Frequently Asked Questions
- What does it mean that the Jewish Women's Archive is a virtual archive?
- How do I find an archive for papers I have collected or inherited?
- What do I do with papers and photographs that I have saved or inherited?
- How do you decide whom to include in the Biographies and Archives Database?
- I know someone who should be covered in Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Encyclopedia or another feature. How do new entries get added?
- I'd like to honor a deceased Jewish woman. How can JWA help me do that?
- Is the Jewish Women's Archive interested in all Jewish women?
- How can men participate in the work of the Jewish Women's Archive?
- How can I correct a mistake or add to a story on your website?
- I loved your film Making Trouble about three generations of funny Jewish women!
How can I learn more about the film, buy a DVD, or arrange a screening in my community?
- I have just purchased "Making Trouble" and would love to use the image on the cover on a flyer. How can I get a copy?
- Is the Jewish Women's Archive going to make another film?
- How does the Jewish Women's Archive support itself?
- I would like to work/volunteer/intern at the Jewish Women's Archive. Whom should I contact?
- I would like to use an image on your website. Who do I contact for permission?
- What are the terms for using material on your website?
- What is the best way to reach specific staff members?
What does it mean that the Jewish Women's Archive is a virtual archive?
The Jewish Women's Archive is not a physical repository. Instead, we use our website (jwa.org) to provide access to a wide variety of resources, including many primary sources, which tell the stories of Jewish women in North America. In order to faciliate access to archival collections related to Jewish women, JWA's Biographies and Archives Database provides information about hundreds of women whose papers are held by traditional archives and libraries.
How do I find an archive for papers I have collected or inherited?
If you have photographs, letters, scrapbooks, and other objects that you think would be of interest to researchers or others beyond your personal circle, you should try to find a repository that will accept and care for them. Start by thinking about what context makes the most sense for the materials you have. Is there a local or state historical society or a professional or college archive that could provide access to those who would be interested in your life experience or career? For help finding an appropriate repository, contact the Society of American Archivists at www.archivists.org.
What do I do with papers and photographs that I have saved or inherited?
Elsewhere on this website, you will find "basic preservation tips for your family papers."
How do you decide whom to include in the Biographies and Archives Database?
Women with entries in the Biographies and Archives Database (formerly known as the "Virtual Archive") have archival collections in physical repositories. If you know of a North American Jewish woman whose papers are held by a physical archive who is not currently represented in this database, please contact us with information about this collection. The more information you can provide about the woman (or organization) and collection, the more easily we can update the Biographies and Archives Database.
I know someone who should be covered in Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Encyclopedia or another feature. How do new entries get added?
We do not currently have plans to research and write new Encyclopedia entries, or to expand other features. We are raising funds to enable adding a "people's compendium" to the Encyclopedia so that site visitors and scholars can add materials on their own, in a manner similar to that used by Wikipedia. For more information, or to become involved, please contact us.
There are a host of other ways to add entries about women to current JWA features:
- Is there a specific location anywhere in the world that is significant to the person or to the story? In that case, you can put her "on the map." To add an "On the Map" entry, you will want to be prepared with the specific location information (it can be as simple as a city or town, but if you have a street address, even better); a paragraph or two about the person/location--note that your description can include the URL of one or more websites that has more information; and, if you have them, one or more photos that are yours to upload (you can't just download someone else's work from the Internet).
- If there is a specific date relevant to her life, a piece on her would be very welcome in our "This Week in History" section (/thisweek). If the date does not yet have an entry, we would be especially happy to work with you. To submit new "This Week in History" entries, contact our This Week in History editor.
- We also have a growing section containing personal memorials, called "We Remember, and encourage you to write about any woman who has passed away in the current century who had an influence on your own life or thought. Instructions and more information about "We Remember" are posted online. (See also the previous FAQ question, and the next.)
I'd like to honor a deceased Jewish woman. How can JWA help me do that?
Consider making a contribution to the Jewish Women's Archive in her memory.
If the woman you wish to honor died after 1999, we invite you to write about her for We Remember—an online collection of reflections and reminiscences about American Jewish women who have made a difference to our families, our communities, and our world. We Remember pieces are generally 500 to 1000 words, and are written in styles as varied as the women featured. Inquiries and remembrances may be submitted via e-mail.
Is the Jewish Women's Archive interested in all Jewish women?
The Jewish Women's Archive focuses on the lives, careers, and contributions of Jewish women in North America. You don't have to be famous to be a part of our collection; we are all contributors to and bearers of history. Some of our web features and public programming highlight women of achievement who helped transform our world in a variety of fields. Other things we do online and on the ground focus on the lives of lesser known women whose stories could easily be unrecognized and forgotten. The Jewish Women's Archive holds no fixed definition of Jewish identity; we are interested in any woman whose Jewish background formed a meaningful part of her identity or who saw or sees herself as Jewish.
How can men participate in the work of the Jewish Women's Archive?
There are men on the Jewish Women's Archive staff and among our volunteers and interns. Male educators participate in the summer institute and other professional development opportunities. Men can also conduct oral history interviews and contribute to online collecting projects. Men were among the narrators interviewed for JWA's Katrina's Jewish Voices project. And, of course, men support the Archive financially.
How can I correct a mistake or add to a story on your website?
Please send us an email containing the correct information or the story you'd like to contribute. Be specific about the webpage on which you found the problem, and please provide as much of a reference as you can (whether in print or online) for the information in your correction or story, so we can ensure that the material on our website is both accurate and supported by proper citations. If the correction comes from an individual with knowledge of the subject, please tell us how to reach that person.
Beginning with "Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Encyclopedia," launched online in March 2009, we are adding the ability to post updates directly to the web. This feature is also available for entries in "This Week in History." We encourage posting updates or corrections directly to the web so that they become available directly.
I loved your film Making Trouble about three generations of funny Jewish women!
How can I learn more about the film, buy a DVD, or arrange a screening in my community?
I have just purchased "Making Trouble" and would love to use the image on the cover on a flyer. How can I get a copy?
We have publicity images for "Making Trouble" on the image-sharing site, flickr.com. While there, take a look at our other sets of photos, from other JWA projects. All photos are available in a variety of sizes and resolutions. Please don't forget to credit the Jewish Women's Archive: "Image courtesy Jewish Women's Archive, http://jwa.org"."
Is the Jewish Women's Archive going to make another film?
Not at the moment. We are concentrating on distributing Making Trouble to as wide an audience as possible.
How does the Jewish Women's Archive support itself?
With financial support from foundations, individual donors, and members. We welcome you to join us. Click here to donate.
I would like to work/volunteer/intern at the Jewish Women's Archive. Whom should I contact?
I would like to use an image on your website. Who do I contact for permission?
The Jewish Women's Archive owns almost none of the images displayed on its website. They are used with the permission of the copyright holder. Each image should be accompanied by a caption noting who gave us permission to use the image. You need to contact that person/organization to get permission to re-use an image on our site, or to get a high-resolution version of the image.
Where we do own the images, or where we have permission to share them, we often group them on flickr.com in relevant "sets". We do this so that the images are accessible, in all resolutions, at all times, for public use. All images should be credited: "Image courtesy Jewish Women's Archive. http://jwa.org". In some cases, there will be a credit for the person who created the image. This must also be included.
Please also note our collection of public domain images as part of our project, "Jewish American Women and WWII" that is part of Flickr Commons.
If you have further questions about image use and/or permissions, please contact us by email or call (617) 232-2258.
What are the terms for using material on your website?
We invite individuals to utilize content from the Jewish Women's Archive website for a wide variety of non-commercial, educational uses including school projects, group discussions, public addresses, and published or multi-media presentations. We ask that you properly credit the Jewish Women's Archive whenever you draw from content on our site. Any content from the JWA website that appears under the trademark or copyright notice of any entity other than the Jewish Women's Archive may be used only with prior permission of the individual or entity who provided that material as indicated on the website.
What is the best way to reach specific staff members?
The easiest and most efficient way to reach a staff member directly is to send email. You can contact any staff member by using the email links on our staff page.