies" was rapidly exacerbating Ne-
gro-Jewish relationships. He said
the "increasingly overt black anti-
Semitism" was a source of anxiety
and disappointment to the Jewish
community, but emphasized that it
was "entirely unrepresentative of
the majority of the black commu-

Reports Fire Ruined
Odessa's Synagogue

Novosti Press Agency (APN), in

a special release, reports that the

synagogue in Odessa, a seaport
city of the Soviet Union, was de-
stroyed by fire Nov. 26.
According to Novosti: as a result
of preliminary investigations, "it
has been established that the cause
of the fire was a short circuit of
electric wiring in the matzot
bakery premises in the building of
the synagogue.
"The Jewish religious community
In Odessa is taking measures for
restoring the building of the syna-
gogue and ensuring normal condi-
tions for performance of religious
rites by believers."

without children; 10 per cent of
single persons; 5 per cent of
either widowed or divorced fathers
or mothers with children; 1.6 per
cent of people without martial re-
lationship, such as sisters or single
friends living together.

The survey reveals that every
tenth dwelling in Israel is occu-
pied by a single person either by
choice or by force of circum-
stances, such as a woman stu-
dent away from home or, for
the most part, widowed women
or spinsters.

Sixty thousand of Israel's family
units or 11 per cent are headed by
women, either widowed or di-
vorced who, in most cases, are
also the bread winners. In the 30-
54 age-bracket, the majority of
families are headed by men. In the
55-and-over age-bracket, almost
half of Israel's families, both Jew-
ish and Arab, are headed by wom-
en. Eighty per cent of Israel's Jew-
ish families consist of more than
six members.
Ten per cent of the Jewish fami-
lies or 6 per cent of the population,
are without bread winners, 57 per
cent of the Jewish families in Is-
rael have only one wage earner;
26 per cent, have two; and 9 per
cent, three or more.
A perusal of the statistical data
provided in this volume shows that
the integration of the various com-
munities in the country is mainly
a question of education and cul-
ture. In the years of mass immi-
gration, shortly after the establish-
ment of the state, many of the ar-
rivals from Europe were either
single or of fairly advanced age;
many had lost their families in the
Holocaust and their desire to
marry and raise children out-
weighed all other considerations.
Thus many of these immigrants
chose wives or husbands whom
they would not have picked in
ordinary circumstances. At this
period "mixed" or inter-communal
marriages were at their highest,
and many immigrants from Euro-
pe, especially from Bulgari a,
Romania and Greece, married
women from North African and
Asian countries. The situation be-
gan to change. From 1956 a steep
drop in the number of "mixed
marriages" ensued. Immigrants
from Africa and Asia tend to
marry into their own communities
as do Israel-born members of
African and Asian origin.

Closer analysis shows that
young men with barely primary
education tend to marry girls
with only a few years of school-
ing, and that members of Orien-
tal communities who have com-
pleted their secondary education
marry girls who have had at
least eight to 10 years' school-
ing. The number of people com-
pleting their secondary education
is increasing among members of
the Oriental and African commu-
nities. In the 1960s the number
of "mixed marriages" has been
on the increase again, showing
that the educational gap is a
most important factor.

Israel-born members of African
origin often marry Ashkenazi girls,
but only 4 per cent of the young
men who have not completed their
primary education marry girls of
European origin who have for the
most part completed their primary
schooling or who have had some
secondary-school education. On the
other hand, of Israel-born mem-
bers of families of Oriental origin
who have completed their second-
ary education and have gone on to
post-secondary studies, 19 per cent
marry Israel-born girls of Ashke-
nazi families and 28 per cent, girls
born in either Europe or America.
This shows that education is an
important factor in the integration
and accullturation of the various
Among sabras of Oriental origin
in the kibutzim, 25 per cent mar-
ried Ashkenazi girls; in the mos-
havim, the percentage drops to 20.
Low age at marriage is an im-
portant factor in the number of
children; the lower the age at mar-
riage the "greater the number of
children. The survey shows that
the offspring of families of Orien-

tal origin, born to mothers at the
age of 17 or 18, and of European
origin born to mothers in their
late 20s (and to fathers in their
30s) tend to marry in Israel at the
age of 21-22, and that their chil-
dren are born in the first years of
marriage. Thus, mothers of Orien-
tal origin give birth later than
their mothers had done, while
mothers of European origin give
birth earlier than their mothers
had done.

Only such mothers of Euro-
pean or American origin who had
given birth in their 20s, continue
to bear children also in Israel.
Mothers of American and Euro-
pean origin, owing to their
younger age at marriage, bear
more children in Israel than did
their mothers. On the other
hand, women of African and
Asian origin are adapting them-
selves to the child-bearing habits
of their European counterparts,
and their men no longer feel
ashamed if their wives do not
bear a child every year — a slur
on their virility.

There is greater proclivity among
settlers of European and American
origin to contract marriage with
people from other countries, than
among settlers from Africa and
Asia. This may be explained by
the fact that the latter tend to
marry distant members of their
own families, or people from the
same town or country, etc. The
"hamula" still has a strong influ-
ence on the marriage habits of the
Oriental communities. On the other
hand, the keen division that existed
in years gone by between the "Ost-
Juden" and the Jews of Central
and Western Europe, no longer ob-
tains among the Israel-born mem-
bers of families of European or
American origin. These have be-
come well integrated in the life
and culture of the country and the
children are mere "sabras."
As in all demographic studies,
from this report, too, it transpires
that the higher the education of the
mother the fewer children she
bears. Israel is sorely in need of a
higher birth rate, but who dares
suggest a reduction in the educa-
tion of the girls?

Friday, December 6, 1968-25

Samuel C. Feuerstein, national president of Tora Umesora Nation-
al Society of Hebrew Day Schools since its inception in 1944, was
honored at a recent Day School Convocation marking the silver an-
niversary of Day School Society and Feuerstein's leadership. Dr.
Joseph B. Soloveitchik, renowned scholar-philosopher and professor
of Talmud at Yeshiva University, presented to Feuerstein a Sefer
Tora especially written for the occasion in tri b ute to his leadership.
Shown above (from left) are Dr. Soloveitchik, Feuerstein and Dr.
Joseph Kaminetsky, national director of Tora Umesora.




• Beautiful Accomodations

• Great Stone Fireplace

• Good Food • Cocktail Bar



—31 /2 Driving Hours from Detroit—

For Reservations Call DETROIT (313) 542-3700

Detroit Council of Pioneer Women
44th Anniversary Year

proudly present their


WEDNESDAY, 12 NOON, DEC. 18th, 1968



25300 Telegraph, Southfield, Mich.

Guest Speaker

Guest Artist

Dr. Howard M. Sacher

Miss Lois Raye

For Ticket Information

Call 341-0722

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