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Gender and Sexuality

My Thoroughly Jewish Gender

A Jewess isn’t like other women – the word alone makes her stand apart. There’s a slight sense of both shaming and warning in the label, as if it’s her fault that she’s different and she should feel bad about it, and also, you should probably stay away from her—she’s a little different, that one.  “Jewess” has connotations of too much: too loud, too pushy, too big, too different (or, according to OkCupid, “more aggressive). She doesn’t perform her femininity as well as non-Jewish women for these reasons—while she’s still recognizable as a women, she’s a different kind of woman. Because of this, “Jewess,” to me, feels more than a little queer.

Jackie Hoffman Doesn't Care If You Find The Feminist Message

Throughout March, Baruch College Performing Arts Center has been presenting a series of Jewish comediennes in partnership with the Jewish Women’s Arch

Thank You, Judy Blume

Best-selling author Judy Blume is among the Jewesses with attitude featured in “MAKERS: Women Who Make America,” the film that premieres on PBS tomorrow night.

Victoria's Secret, Shabbos Walks, and Interrogating Rape Cultures

I love guerilla feminism. And I love that this group of feminists from Baltimore used online guerilla feminism to critique Victoria's Secret and promote consent. And I’m not the only one who loves this stuff! I love the celebration of consent. I love the celebration of bodies. I love the way in which the campaign directly connects the concept of consent to our bodies—by putting it on underwear—showing that to touch my body, you need my consent.

In Celebration of Our Bodies...and Our Unique Wiring

In case you haven’t heard, Naomi Wolf just came out with a new book, Vagina: A New Biography, and it just might change your life.

Andrea Dworkin

A lightning rod for controversy, Andrea Dworkin denounced violence against women, advocated women’s self-defense, and drafted groundbreaking legislation claiming that pornography violated women’s civil rights.

Dorothy Dinnerstein

Dorothy Dinnerstein earned her place as a major feminist thinker with her groundbreaking 1976 book The Mermaid and the Minotaur: Sexual Arrangements and Human Malaise.

Annette Daum

Annette Daum combined interfaith dialogue and feminism in the hopes of both defusing anti-Semitism in the feminist movement and finding solutions to the common problems facing women in different faiths.

Jessie Bernard

Sociologist Jessie Bernard anticipated feminist theory by discussing the differences between men’s and women’s experiences and arguing that quantitative studies did not accurately represent women’s stories.

Therese Benedek

Therese Benedek was a pioneer of women’s psychosexual psychology, doing groundbreaking research on the connections between women’s hormones and their emotions.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Gender and Sexuality." (Viewed on September 1, 2014) <http://jwa.org/tags/gender-and-sexuality>.

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