Dvorah Hacohen wins the National Jewish Book Award for "To Repair a Bro­ken World "

January 20, 2021

Israeli historian Dvora Hacohen. Photograph by Ariel Hacohen. Via Wikimedia Commons.

On January 20, 2021, distinguished Israeli historian Dvorah Hacohen won the National Jewish Book Award for To Repair a Bro­ken World, a biography of Hadassah founder Hen­ri­et­ta Szold. The multitude of strong female Jewish voices present in the construction and content of Hacohen’s book speaks to an intergenerational admiration for Jewish women leaders.  

The National Jewish Book Awards annually celebrate Jewish books and authors in various literary categories. The awards often distinguish influential thinkers in the world of literature and Jewish studies. 

Hacohen, born on November 7, 1946, is a professor of history at Bar-Ilan University in Ramat-Gan, Israel, focusing on modern Israeli and Zionist history through the lens of cultural studies. Her main topics of interest include the history of Zionism, Jewish immigration in the twentieth century, the history of the Yishuv, and the evolution of the State of Israel.  

Hacohen's To Repair a Bro­ken World: The Life of Hen­ri­et­ta Szold, Founder of Hadassah highlights a important moment in Jewish women’s history and a trailblazer who dedicated her life to the concept of tikkun olam. Although Szold was one of the most famous Jewish women of the twentieth century, Hacohen’s work is the first comprehensive biography of her.  

The biography was originally published in Hebrew in 2019, translated into English by Shmuel Sermoneta-Gertel, and published in 2021 by Harvard University Press. The English version begins with a foreword by the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg just two months before her death.  



Harvard University Press, https://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?isbn=9780674988095&content=bios, accessed 29 November, 2022 

National Jewish Book Awards. https://www.jewishbookcouncil.org/awards/national-jewish-book-awards. Accessed 28 November, 2022 

Spriro, Amy. Jewish Insider. https://jewishinsider.com/2021/05/henrietta-szold-dvora-hacohen-book/ . Accessed 29 November, 2022 


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Jewish Women's Archive. "Dvorah Hacohen wins the National Jewish Book Award for "To Repair a Bro­ken World "." (Viewed on February 29, 2024) <http://jwa.org/thisweek/jan/20/2021/dvorah-hacohen-wins-national-jewish-book-award-repair-bro-ken-world>.