Browse this section for short profiles of some of the thousands of Jewish women found throughout jwa.org. We will be adding new profiles to this section regularly and welcome your suggestions for women to add.
A bawdy comedian who inspired Bette Midler, Belle Barthe narrowly avoided trouble with the law by delivering some of her most wicked punch lines in Yiddish.
Psychologist Dorothy Walter Baruch championed a psychodynamic approach to child development that focused on the relationship between physical, emotional, and intellectual development and on rechanneling children’s feelings through play and art therapy.
Glückel bas Judah of Hameln’s remarkable life as a businesswoman and world traveler was preserved in her own words, thanks to the autobiography she wrote over the course of several years.
Michal Bat-Adam, the first Israeli woman director of feature films, has been hailed for her sensitive and nuanced portrayals of mental illness and women’s inner lives.
A largely self-taught musician, Ora Bat Chaim had a thriving career as a cellist and concert manager before becoming a prolific composer in her late fifties.
Shulamit Bat-Dori defied widely held notions about the inappropriateness of theater in the kibbutz, creating popular and acclaimed plays for the masses.
A modernist composer who experimented with dissonance, serialism, and complex harmonies, Marion Eugénie Bauer also made strides for women through her musical scholarship that revived interest in female composers.
Vicki Baum jokingly referred to herself as “a first-class second–rate writer,” but she created a new genre for popular fiction when she wrote the novel that inspired the stage and screen classic Grand Hotel.
As one of the chief nutritionists and dieticians of Palestine and the emerging State of Israel, Sarah Bavly had to improvise workable plans for everything from offering school lunches to feeding boatloads of refugees.
A talented and popular vaudeville star, Nora Bayes became an example of the limits of women’s power and independence in the early twentieth century when her attempts to command respect from producers backfired.
From cyberbullying to abortion rights, reporter Emily Bazelon has tackled controversial legal issues for Slate and the New York Times Magazine.
Evelyn Torton Beck made contributions to women’s studies and the Jewish community through her scholarship and her efforts to ensure lesbian inclusion in Jewish life.
Rachel Sassoon Beer rose to fame as owner and editor of both The Observer and The Sunday Times, making her the first woman to edit a national newspaper.
Jeanne Behrend earned praise both for her work as a composer and for her studies of South American music.
Part of the first generation of postwar writers in Germany, Katja Behrens grapples with the often difficult relationship between German Jews and the majority.
Dorit Beinisch made history as the first female president of the Israeli Supreme Court, a culmination of her many years shaping Israeli law.
Although Olga Belkind-Hankin was a formidable pioneer and midwife in Palestine, her most visible legacy remains the land she helped her husband buy, which formed the basis of many of the first settlements.
Dorothy Jacobs Bellanca made huge strides for worker’s rights as a union leader and through civil service.
A star of the avant-garde Vilna Troupe, Bella Bellarina was beloved on the Yiddish stage but faded to obscurity when her lack of English prevented her from transitioning to mainstream theater.
A renowned expert in Israeli labor law, Ruth Ben Israel drafted the legislation for Israel’s minimum wage and equal opportunity laws.
Although she began her writing career very late in life, Netiva Ben Yehuda transformed the Israeli literary scene with her explosive Palmah trilogy.
Interweaving her personal experiences with nature imagery and Jewish legends, Rivka Basman Ben-Hayim became one of Israel’s most celebrated Yiddish poets.
Hemdah Ben-Yehuda collaborated with her husband, Eliezer Ben-Yehuda, to revive ancient Hebrew and make it a truly functional living language.
Long before she became First Lady of Israel, Rahel Yanait Ben-Zvi shaped the country by helping create many of its most important organizations.
Rose I. Bender’s work as a Zionist leader reached its high point when she became the first female executive director of the Zionist Organization of Philadelphia in 1945.
How to cite this page
Jewish Women's Archive. "Profiles." (Viewed on May 30, 2015) <http://jwa.org/people>.