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The story of the post-Soviet Jews in Israel illustrates a general phenomenon of cultural divergence, in which history carves different identities out of common stock. Besides marking a turning point in the development of Israel, it belongs to the larger picture of the contemporary world, profoundly marked by the collapse of the catastrophic utopias of Nazism and Communism. And yet this story has not adequately been dealt with by the academy. There have been relatively few studies of the Russian immigration to Israel and none that situates the phenomenon in a cultural, rather than purely sociological, context.