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The Shalvi/Hyman Encyclopedia of Jewish Women

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

Aviva Ben-Ur

Aviva Ben-Ur is Professor in the Department of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, with adjunct appointments in the Department of History and in the Programs in Spanish and Portuguese and Comparative Literature. She specializes in Atlantic Jewish history, slavery studies, and the Ottoman Diaspora and is the author of Remnant Stones: The Jewish Cemeteries and Synagogues of Suriname: Essays (Hebrew Union College Press, 2012) and Remnant Stones: The Jewish Cemeteries of Suriname: Epitaphs (Hebrew Union College Press, 2009), both co-authored with Rachel Frankel; Sephardic Jews in America: A Diasporic History (New York University Press, 2009), and Jewish Autonomy in a Slave Society: Suriname in the Atlantic World, 1651-1825 (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2020). Her current project, funded by the Marion and Jasper Whiting Foundation Fellowship, focuses on the ordeal of citizenship in Western Europe as experienced by thousands of Ottoman Jews, Christians, and Muslims during the first half of the twentieth century. She has received fellowships from the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences, the National Endowment for the Humanities, The ACLS, the U.S. Fulbright Scholar Program, and the John Cater Brown Library at Brown University.

Articles by this author

Rebecca Machado Phillips

Rebecca Machado Phillips tended her community by founding soup kitchens and aid societies for the poor and sick. She helped raised money for her synagogue for ritual objects and served as the first directress of the Female Hebrew Benevolent Society of Philadelphia.

Judith Peixotto

A gifted teacher who tirelessly promoted her students both within their schools and in the larger world, Judith Peixotto was appointed the first Jewish principal in the city of New York in 1849, at age 24. A Sephardic Jew of Spanish and Portuguese origin, she continued to teach and lead schools until her marriage in 1851.

Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) Theater in the United States

The role of women in the Ladino theater is an eloquent testimony to how they have contributed to their communities, responded to national crises, and lent their energies to the continuation of the Judeo-Spanish cultural and linguistic heritage. Esther Cohen, who wrote and performed plays in Brooklyn in the 1930s, is an exemplary model of women involved in American Judeo-Spanish theater.

Ladino (Judeo-Spanish) Press in the United States

The Ladino press of the United States, still largely unexplored, is the most vital source for the multifaceted history of Sephardic women in early twentieth-century America. Though the editors, along with much of the readership, were male, these numerous publications are an important source of information about the social status and activities of Sephardic women, and even more so, illuminate male perception of them.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Aviva Ben-Ur." (Viewed on December 11, 2023) <https://jwa.org/encyclopedia/author/ben-ur-aviva>.


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