Exploring the religious worlds of the ultra Orthodox I have been developing, alongside my doctoral student, Nakhi Mishol Shauli, and Ben Gurion University doctoral student, Malka Shacham, a new paper, funded by the Israel LINKS I-Core program and the EU Marie Curie foundation, that explores the ultra Orthodox's integration into communal and family life. I am attaching its opening statement and inviting interested readers to write to me about it. The full manuscript should be published in 2018.
ICTs in Religious Communities: Communal and Domestic Integration of New Media among Jewish Ultra-Orthodoxy in Israel
Nakhi Mishol Shauli, Malka Shacham and Oren Golan
Since the 1990s, the integration of information and communication technologies (ICTs) into everyday life, including work, education, leisure and overall personal management, has become a hallmark of modern societies. Considering this development, British scholars (Horst, 2012; Silverstone & Haddon, 1996), established the domestication approach of technologies, contending that technological integration processes within modern families and communities are not technology-deterministic, but are largely affected by cultural and social factors. While these scholars explored modern-western populations’ legitimation of new media, further nuanced investigation of ICT integration among communities that manifest strong ideological, cultural or religious objections to modern practice is required. Despite overall resistance, an apparent boost in internet and new media use by members of such communities has been recorded and described by researchers representing various disciplines (Anderson, 2003; Busch, 2010; Horowitz, 2001; Lagerkvist, 2008; Lagerkvist, 2010). This study discusses the patterns and implications of ICTs domestication and use in Israel’s ultra-Orthodox (Haredi) community.
While ICT use has been rejected from Haredi formal educational settings, it has been largely integrated into informal home and workplace settings. Considering the apprehension expressed by religious communities—especially enclaved and marginalized groups—regarding ICTs, as well as the opportunities they embody for these sectors, we seek to examine the manner in which for religious communities, and particularly for enclaved and marginalized groups, we question how do socializing agents in Haredi society negotiate ICT use within informal educational spheres.