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."
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.
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.
I am one of those retrospective people who loves to reflect and analyze the events of the past 12 months at the end of each calendar year.
As the year comes to a close, the New York Times Magazine published “The Lives They Lived,” an annual feature celebrating the lives of people who died over the last year. The collage is a mix of people known and unknown. This assortment of stories is more gender-balanced than the regular obituary section of the New York Times, which received criticism this year for its editorial policies regarding whose stories are important enough to record.
A quick read through the food sections of many newspapers and you’ll find a multitude of articles suggesting what to make for holiday (read, Christmas) meals. On the other hand, a read through Jewish newspapers, magazines and blogs leads one to find articles discussing the relationship between Jews and Chinese food that has long defined Christmas for many in the community.
I’ve never been particularly offended by the various cultural stereotypes of Jewish women that portray us being zaftig, food-loving mamalehs-in-the-making; as someone who falls perfectly within the parameters of this description, I tend to favor anything that lends legitimacy to my, uh, lovely lady lumps. But when it comes to Jewish women’s body image, there may be a darker reality lurking out of the sight of stereotypes.
I can’t cook much beyond macaroni and cheese (I’m learning!), but I love a good cooking show. In fact, on nights that aren’t Wednesdays, it’s likely I’ll mention at least once that I wish “Top Chef” were on every evening; I love all iterations of it, including “Just Desserts,” “All-Stars,” and even the subpar “Masters.”
Last week I wrote a blog post about the "Merry Christmas/Happy Hanukkah" issue. But now I'm thinking we should all just disregard what I wrote because today I found this video of Katie Goodman of Broad Comedy singing "I'll be Jewish for Christmas," and it says everything I wanted to say and more. In song.
This weekend has been very exciting for me–the synagogue that my family belongs to is hosting Sara Hurwitz as a guest speaker. For those of you haven’t heard of her: after studying for seven years at the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale, she was given the title of “maharat” by Rabbi Avi Weiss (an Orthodox rabbi) in March 2009, and deemed a Jewish spiritual and halachic leader.
- Barbra Streisand discusses her new book on Larry King Live; thinks misogyny is "annoying." [Jezebel]
- Former JWA employee, Kate Goldwater, started a clothing boutique where the clothes and accessories are used or designed by Kate from recycled fabrics and materials. She was recently featured in Feministing's Young Feminist Enterpreneur Spotlight.
Much to the dismay of a number of Jewish organizations, the Senate neglected to vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act last month, effectively shelving it for the foreseeable future. The bill, which would have augmented current civil rights law to protect against sex-based pay discrimination, had received broad support from civil rights and women’s rights groups but faced opposition from business organizations, whose members said it would be both difficult and expensive to enforce.
Dr. Jayne Guberman felt two things when her adopted daughter announced at a pre-Bat Mitzvah family education program eight years ago, “I don’t know how I feel about being Jewish.” Guberman felt it was incredibly courageous of her daughter to share this in public. She also felt very alone as an adoptive parent in the Jewish community.
In a recent guest post on TCJewfolk, Nina Badzin advocates that Jews stop rejecting “Merry Christmas” greetings by saying “Not everybody celebrates Christmas,” “I’m Jewish,” or “I celebrate Hanukkah.” She writes: “Our disdain is embarrassing. It’s wrong. AND IT HAS TO STOP.” While some of her points are certainly valid, the piece really rubbed me the wrong way.
I just came across a Craigslist posting via Twitter (oy, my life!) looking for a Jewish woman to donate her eggs to a Jewish couple looking to conceive. This couple, through an agency called A Jewish Blessing, is offering $8,000 for an egg from a Jewish donor. A Jewish Blessing was founded by Judy Weiss, RNC in 2005 in response to the growing number of requests from Jewish families for her help in finding qualified and extraordinary young Jewish donors and surrogates.
On a cold New England night, as the first flurries of the season began to fall, members of the Jewish community in Boston piled into the sanctuary at Temple Reyim to kindle the lights of Hanukkah and celebrate four remarkable Jewish women. Sally Priesand, Sandy Eisenberg Sasso, Amy Eilberg, and Sara Hurwitz, the first-ordained North American Reform, Reconstructionist, and Conservative women rabbis and Open Orthodox rabba, respectively, gathered together for the first time, in an event cosponsored by the Jewish Women’s Archive, to share their inspirational stories, to celebrate the progress that has been made across the Jewish movements, and to discuss what still needs to be done.
The venerable TIME Magazine, known in part for its "top" lists – everything from the best inventions to the best TV shows – just published a new list of particular interest. As its name indicates, "The 25 Most Powerful Women of the Past Century" lists 25 powerhouse women from the U.S. and beyond, including three Jewish dynamos - four, if you count Madonna (though I'm never sure whether I should!). Here, an overview of the Jewesses who made TIME’s cut:
Scratching, clawing, digging. Those words don't sound very friendly, do they? When it comes to getting beyond the surface of stereotypes, they're even worse than that. They're painful.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day provides the Jewish community with a unique and multifaceted opportunity each year: it's a chance to turn our communal attention from its inward focus to a more outward-directed perspective. A chance to connect with our African-American neighbors. A chance to celebrate the man who still looms large as a model of religiously-inspired leadership. A chance to recall with pride a time when many Jews stood up for the rights of all people, black or white.
Once you’ve read this post, get to the kitchen and make this recipe because these leek patties are delicious. I even think that these might be one of my favorite recipes I’ve made for the blog so far. They’re satisfying and comforting, in the way that dishes with potatoes in them usually are, and the perfect thing to eat at his time of year when it’s getting colder outside. They are ideal Hanukkah fare but I also know that this recipe will make a recurring appearance in my kitchen throughout the rest of the year as well.
How to cite this page
Jewish Women's Archive. "Blog." (Viewed on April 28, 2017) <https://jwa.org/blog>.