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Activism

Judith Light

In her four decades as an Emmy- and Tony-winning actress, Judith Light has repeatedly taken on challenging and unconventional roles, from a housewife-turned-prostitute on One Life to Live to ex-wife of a transgender woman on the acclaimed Transparent.

Hemdah Ben-Yehuda

Hemdah Ben-Yehuda collaborated with her husband, Eliezer Ben-Yehuda, to revive ancient Hebrew and make it a truly functional living language.

Netiva Ben Yehuda

Although she began her writing career very late in life, Netiva Ben Yehuda transformed the Israeli literary scene with her explosive Palmah trilogy.

Ruth Ben Israel

A renowned expert in Israeli labor law, Ruth Ben Israel drafted the legislation for Israel’s minimum wage and equal opportunity laws.

Odetta Holmes, Singing for the Voiceless

Through her blues music, Holmes inspired people all over America to take a stand for black equality. She performed at numerous rallies, advocating for civil rights for all; in fact, her music is often called the “soundtrack of the Civil Rights movement.” 

#Blacklivesmatter Matters

2014 was a year when police brutality against black men was brought to the forefront of the American consciousness. The police killings of Eric Garner, Michael Brown, and Tamir Rice, along with no legal sentences for the perpetrators, arranged themselves into a pattern that was difficult for the public to miss. Among the responses were protests, riots, classroom discussions, and the swift rise of the hashtag “#blacklivesmatter.”

Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar’s Pursuit of Happiness

Of all the things I take for granted, the value I most often overlook is democracy. To reside in a thriving democratic country that gives a voice to its people and places checks and balances on its government is more than I can ever fully appreciate, and even though I have doubts about certain policies, at least I have the opportunity to voice these questions. As a young writer, I am especially grateful for my ability to articulate my opinions without fear of harm.

Rose Finkelstein

A lifelong labor activist, Rose Finkelstein organized pay raises and better hours for women workers throughout New England.

Fania Mindell

After co-founding America’s first birth control clinic with Margaret Sanger in 1916, Fania Mindell was arrested and convicted of breaking the Comstock Act for her efforts to make birth control available to women.

Miriam Baratz

A founding member of Kevuzat Deganyah Aleph, Miriam Ostrovsky Baratz forced the Yishuv to confront its sexist assumptions, first as one of the rare female agricultural laborers and then as her kibbutz’s first wife and mother.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Activism." (Viewed on August 4, 2015) <http://jwa.org/topics/activism>.

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