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Women's Rights

Nehamah Pukhachewsky

Nehamah Pukhachewsky's protofeminist Hebrew writing provide a rationale for her lifelong activism on behalf of Jewish women.

Sally Jane Priesand

On June 3, 1972, Sally Jane Priesand became the first female ordained rabbi in America.

Mary Goldsmith Prag

One of California’s first Jewish educators, Mary Goldsmith Prag came to San Francisco as a young child during the Gold Rush. She became a religious and secular teacher, an administrator, a fighter for equal rights for women, and the mother of the first Jewish congresswoman, Florence Prag Kahn.

Politics in the Yishuv and Israel

Women’s status in Israeli political arena has been shaped by two major contradictory forces that operate simultaneously. On the one hand, women are defined as part of the collective and are recognized, treated, and organized as a social category, mainly on the basis of traditional roles as wives and mothers. On the other hand, the politics of identity has been restricted by marginalizing and denouncing social identity as a basis for political action, and thus excludes women.

Political Parties in the Yishuv and Israel

Women’s parties have played a major, though so far unacknowledged, role in the social and political history of Israel: they had a significant impact on women’s participation in power centers, political and others; they played a major part in the struggle for women’s right to vote and to be elected; they brought into focus the economic discrimination against women, who constitute half of the population in the labor market; they made feminist discourse about gender equality widely known and discussed.

Anita Pollitzer

Anita Pollitzer devoted her public life to feminist politics and artistic patronage.

Anna Sophia Polak

When journalists interviewed her in 1926, Anna Polak said that her private life was not relevant, and that she would rather speak about the National Bureau for Women’s Labor. The reply characterizes Polak, who completely devoted herself to her task as director of the National Bureau.

Harriet Fleischl Pilpel

Harriet Fleischl Pilpel was a prominent participant and strategist in women’s rights, birth control, and reproductive freedom litigation for over half a century.

Alice S. Petluck

Alice S. Petluck was one of the earliest women legal pioneers. An immigrant from Russia, she became one of the first women in the United States to attend law school and to practice in New York. She was a prominent New York social reformer, who, through her example, was able to open the door for generations of future female lawyers.

Israela Oron

Israela Oron was active in effecting women’s integration into the military and in ensuring the recognition of their enormous potential in contributing to the Israel Defense Forces.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Women's Rights." (Viewed on January 25, 2015) <http://jwa.org/topics/womens-rights>.

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