Citizenship, minorities and immigrants : a comparison of Turkey's Jewish minority and Turkish-Jewish immigrants in Israel
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This study investigated the legal status, identity and civic virtue aspects of citizenship and the interaction between them on the layers of international migration and minority issues with use of a comparative case. A research on the perceptions and experiences of Turkey’s Jewish minority and Turkish-Jewish immigrants in Israel regarding citizenship was conducted. The field research which was carried out in both countries - Turkey and Israel - consisted of key informant interviews, participant observation in commimity institutions and in- depth interviews with a total of 65 respondents from the sample group. The results were analyzed using qualitative data analysis technique. On the layer of minority, research results illustrated that in a society where the population is overwhelmingly Muslim, being a non-Muslim minority played roles in: a) the appropriation of the monist and universal conceptualization of citizenship in the legal status aspect; b) the endeavor to maintain Jewish identity despite the inevitable consequences of integration and assimilation in the identity aspect; and c) the discrepancy between values and actions in the civic virtue aspect. On the layer of international migration, the research pointed out that despite long years of residence in Israel, first generation of Turkish-Jewish immigrants in Israel preseryed their political culture that they cultivated when they were in Turkey. However, experience of international migration as a process seemed to impact on citizenship and played roles in; a) the appropriation of democratic norms defined by majoritarian terms in the legal status aspect; b) efforts to maintain their Turkish identity in the identity aspect; and c) the preference for complying with the general norms of Jewish-Israeli society and conversely excluding a proactive understanding of virtuous citizenship.