Feminism

Content type
Collection

Meyera Oberndorf

Meyera Oberndorf blazed trails in Virginia politics as the first woman and first Jewish mayor of Virginia Beach, the largest city in the Commonwealth. From 1988 to 2008, she stood up to a long-ingrained good old boy network and led the city through difficult issues including racial unrest, all while staying closely connected to her citizens as “the people’s mayor.”

Adrienne Cooper

A versatile performer, scholar, administrator, and activist who worked in the fields of Yiddish culture, Jewish music, social justice, and feminism, Adrienne Cooper inspired international audiences with her compelling performances and nurtured a generation of musicians, academics, and advocates.

Natalie Portman

Natalie Portman is an actress and activist who takes pride in her acting roles as a reflection of her activism. Her ultimate goal is to raise awareness of the role and importance of women.

Jewish Women in Contemporary Popular Music: 1950 to Present

Since 1950, Jewish women musicians have moved with the times, performing with bands, as solo acts, and as songwriters. They have included mainstream pop performers and rock, punk, and Riot Grrrl musicians. Some Israeli artists have reached international audiences, often via the Europvision Song Contest.

Joey Soloway

Activist, director, and creator of groundbreaking and critically acclaimed series such as Transparent, I Love Dick, and others (and writer for series such as Six Feet Under and United States of Tara), Joey Soloway (previously known as Jill) is also a social activist, considered one of the strongest advocates for women, queer, and nonbinary identities in Hollywood. Soloway identifies as nonbinary, and Judaism, feminism, and modern Jewish culture are resonant themes in their work.

Women in Israeli Cinema

 For many years, women played a secondary role in Israeli cinema, with little voice of their own and limited largely to objects of the male gaze. More recently, women filmmakers, often emphasizing autobiographical narratives, have begun to critique the patriarchal family and present new perceptions of female sexuality and female social roles.

Audrey Flack

The only female member of the founding group of photorealists, New York-born painter and sculptor Audrey Flack is especially recognized for the feminine content in her art. Her feminist sensibilities manifest in both her pioneering paintings, which often consider stereotypes of womanhood, and her sculptures, frequently depicting goddesses and other strong female figures. Flack’s work appears in prominent collections around the world.

Martha Ackelsberg

Martha Ackelsberg is a Jewish feminist lesbian anarchist activist, community leader, and academic. She is a leading scholar of anarchism and of anarchist women’s organizations of the Spanish Civil War. A founder and/or early leading visionary in pivotal United States Jewish developments, Ackelsberg has been a key voice shaping feminist, lesbian, and havurah contributions to twentieth- and twenty-first century Jewish life.

Jewish Women Watching

Jewish Women Watching was a Jewish feminist activist group in the 2000s. It fought against sexism, racism, and economic inequality in the Jewish community and was known for its members’ anonymity, costumes, shocking forms of protest, and witty press releases.

Partnership Minyan

The Partnership Minyan is an Orthodox feminist prayer service that seeks to maximize women’s involvement in prayers while adhering to Jewish law, or halakha, by placing the bima (podium) in the middle and allowing women to lead select sections, although women do not count as part of the quorum of ten men. There are currently over 80 Partnership Minyanim around the world.

Text: "Call Jane" with teal background and bright blue stripes

Heather Booth and The Jane Collective: Judaism in Pursuit of Justice

Ma'ayan Stutman-Shaw

Recently, I’ve found hope in the work of a Jewish feminist icon whose pro-choice activism is awe-inspiring: Heather Booth.

Adina Bar-Shalom

Adina Bar-Shalom defines herself as a Haredi woman, not a feminist but a go-getter. She is involved in and has initiated Israeli cultural, public and political activities in conjunction with secular organizations and activists and has participated in many social fora.

Róża Pomeranc-Melcer

Róża Pomeranc Melcer was a social reformer, feminist, and Zionist active in Galicia and later in Eastern Lesser Poland. She was the first and only Jewish Member of Parliament in the Second Polish Republic (1918-1939) and championed the goals of modern Zionist women's politics.

Twenty-First Century Jewish Literature by Women in the US

Twenty-first-century Jewish women’s writing in the United States is wide-ranging in genre and topic. In this body of literature, we can find insightful and nuanced stories of contemporary American life as well as fiction that delves into lost or forgotten Jewish histories. From a female Spinoza to a female golem, a strong feminist ethic is pervasive in these writings.

Jewish Women’s Comics and Graphic Narratives

The history of Jewish women’s comics and graphic novels can be traced back to early and mid-20th-century progenitors. With the underground comics scene of the late 1960s/early 1970s, several Jewish women laid the groundwork for the themes, styles, and communal ties that would be taken up by the post-underground. In the 21st century, the works of Jewish women in comics and graphic novels is booming.

Marti Friedlander

London-born Marti Friedlander migrated to New Zealand in 1958. She became one of the country’s most outstanding and influential photographers in portraiture, photo-journalism, photo-books, and “street” photography. Her photographs still live vigorous public lives in exhibitions, books, and periodicals published after her death.

Colorful Geometric Watercolor Background

Confronting My Assumptions about Orthodox Judaism

Jessie Schwalb

I have come to understand that no sect is a monolith.

Lilith Magazine Fall 1987 (crop)

Jewish Feminist Texts Help Me Get through the Pandemic

Molly Fraser

I will continue to access Jewish feminist texts for wisdom and fortitude when I need them.

Daniella Levine Cava With Supporters in Coral Gables, Florida

Daniella Levine Cava: Miami’s Matriarch

Goldi Lieberperson

Daniella Levine Cava, to whom I affectionately refer as “DLC,” made history during this election cycle.

Photo of Kamala Harris with Barbie Silhouette Background

From Barbie to Kamala: “Little Girls, Dream Big”

Dahlia Plotkin-Oren

Just as Mattel has expanded Barbie dolls to represent broader diversity, we as a society need to continue working towards equality and representation. Kamala Harris's election is a step in that direction.

Graphic of swimmers

My Body Is My Own in Lockdown

Dahlia Soussan

For the first time in my life, my body is entirely my own.

Topics: Feminism
Painted Lines Overlayed with Outline of Ohio

The 2020 Election in Ohio: Continuing the Feminist Struggle for and Beyond Representation

Rose Clubok

Electing a candidate who advocates for reproductive rights for all is just as essential as ensuring women are represented in government.

Judith Collage, 2020 by Judy Goldstein

Facing Holofernes: How to Live Up to a Name Like Judith

Judy Goldstein

In order to live up to a name like Judith, we must face our own Holoferneses head on.

Topics: Feminism, Bible
Illustration of Silhouetted Face Over Butterfly Background

My Jewish Feminist Metamorphosis

Lily Pazner

On the day of my bat mitzvah, I started to confront my internalized antisemitism and sexism.

Photo of Dr. Martens Boots

In Their Footsteps: Stomping in the Boots of My Feminist Foremothers

Goldi Lieberperson

My Doc Martens are so much more than just shoes.

Topics: Feminism, Family

Donate

Help us elevate the voices of Jewish women.

donate now

Get JWA in your inbox