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Social Justice

Is the shul a place for political activism?

I spent last Friday night celebrating Shabbat at Temple Ohabei Shalom in Brookline, Mass., a Reform synagogue I’d never before visited. I was in awe of the chapel’s breathtaking, brightly colored stained glass windows, and I was fascinated by Rabbi John Franken’s take on Parshat M’tzora, which drew unexpected parallels between, of all things, skin diseases and marketing (all with a Jewish bent, of course). But it was a bright green insert in the Friday night program that struck me most.

Civil Rights and Social Justice Today

Consider what contemporary civil rights and social justice issues matter to us today, and how Jews and African Americans determine their priorities and responsibilities to effect social change.

Power, Privilege, and Responsibility

Analyze how power and privilege shape our relationships and involvement in social justice and activism, using sources including clips from the film Driving Miss Daisy.

Jews and the Civil Rights Movement: the Whys and Why Nots

Assume the roles of Southern Jews participating in a Temple board meeting on whether or not to support Northern Jewish activists staging a protest in town.

How Does My Identity Inform My Actions?

Consider how Jewish experiences and values – in both conscious and unconscious ways – informed the actions of Jews in the Civil Rights Movement, and inform our own allegiances and behaviors.

Art, justice, and Adrienne Rich

Here we are, poised on the edge of a "holiday weekend" in which we celebrate America's independence through those ever-meaningful traditions of barbeque, fireworks, and shopping sales.

Edith Rosenwald Stern

Edith Rosenwald Stern, philanthropist, community leader, and civil rights activist left a legacy of commitment to social justice. With the same passion and strategy, she led the Jewish community in its philanthropy, encouraged her grandchildren to pursue their own charitable interests, and strongly supported Israel.

Ernestine Rose

Ernestine Rose’s extemporaneous speeches on religious freedom, public education, abolition, and women’s rights earned her the title “Queen of the Platform.”

Emma Goldman

Never knowing whether a locked door or an arrest by the police would greet her at a lecture hall, Goldman dauntlessly continued to speak on the variants of freedom encompassed in her anarchist vision.

Jeanette Goodman Brill

Jeanette Goodman Brill was Brooklyn’s first woman magistrate and the second woman magistrate appointed in New York City.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Social Justice." (Viewed on July 26, 2014) <http://jwa.org/tags/social-justice>.

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