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Feminism

Looking Over the Mechitza

Although I wish they were, feminism and Judaism are not congruous in my life. I am a feminist. I am a Jew. But when I put them together, they clash. In my life, being Jewish means that I am a part of my Modern Orthodox community, it means that I go to shul every week and sit in my designated place on the left side of the mechitza, the low wall that separates men and women during prayer.

Questioning My Identity from the Backseat

Why am I both burdened and liberated by the rich history that precedes me, and how do I identify myself with it accordingly? I remember sitting in a car outside of a Dunkin Donuts when I first pondered this question. Watching the cars drive along the highway, I tried to discern the faces of the drivers—discover their races, religions and genders in order to associate their appearances with stereotypical status and privilege. I wondered about myself—how I could fit in among the mosaic of peoples when my own identity seemed so misshapen.

Sex Educators

Teaching women about their bodies, their rights, and their pleasure

Torah Reading Between the Lines

A few Saturday mornings a month, my Dad and I go to synagogue to read Torah. We drive there, even though my synagogue is within walking distance; my Dad often has errands to run, or I have a dance class I need to make, two activities that cannot be accomplished efficiently through walking. We pull into the parking lot, pry open the synagogue’s heavy wooden doors, and take our seats at the very back of the sanctuary. Within thirty minutes, as the Torah is being lifted in the air for the ritual of hagbah, we are out of there.

I Got It From My Mama: Feminism, Judaism, and Me

Many things about my lifestyle confuse my grandmother.

She does not understand why I wear white after Labor Day, how I can text so quickly, or why I’m vegetarian.

And four years ago, she could not understand how my name would be read as I was called to the Torah to become a Bat Mitzvah.

Traditionally, I would be Ilana bat (my mother's Hebrew name, which happens to be Rachel) and (my father's Hebrew name.) The issue with that formula was, I only had one parent. I have only ever had one parent.

Miriam Zoila Pérez

As the founder of Radical Doula, Miriam Zoila Perez created a network for birthing coaches to support people of all genders, races, and economic backgrounds through pregnancy, birth, miscarriage, and abortion.

Jaclyn Friedman

Jaclyn Friedman voiced new possibilities for sex-positive feminism and a rejection of rape culture as editor of Yes Means Yes: Visions of Female Sexual Power and a World Without Rape.

Barbara Kruger

Barbara Kruger used her classical training in design and her experience in the fashion industry to create conceptual art that pushed audiences to question assumptions about gender, violence, patriotism, and their relationship to the media.

Beatrice Kaufman

A member of the famed Algonquin Round Table, Beatrice Kaufman made an impact on the American literary scene both for publishing important modernist writers and for writing her own subversively feminist stories and plays.

It Ain’t Easy Being A Feminist Sports Fan

It ain’t easy being a feminist sports fan.

Sure, we’ve got Mo’ne Davis and Serena Williams, Jackie Joyner-Kersee and Hope Solo, but it’s still a man’s world. The news headlines related to sports stars’ personal lives often bring up the cold hard truth: sports and feminism are a tough combination to make work.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Feminism." (Viewed on October 21, 2014) <http://jwa.org/topics/feminism>.

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