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Women's Rights

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.

Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in Israel, 1948-2000

Women’s organizations have been at the forefront of the struggle for women’s equality in Israel. In the early years of Israel’s statehood, they played an active role in providing women with essential services such as child-care and vocational training. In later years they concentrated on the struggle for gender equality, employing educational and political strategies.

Ora Namir

One of Israel’s outstanding advocates and legislators in the field of social justice in general and women’s rights in particular, Ora Namir was the only child of pioneering agricultural laborers in the moshav of Hoglah in the central Sharon region of Israel (founded in 1933).

Ruth Muskal

Born in Israel, Ruth Muskal studied education at both the [jwa_encyclopedia_glossary:342]Kibbutz[/jwa_encyclopedia_glossary] Seminar and in university. She joined the IDF in 1955 and filled various positions until her promotion to OC Women’s Corps (See “CHEN”: Women’s Corps in the Israel Defense Forces).

Lina Morgenstern

Lina Morgenstern was a woman of action rather than of words; she rolled up her sleeves when necessary and set to work, coordinating, organizing, fighting for her ideals. She believed that social activity in the framework of the women’s movement would bring about her ideal of universal human love, the “brotherhood of mankind” and her hope of full integration of Jews into Germany’s civil society.

Mo'ezet Ha-Po'alot (Council of Women Workers)

Founded in 1921 following the establishment of the Histadrut (General Federation of Workers in Israel), the Mo’ezet ha-Po’alot (Council of Women Workers) was the elected apparatus of Histadrut women, subordinated to the Va’ad ha-Po’el, the executive committee of the Histadrut.

Rosa Manus

Though Rosa Manus was one of the leading Dutch feminists before World War II, her memory has since been overshadowed by more famous contemporaries such as Aletta Jacobs. The fact that her life was also interwoven with pacifism, the struggle against fascism and the decline of Dutch Jewry, has largely been forgotten. More than other feminists, Rosa Manus suffered from the difficult position in which Jews were placed following the rise of fascism in Germany, when many women’s organizations were anxious to avoid being perceived as too Jewish. Carrie Chapman Catt, who regarded her as a pupil, assistant and adopted daughter, remembered her as one of the first to die for “the cause,” ignoring the fact that Rosa Manus had been arrested for her pacifist activities and deported as a Jew. And although her name appears on the memorial to those who died in Ravensbrück, there are several witnesses who testify to her having been taken, gravely ill, to Auschwitz.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Women's Rights." (Viewed on November 22, 2014) <http://jwa.org/topics/womens-rights>.

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