Explore these three videos and related discussion questions by Rabbi Carole Balin.
JWA’s Encyclopedia entry on Bat Mitzvah: American Jewish Women provides additional historical context.
Wait! Bat Mitzvah is Only 100 Years Old?!: How the Ceremony Came of Age
- What surprises you about Judith Kaplan’s bat mitzvah story?
- How did bat mitzvah emerge in your community?
- What was your experience of bat mitzvah?
The Girls Who Sparked a Jewish Gender Revolution in Jewish Life
- How did bat mitzvah pioneers effect change?
- What changes in ritual have you seen in your lifetime?
- What proposed changes haven’t caught on in your community?
- In what ways have women in your community sought greater participation in Jewish life?
- What are the obstacles to change in your community? In the larger Jewish world?
- Can you think of other examples where girls pushed for change?
“I Didn’t Want To Be Called A Girl, and I Didn’t Want a Bar Mitzvah”: The Next Frontier in Inclusion in Jewish Life
- How does gender affect your relationship to Judaism?
- How is your experience different from that of your parents’ generation? The next generation?
- Do you think we should differentiate between the coming-of-age rituals for female-identified, male-identified, and nonbinary individuals?
- Will there come a time when there will be only b’mitzvah? Why or why not?
Rise Up/Bat Mitzvah at 100 is a project of the Jewish Women’s Archive and SAJ: Judaism That Stands For All.