Doctoral Student

  • Portrait
  • Lior Yohanani
  • Email: lyohanani@sociology.rutgers.edu
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Lior Yohanani is a Ph.D. candidate at the Department of Sociology, Rutgers University. 

    Lior’s research interests lie at the intersection of immigration, political, and cultural sociology.    

    In his dissertation project, Lior explores military migrants in Israel: Jewish youth from over 80 countries who volunteer in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). Lior examines individual motivations and pathways to IDF service, structural factors and state recruitment practices, and soldiers’ military experiences and their influence on long-term migration plans. Lior employs a mixed-method approach, combining data from an original survey and interviews that he conducted.  

    Based on his research, Lior develops the concept of Military Return Migration. By this, he seeks to bring together various forms of diaspora military engagements, such as in nowadays’ Ukarine, and lay theoretical and empirical foundations for a heretofore understudied global phenomenon. 

    An article from Lior’s doctoral project was recently published in Sociological Forum: “High-Risk Transnationalism: Why Do Israeli-Americans Volunteer in the Israeli Military?”   

    As part of his research interest in practices of group and boundary formation, Lior has also researched extensively on Zionist identity-making. He recently published an article in Nations and Nationalism: “Zionist identity and the British Mandate: Palestine's internment camps and the making of the Western native.” In this study, Lior highlights the utility of researching group-making interactions in different contexts to develop a more nuanced understanding of identity-making processes. In specific, to capture the evolution of Zionist identity more fully, Lior moves away from the common analysis of Zionism vis-à-vis Palestine’s Arab and instead turns attention to the triadic relationship in Palestine between Jewish-Zionists, the British administration, and a group of German settlers. Lior shows how Zionism could claim both Western traits of enlightenment (in relation to the Arabs) and the status of the colonized native (in relation to the Germans and British). 

    Lior holds an MA in Sociology from Rutgers University and an MA in Sociology from Tel Aviv University.