Abstract and Keywords
This chapter surveys the demographic development of Israel/Palestine from antiquity through the present and looking toward the future. Territory and habitability is described regarding changing boundary definitions and internal divisions that have reflected shifting political rule. Population change is examined in the long term, noting the significant historical ups and downs in population size and socioeconomic development. The development of contemporary population in Israel and Palestine reflects large-scale international migration, including mass movement of Jewish and Arab refugees. Variable fertility levels and birth rates have also significantly affected the pace of population growth. Attention is paid to the more recent balance of Jews and Palestinians over the whole territory between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River, and an overview is presented of the distribution of world Jewish and Palestinian diasporas. Finally, population projections for the Jewish people, the state of Israel, and the whole territory of Israel/Palestine are presented.
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