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Women's Rights

Sylvia Bernstein Seaman

Sylvia Bernstein Seaman fought for women’s suffrage as a teenager, then became an important voice for second wave feminism as the first person outside the medical profession to write about breast cancer.

Rosika Schwimmer

Rosika Schwimmer’s uncompromising vision of women’s equality and world peace helped advance the women’s movement but caused a backlash that cost Schwimmer everything.

Adeline Schulberg

Adeline Schulberg’s long and winding career path led her from activist to Hollywood agent and back again.

Alice Salomon

Alice Salomon was honored as one of the founding mothers of social work in Germany for both the direct service organizations she created and her role as founding president of the International Association of Schools of Social Work.

Fredrica Wechsler, 1929 - 2014

My mother was a remarkable woman.   She grew up at 71 Ocean Parkway, an only child, with my beloved Grandma Rebecca and Grandpa Joe and although she nearly flunked math at Erasmus High in Brooklyn, she went on to become the night editor at the University of Michigan’s Michigan Daily after convincing her parents that she wanted to go all the way to the Midwest for college. After all, once my grandparents had arrived from Poland and Finland respectively in the earlier part of the twentieth century, why did she need to go so far away?

Anita Pollitzer

As a party organizer for the National Woman’s Party, Anita Pollitzer travelled across the country to earn crucial support for ratifying the Nineteenth Amendment.

Harriet Fleischl Pilpel

As general counsel to both Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union, Harriet Fleischl Pilpel helped shape the arguments for reproductive rights in the years leading up to Roe v. Wade.

Alicia Suskin Ostriker

Alicia Suskin Ostriker’s award-winning poetry and groundbreaking literary criticism are profoundly shaped by her feminist activism.

Rivka Haut, 1942 - 2014

I came to know Rivka over forty years ago, through the learned book that her husband, Rabbi Irwin Haut, wrote about the agunah problem. Whether she influenced him to write or whether his work inducted her into the world of agunah activism, I do not know, but she became increasingly passionate about helping agunot, hands on as well as dealing with the theoretical-halakhic issues.

Shulamit Aloni, 1928 - 2014

When Shulamit Aloni, one of Israel’s first feminist leaders, presented a bill protecting women from domestic violence, some of her male fellow MKs mocked her. “Go back to the kitchen and get me a cup of coffee,” some of the men said, laughing, as they dismissed the seriousness of her work.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Women's Rights." (Viewed on July 30, 2015) <http://jwa.org/topics/womens-rights>.

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