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Women's Studies

Anne Lapidus Lerner

Both through her scholarship and through her service as the first woman vice chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary, Anne Lapidus Lerner helped make women’s studies an important sub-discipline of Jewish studies.

Gerda Lerner

As the creator of some of the earliest courses in women’s studies and the chair of the conference that sparked what became National Women’s History Month, Gerda Lerner made contributions beyond measure to the field of women’s studies.

Lori Lefkovitz

Lori Lefkovitz founded the first-ever women’s studies department at a rabbinical school and helped create Ritualwell.org, a communal source for inclusive, innovative Jewish ritual and prayer.

Sue Levi Elwell

Rabbi Sue Levi Elwell dedicated her career to creating opportunities for Jewish women to learn and take ownership of Jewish rituals.

Tamara Cohen

Tamara Cohen’s work with the Jewish Women’s Archive and Ma’yan: the Jewish Women’s Project helped popularize lesser-known heroines of Jewish history and new feminist rituals such as making Miriam’s Cup part of the Passover Seder.

Phyllis Chesler

In her controversial book, Women and Madness, Phyllis Chesler argued that the definitions of mental illness, created by men, are often used as a means of controlling and abusing women.

Marla Brettschneider

As a political philosopher, Marla Brettschneider examined issues of feminist, queer, class-based, and Jewish political theory and activism.

Janet Yassen

Janet Yassen helped build the first rape crisis center in Massachusetts and went on to become an international consultant on preventing rape and sexual violence.

Judith Plaskow

Judith Plaskow is Professor of Religious Studies at Manhattan College and a Jewish feminist theologian. Co-founder and for ten years co-editor of the Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion, she is author or editor of several works in feminist theology, including Standing Again at Sinai: Judaism from a Feminist Perspective.

Gerda Lerner

Gerda Lerner was a pioneer in the field of women’s history. She was born in Vienna, Austria in 1920. As a teenager, she experienced the Nazi’s rise to power and became involved in the underground resistance movement. She was imprisoned and then, with her family, forced into exile. In 1939, she alone was able to find refuge in America, where she became a political activist.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Women's Studies." (Viewed on July 27, 2016) <http://jwa.org/topics/womens-studies>.

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