The Shalvi/Hyman Encyclopedia of Jewish Women

Features thousands of biographic and thematic essays on Jewish women around the world. Learn more

Zoe Klein

b. March 4, 1971

by JWA Staff
Our work to expand the Encyclopedia is ongoing. We are providing this brief biography for Zoe Klein until we are able to commission a full entry.

Photo of Rabbi Zoe Klein, courtesy of Rabbi Klein.

Rabbi Zoe Klein’s fascination with the language and emotion of the biblical books of the prophets led her to craft Drawing in the Dust, a novel imagining the prophet Jeremiah’s private life. During her senior year at Brandeis University, Klein spent a year abroad at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, later turning 600 pages of her letters home into the foundation of a novel. After she graduated from Brandeis University with a BA in psychology, she was ordained by Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion in 1998. After serving briefly at Temple Shalom in Norwalk, Connecticut, she became rabbi of Temple Isaiah in Los Angeles, where she still serves as of 2017. While studying to become a rabbi, she began writing a coda to the Book of Jeremiah from the perspective of the prophet’s imagined female acolyte and lover, Anatiya. Over time, this evolved into her first novel, Drawing in the Dust (2009). Klein has also written short stories for Harper’s Bazaar and other journals, and contributed a chapter to the Women’s Torah Commentary. Beyond her writing and her rabbinic career, she has served as a commentator on the History Channel show Digging for the Truth, which focuses on archaeological and historical mysteries. 

More on Zoe Klein

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Zoe Klein." (Viewed on May 29, 2023) <>.


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