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Prayer

Women's Tefillah Movement

Orthodox women’s [jwa_encyclopedia_glossary:419]tefillah[/jwa_encyclopedia_glossary] (prayer) groups consist of women who wish to maximize women’s participation in communal prayer while remaining within the [jwa_encyclopedia_glossary:317]halakhic[/jwa_encyclopedia_glossary] parameters of the Orthodox community, and so meet regularly to conduct prayer services for women only.

Women of the Wall

Women of the Wall (WOW), a group of women who have asserted women’s right to pray at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, have struggled against personal violence and public opprobrium since 1988.

Seder Mitzvot Nashim

The title Seder Mitzvot Nashim (the order of women’s precepts) refers to the genre of literature in Ashkenazic and Italian communities, written in the vernacular. Such compositions explained the specifics of how women should observe the commandments that were particularly associated with them.

Rashi

Rashi (Rabbi Solomon ben Isaac, 1040–1105) is considered the greatest Jewish scholar of medieval times in Ashkenaz (Germany, France and England). It is doubtful whether we can find another Jewish scholar active at the time who was willing to make changes for the benefit of women’s rights even where halakhic and aggadic sources were not kindly disposed towards them. True, he sometimes accepted prejudicial opinions about women in the sources, but his relatively tolerant and considerate attitude towards women is worthy of note.

Poland: Early Modern (1500-1795)

With the gender role definition for Jewish women in Poland being subtly and haltingly stretched and broadened as this period progressed, it does seem appropriate to call it the early modern period.

Poetry in the United States

The contributions of Jewish women poets to American literary history and political activism, as well as to the enrichment of Jewish culture and practice, are astounding.

Rabbi Ben-Zion Meir Hai Ouziel

R. Ben-Zion Hai Ouziel wrote extensively on religious, communal and national subjects, as well as Jewish philosophy, his articles appearing in several newspapers and journals. His election as the Sephardic Chief Rabbi (the Rishon le-Zion) carried a concurrent appointment to the Va’ad Le’ummi (National Council of Jews of Palestine) and he participated in the sessions in which the Jewish Agency was founded.

Fanny Neuda

In contrast to the earlier works, which were mainly composed by men, Fanny Neuda’s Stunden der Andacht (Hours of Devotion) was probably the first prayer book for Jewish women in the nineteenth century written by a woman.

Mother of Micah: Bible

A woman living in the hill country of Ephraim in the period of the judges discovers that eleven hundred pieces of silver have been stolen from her. She then utters a curse (Hebrew alah) in the hearing of her son Micah, who is the thief.

Matriarchs: A Liturgical and Theological Category

Among egalitarian religious congregations throughout the world, the most popular addition to the traditional liturgy is the mention of the Matriarchs in birkat avot (the blessing of the ancestors), the opening blessing of the Amidah.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Prayer." (Viewed on December 14, 2018) <https://jwa.org/topics/prayer>.

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