Cosmopolitanism versus Nationalism in Israeli Education

Nov. 29, 2014

Source: Comparative Education Review. Vol. 58, No. 4 (November 2014), pp. 708-728


Education systems worldwide have served as a nation-building apparatus and national consciousness facilitators since the appearance of the modern nation-state. With the emergence of globalization in recent decades, however, a growing presence of cosmopolitanism and internationalization can be traced in education policy and school curricula. Schools currently face contradicting pressures for internationalization on one hand and nationalism on another. The major aim of this work is to inquire when and why those pressures occur in one public school system and to analytically trace these processes over time.


We analyze a test case of the transformations in the Israeli education system, focusing on history curricula, and on the rationale for such transformations during the last 20 years. We undertake a comprehensive analysis that combines qualitative and quantitative data at policy and curriculum levels to provide insight into the ways by which global and local processes influence national curriculum.

Updated: Nov. 19, 2014