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A Musical Wedding Toast: To Life!

Lin-Manuel Miranda isn’t Jewish; neither is his new wife, Vanessa. But the 30-year old Puerto Rican composer obviously has a taste for musicals: He’s best known for writing and starring in the popular Broadway musical In the Heights, which has won four Tony Awards, including Best Musical.

2011 Nice Jewish Guys Calendar

The trouble with nice Jewish boys and girls

Firemen and Chipendales have had their spotlight long enough! This Nice Jewish Guys Calendar turns the spotlight on the underrated characteristic that pecs and tight buns can't deliver...niceness. The Nice Jewish Guys Calendar features a different mensch for every month of the calendar year. Meet Brian, whose favorite movie is Annie Hall, and Michael who doesn't look Jewish, but is. 

"Self-Portrait (for Graphic Details)" Miss Lasko-Gross, 2010

Graphic Details: Interview with co-curator, Michael Kaminer

What began with a 2008 story about autobiographical comics by Jewish women in The Forward has developed into a touring museum exhibit.

Topics: Art

Weekly Wrap Up: Miss America fallout, Jewish feminism stalls, and more

  • Miss Massachusetts Loren Galler Rabinowitz did not win the Miss America pageant, but that doesn't mean we we can't talk about it. Ms. Magazine wonders why we haven't been protesting the pageant.
Pomegranate Taboulleh

Eating Jewish: Recipes for a tasty Tu B’Shevat table

Although there are no specific dishes that have traditionally been prepared for Tu B’Shevat, the custom of serving dishes that contain fruits and nuts has emerged.

Celebrate Jewish women environmentalists on Tu B'Shevat

Tonight is Tu B'Shevat, the "Jewish birthday for trees" that has become synonymous with Jewish environmentalism. In order to identify and honor Jewish women working in environmental activism, we are inviting you to put an environmentalist "On the Map." You can read more about that project here or watch this quick tutorial to get started.

Topics: Tu B'Shvat

The "Tiger mother" vs. the Jewish mother: The dangers of stereotypes

Amy Chua’s article in The Wall Street Journal last week, “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior,” has stirred up a firestorm of comment, with literally thousands of mothers and their friends weighing in on Chua’s harsh treatment of her daughters—an approach Chua defines as “Chinese” as opposed to a more permissive “Western” strategy. Inevitably, a comparison to the famed Jewish mother arises, and for good reason.

Martin Luther King, Jr. at the March on Washington, August 28, 1963

MLK and the Civil Rights Movement: Doing it Justice

When I say "Martin Luther King, Jr." what comes to mind? I would bet you see him standing at the Lincoln Memorial, overlooking a sea of people on the Washington Mall, and hear the evocative words of his "I have a dream" speech. I understand why King's speech at the March on Washington in August 1963 has come to represent his life's work and his legacy, and why the moment is celebrated as the height of the Civil Rights Movement.

Trees

Put a Jewish woman in environmental activism "On the Map!"

Next week is Tu B'Shevat, the Jewish birthday for trees. The meaning of the holiday has undergone some major evolution over the years; it started as a tax deadline, was co-opted by Kabbalists and then the Zionists, and is now considered a holiday celebrating the environment and environmental activism in a broad sense. At the Jewish Women's Archive, our Tu B'Shevat tradition is to seek out and celebrate Jewish women who have dedicated their lives to environmental activism.

MLK, Miss America, "tiger mothers," and Barbie - Link Roundup

Oy, what a week.  Here's what we missed.

Moroccan Chicken with Olives and Lemons

Eating Jewish: Moroccan chicken with olives and lemons

My inspiration for the dishes I write about on Eating Jewish come from a variety of places that range from the numerous cookbooks that I have around my apartment, articles concerning Jewish food in newspapers and magazines, or simply the ingredients that I happen to have on hand at the moment. However, for this dish my inspiration came from my own academic work concerning the Moroccan Jewish community of Montreal.

Representatives Gabrielle Giffords (left), Kirsten Gillibrand (center), and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (right)

Update: Rep. Giffords opens her eyes, sees strong women friends and mentors

In what is one of the most heartwarming moments of this whole tragedy, Rep. Gabrielle Giffords opened her eyes for the first time yesterday. The first thing she saw was her husband and two strong women -- her friends and mentors, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz. They had been sitting with her, holding her hands, and encouraging her.

Project Frumway, 2011

Frum, fashion, and feminism

Jewish designers are a staple on the fashion scene – famous names like Zac Posen, Isaac Mizrahi, Max Azria, Kenneth Cole, Donna Karan, Calvin Klein, Michael Kors, Diane Von Furstenberg, Ralph Lauren are all members of the tribe. A few years ago, Slate even published a story called “The Rise of Schmatte Chic”, which chronicled the fleeting trend of Orthodox Jewish influence in runway fashion.

Loren Galler Rabinowitz and David Mitchell, 2004

Rethinking beauty pageants?

I’ll admit it–the first (and usually only) thing I think of when someone mentions the Miss America competition is the movie Miss Congeniality and a group of starving, not particularly bright, but beautiful women. But after reading this article about Loren Galler Rabinowitz in The Forward I’ve begun to rethink that reaction.

Gabrielle Giffords

Arizona's first Jewish Congresswoman with attitude

The lead story in the first edition of the New York Times yesterday began this way: “Unusual is a relative term in American political life, but Representative Gabrielle Giffords fits the bill: avid equestrian and motorcycle enthusiast, repository of arcane health care data, successful Democrat elected three times in a Republican Congressional district, French horn player and wife of an astronaut.” Only near the end of the article did the Times mention another unusual fact about Gabrielle Giffords: that she was the state’s first Jewish congresswoman.

Debbie Friedman

By Spirit Alone: Remembering Debbie Friedman

Tonight I drove home to Boston with Debbie Friedman's memorial service streaming live on my phone.

Gabrielle Giffords

Jewish Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords shot, may pull through

Via Tablet:

Though we don’t know for sure, it looks like Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, 40, the third-term congresswoman from Arizona who was shot point-blank in the head during a “Congress on Your Corner” event in Tucson this morning, is going to survive. Several of the other victims of the gunman’s subsequent bullet-spraying will not be so lucky. Giffords is Jewish—the first Jewish woman to be elected from Arizona—and is a moderate Democratic representing a conservative district along the Mexico border.  

#JWA100

The #JWA100

Something exciting happened on Twitter yesterday. The result is the #JWA100. Unlike the #JTA100, the #JWA100 is not a contest. It does not measure or rank tweeters, nor is it limited to100 people. The #JWA100 is simply a list of more than 100 Jewish women who tweet -- and it's still growing.

"Debbie Friedman at Carnegie Hall" Album Cover

Debbie Friedman: In our thoughts

Fifteen years ago today, Debbie Friedman gave a sold out concert at Carnegie Hall, commemorating 25 years as one of the Jewish community's most beloved singers. Yesterday, Friedman was hospitalized for pnemonia. JTA reports that she is currently sedated and on a respirator.

Rabbi Alysa Stanton with Gail Reimer, 2010

Alysa Stanton, First Black Female Rabbi, Will Leave N.C. Congregation

Alysa Stanton, who made headlines when she became the country’s first black woman rabbi, will be leaving her Greenville, N.C. pulpit — after the congregation that hired her less than two years ago decided not to renew her contract. Stanton said the decision to leave was not hers, and that she fully intends to serve out the duration of her contract, which expires July 31, 2011.

New Year, New Links

  • "The Year in Jewish Sports" article does not mention a single Jewish woman athlete from 2010.  [NJJN] I remember the Olympic debut of Laura Spector in 2010. Can you think of any others?
"A Jewish Wedding" by Jozef Israëls, 1903

What makes a marriage?

A couple weeks ago, while visiting my parents over the holidays, I overheard something very disturbing. As I made my way from the dining room (occupied by the younger generation) back to the kitchen for a second helping of Indian takeout, I overheard my mother say to the table, "You know, I'm not opposed to arranged marriage."

Eating Jewish: Krupnik (Polish Barley Soup)

If I had to choose one word to describe the last few weeks it would, without a doubt, be indulgence. Between my birthday celebrations and holiday celebrations, I’ve done quite a lot of feasting. Friends and family have fed me delicious meals and I’ve also had the opportunity to cook some fabulous food as well. Yet, as good as it all was, when thinking about what to make for dinner one night last week all I wanted was something healthy (some vegetables, please) but that was also hearty.

Topics: Food, Recipes

2010: The Year in Review

Last year, as we closed out the first decade of the new millennium, I put together a massive link roundup of the milestones made by Jewish women over the past 10 years, the decade in Jewish women's history. True to form, Jewish women made 2010 their own, kicking off the second decade of the millennium by making headlines, breaking ceilings, and making their voices heard.

"Heather Has Two Mommies," 1989

A toast to Heather!

This month, Heather turned 21.

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