Both ominous and apocalyptic, Israel's fertility regime is fraught with demographic paranoia that its Jewish majority won't survive natural Palestinian growth. To remedy this â demographic threat,â Israel has implemented the most active immigration and fertility policies in the world, boasting the highest number of fertility clinics per capita while opening its borders to all Jews regardless of national origin. This paper will examine the social impact of Israel's immigration policy, using the fertility practices of Ethiopian Jewish migrants as a case study. I aim to explore how latent discourses of racial hygiene, cloaked in national security, are reflected in Israel's geographic order and reproduced via the identities and subjugated bodies within its political terrain. As the state conscripts women into the existentialist war over land, the wombs of migrant women have also become the pivotal site for demographic battle. Respondents in this study illuminate the nexus between public policies and private practices, centralizing the role of state demographic ambitions as a key variable in fertility behavior. Rooted in Michel Foucault's bio-politics, this study shows how seemingly progressive public policies of Ethiopian integration are premised on preexisting discourses of exclusionary politics, a politics that undermines development of migrants, migrant families, and the state.


School of Global Affairs and Public Policy

Degree Name

MA in Migration and Refugee Studies

First Advisor

Ullah, Ahsan

Committee Member 1

Lesch, Ann

Committee Member 2

Jaskolski, Tina

Document Type