"a collective of individuals": Between self and solidarity in a Rainbow gathering

Iddo Tavory*, Yehuda C. Goodman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Using ethnographic fieldwork, this paper examines the relation between practices of individuality and solidarity in an alternative spiritual gathering called "The Rainbow" in Israel. Following the "practice turn" in sociological theory, we chart the social situations in which solidarity and individuality are formed, and the ways in which their multiple uses frame their meanings. We demonstrate that though members use the communal arena to express their individuality, the self they celebrate is constantly molded by practices creating solidarity. Through institutionalized rituals, everyday metaphors and interactions, and the formation of friendships in the field, members both relate to the community as a site for the assertion of selfhood, and incorporate the communal into the very definition of the self - thus weaving them together in action.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)262-284
Number of pages23
JournalSociology of Religion
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2009


  • Community
  • Individualism
  • Israel
  • New Age
  • Practice theory
  • Solidarity


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