This booklet – like so many others from gay and lesbian and feminist weddings, “un-weddings,” commitment ceremonies, brit ahuvim, ceremonies of perpetual engagement, and otherwise named rituals held over the past three decades or so – is a document that attests to the evolving tradition of consecrating relationships largely unimagined by previous generations of Jews.
Tamara Cohen is a Jewish feminist writer, activist and educator. She currently works as the Director of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Affairs at the University of Florida and the once-a-month Spiritual Leader of the Greater Washington Connecticut Coalition for Jewish Life. In 2004, Cohen directed a national study of Jewish women and feminism for Ma’yan: The Jewish Women’s Project, a program of the JCC in Manhattan for whom she worked as Program Director for many years. While at Ma’yan, she worked in partnership with the Jewish Women's Archive to create the first Women of Valor posters. Cohen has also worked as an educator with Jewish women in the former Soviet Union through Project Kesher. She has served on the boards of Joshua Venture, Brit Tzedek V’Shalom, and Jews for Racial and Economic Justice. She is the editor of the Ma’yan feminist Haggadah, The Journey Continues, as well as an author of numerous articles and poems on Jewish women’s spirituality and feminist approaches to text. Cohen holds a M.A. in Women’s History from Sarah Lawrence College and a B.A. in Women’s Studies and English from Barnard College. She currently lives in Gainesville, Florida, with her partner, Gwynn Kessler.
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The wedding of Tamara Cohen and Gwynn Kessler, 2004.
Credit: Courtesy of Tamara Cohen.