Sara Davidson

Sara Davidson was born and raised in New York City on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Raised in the conservative movement, she attended school with mostly Conservative and Reform classmates as a child. That changed in high school when she transitioned to a predominantly non-Jewish school where her observance was unusual. In the eleventh grade, she attended Nesiya, a summer program for Jewish teens in Israel, which sparked a more profound interest in Judaism and Israel and allowed her to connect with Jewish teens from many different denominations. She attended Barnard College, where a women’s studies class sparked an interest in feminism and activism. During her time at Barnard, she participated in multiple rallies and protests.

1 of 1
Scope and Content Note

Sara describes her background, growing up on the Upper West Side of New York, attending Jewish Theological Seminary and a Jewish day school.  She talks about her awareness of feminism as a young person from her feminist and activist mother and other role models.  Sara details the events and experiences that helped shape her Jewish identity and come to terms with this identity.  One of them was a summer program through Nesiya.  This non-profit organization offers North American and Israeli high school students programs to immerse themselves in Jewish life and explore Israel.  Through Nesiya, Sara formed lifelong connections and a strong network of Jewish friends to whom she could relate.  At seventeen, Sara began identifying as bisexual, coming out to friends, her brother, and friends from Nesiya.  She finally came out to her parents in college, and they were extremely supportive.  Finally, Sara reflects on the intersections of her feminism, Jewishness, and sexuality and what she hopes future generations can learn from female Jewish leaders and role models.



Help us elevate the voices of Jewish women.

donate now

Get JWA in your inbox

Read the latest from JWA from your inbox.

sign up now

How to cite this page

Oral History of Sara Davidson. Interviewed by Judith Rosenbaum. 30 October 2005. Jewish Women's Archive. (Viewed on February 29, 2024) <>.

Oral History of Sara Davidson by the Jewish Women's Archive is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License. Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at