Beba Idelson was an Israeli politician and dedicated Zionist activist. She served as a member of the Knesset for sixteen years and was instrumental in shaping the character of the State of Israel, especially as it pertained to women’s rights.
The Iggeret ha-Kodesh is a Kabbalistic work with contested authorship, written in the second half of the twelfth century. The work is a kabbalistic interpretation of sexual relations and its sacred spirituality between a married couple.
Medieval European representations of Jewish women by Christian authors reveal anxieties about Jews and their imagined intentions. Some of these writings portray young Jewish women as easily seduced by Christian men and Christian teachings; others depict a beautiful but malevolent Jewish woman who leads a Christian boy to his ritual death. Another motif, supposed sexual liaisons between a ruler and a Jewish woman, expresses Christian perceptions of Jewish threats to the Christian state.
The first woman to be awarded a doctorate in physical chemistry at a German university, Clara Immerwahr’s her achievements were long overlooked by male-dominated university circles. Immerwahr committed suicide in protest of her husband’s involvement in the implementation of gas attacks during World War I. Recognized only posthumously, her name has become linked with moral responsibility in science.
Inés of Herrera was a twelve-year-old prophetess whose message of salvation appealed to the conversos of Castile at the end of the fifteenth century. The Inquisition was anxious to quickly deal with this threat, trying many girls and women as heretics as of 1500; their confessions reveal details about this movement.
Only men are legally obligated to procreate, but there is disagreement over whether that obligation compels a man to divorce his wife after ten childless years. The initial infertility of the matriarchs reinforces the efficacy of prayer by demonstrating that the individual matriarchs’ suffering and supplications are what provoked a divine response.
Judith Brin Ingber is a dancer, choreographer, writer, and dance historian who fostered the contemporary research field of Jewish dance studies. Ingber established conversations regarding how dance is a Jewish cultural phenomenon. She fostered multiple generations of Jewish dance researchers, students, dancers, and writers.
Marriages between Jews and people of other faiths have long fascinated scholars, clergy, and communal leaders, who often considered the choice of a Jewish spouse as an indication of the strength of ethnoreligious identity and commitment to perpetuating Judaism and the Jewish people. However, many Jewish women who intermarry in the United States continue to identify Jewishly, engage in the Jewish community, and raise Jewish children.
This entry uses gender as category of analysis and change over time to illuminate the experience and meaning of interfaith marriage for Jewish women in America. It describes how women navigated their ethnoreligious identities when they married Gentile men, the influences of feminism, the rise of ethnic consciousness, and parenthood.
International Coalition for Agunah Rights (ICAR) was created to solve the problem of women whose husbands refuse to grant them Jewish divorces, through a combination of education and activism. Although some of the member organizations remain active in North America, ICAR itself has become a primarily Israel-focused coalition.
The International Council of Jewish Women (ICJW) is a Jewish women's organization established at the beginning of the twentieth century, which evolved with the needs and events over time. As a women’s NGO, ICJW participates in a variety of projects promoting women’s rights and human rights, motivated by its roots in Judaism.
The International Ladies Garment Workers Union was founded in 1900 by eleven Jewish men who represented seven local East Coast unions with heavy Jewish immigrant populations. Initially excluded from the union, women began organizing and eventually developed bargaining power after the Uprising of the 20,000 in 1909.
The Irgun Zeva’i Le’ummi was a Jewish underground armed organization formed in 1931 to fight British mandatory forces and Palestinian Arabs and their allies in the effort to form a Jewish state. Women were involved in all parts of the organization, from propaganda production and distribution to combat.
Edith Somborn Isaacs made an impact on New York City both through her own volunteerism and by successfully running her husband’s campaigns for public office.
The Hebrew term ishah hashuvah appears in seven sugyot in the Babylonian Talmud, though its meaning is not clear. It seems to refer to a woman of some wealth or importance.
The Israel Women’s Network (IWN) was founded in 1984 and is responsible for many of the feminist breakthroughs in Israel. Though the success of IWN led to an undesirable degree of politicization, it remains an active agent in Israeli feminism.
In various parts of Brazil, women have taken on important roles for the Israeli dance establishment as a sociocultural practice within their Jewish communities. The text presents the names of some pioneer women in this process and other ones that have been preserving this traditional Jewish expression of dance for years.
Dance has been an integral element of the Jewish community since biblical times. An intense desire to share the joy of dance, coupled with a strong identification with both Israel and their Jewish roots, spurred a group of influential women to create a flourishing movement of Israeli folk dance in North America. Today, Israeli folk dance enjoys a wider popularity than ever.
Women writers faced many obstacles in the early years of modern Hebrew, but by the end of the twentieth century they had overcome marginalization to become a central part of the country’s literature. The achievements of women’s writing in Hebrew rank among the unquestionable triumphs of Israeli feminism.
A study of the role of Jewish women in household formation, the household, and household dissolution, as well as their engagement in Jewish culture in early modern Italy, raises the question of how much of Jewish practice reflected the context of the surrounding society and how much engaged options in traditional Jewish practices, which were selected to meet their own needs. Despite the wealth of information about some well- known women and reports of the activities of many unnamed women, Jewish women, like Christian women, still functioned in the context of women and the period does not represent a Renaissance for women.
Jewish women were crucial both to changes in post-emancipation Italian Jewish life and to the overall condition of women in modern Italy. This article reflects on the changes in the role of Jewish women in modern Italy within the Jewish press and institutions, their activism in shaping a secular civil society, and their experiences through the Fascist regime, the trauma of the 1938 Racial laws, emigration, resistance, deportation, survival, and reconstruction.