Haredi "Flows" in Contemporary Sephardi-Mizrahi Jewry
The essay proposes an alternative view of the Haredi movement in Sephardi Jewry in contemporary Israel, arguing for its interpretation as a religious current in its own right and not merely a political force, as it is commonly understood.
Aside from presenting this movement as grounded in a reactionist ultra-orthodox ideology, the essay, based on extensive ethnographic research, also exposes the day-to-day circumstances within which its activists operate.
The findings of this research suggest that, in addition to noting the ideological and political motives driving young Torah scholars (Bnei-Torah) to breach the geographic and symbolic walls of the Haredi encalve, we should also take a closer look at what the anthropologist Arjun Appadurai calls "flows" – cultural and social interactions based on local life circumstances or economic constraints.
This complementary view helps to promote a multi-layered and rich response to the contrastive relation typically posited between the "light" religious believers in the Sephardi Jewish communities (Masortim) and the Haredi leadership, a picture that segregates the Haredim-Mizrahim (Sephardi Ultra-Orthodox) in Israel from other ultra-orthodox groups.