Television

Content type
Collection
Samantha Pickette Headshot and Book Cover

Q & A with Samantha Pickette, Author of "Peak TV's Unapologetic Jewish Woman"

Sarah Jae Leiber

JWA talks to Samantha Pickette about her new book and about how TV is establishing a new version of the Jewish woman. 

Jewish Women and Comedy

This article looks at the place of American Jewish women in comedy. It chronicles the reasons comedy has been a difficult field for women and looks at the careers of several remarkable women who found success in different eras and forms of comedy.

Fleishman is in Trouble promo image

"Fleishman is in Trouble" Asks Universal Questions

Sarah Jae Leiber

This very Jewish TV adaptation of the bestselling novel crackles with sharply drawn characters and brilliant performances. 

Birth of actress Roxy Sternberg

April 20, 1989

British actress Roxy Sternberg is deeply connected to her Jewish roots. She began working as an actress in her youth, gaining traction and going on to star in major roles on screen. Her love for her Jewish community flourished at West London Synagogue, where she continues to teach when she is not filming for television, but she has faced some discrimination as a Jew of Color.  

Sandra Bernhard

Sandra Bernhard is an American actor, stand-up comedian, singer, memoirist, and talk show host. She has been a high-profile LGBTQ+ presence over a career that has spanned five decades. Bernhard’s work amalgamates the three perspectives that she has said define her: “the feminist, the social commentator, the Jewess.”

Still from the Bachelorette - woman and man talking

Why Haven't We Had an Openly Jewish Bachelorette?

Catherine Horowitz

Although The Bachelor/ette franchise features extensive discussions of Christianity, even the rare Jewish contestants never talk about Judaism.

Shira Haas becomes the first Israeli nominated for an Emmy Award for her lead role in “Unorthodox”

July 28, 2020

Israeli actress Shira Haas rose to international fame for her role as Esty in Unorthodox, a Netflix miniseries. On July 28, 2020, she became the first Israeli to be nominated for an Emmy Award for this role.

Comic strip by Alison Bechdel entitled "The Rule" from her series Dykes To Watch Out For

It’s Time to Ditch the Bechdel Test–Or at Least Take It Less Seriously

Catherine Horowitz

We should not need a list of boxes to check off to tell us whether a movie is feminist.

Megan Fox holding a flame to her tongue with her phone held up to her ear

"Jennifer's Body": A Metacommentary on Exploitation in the Film Industry

Sofia Isaias-Day

The film Jennifer's Body addresses themes of assault and exploitation without being obvious about it—which may have been a necessary tactic.

Topics: Feminism, Television
Movie Still from "Ghost World", 2001: Image of Scarlett Johansson and Thora Birch

"Ghost World": Flawed Portrayals of Flawed Jewish Women

Lucy Waldorf

Ghost World is satirical, but is that fact enough to excuse the writing of the Jewish female characters?

Marlee Matlin

Marlee Matlin’s Oscar-winning film debut in 1986’s Children of a Lesser God made history on multiple fronts. At 21, not only was Matlin the youngest-ever Best Actress winner, she was also the first Deaf actress to be recognized by the Academy. Her subsequent career in film and television, as an author, and as an activist for the Deaf community, has paved the way for inclusive, nuanced storytelling that showcases Deaf culture to hearing audiences.

Woman stands on in subway car with her head peeking through open doors

"Russian Doll" Season 2: Messy, but Beautiful

Emma Breitman

Despite a sloppy start, the show’s second season ultimately hooked me with its exploration of Jewish themes.

Carrie Brownstein’s Sleater-Kinney releases acclaimed album, "Call the Doctor"

March 25, 1996

On March 25, 1996, the feminist indie-punk band Sleater-Kinney, featuring Jewish musician, actor, and writer Carrie Brownstein, released its second album, Call the Doctor. The album, which Rolling Stone later listed as number 49 in the top 100 albums of the 1990s, solidified Sleater-Kinney as an essential voice in punk rock’s riot grrrl movement.

Maya Rudolph Joins the Cast of "Saturday Night Live"

May 6, 2000

On May 6, 2000, Jewish comedian, actor, and writer Maya Rudolph appeared for the first time on Saturday Night Live, where she remained as a cast member until 2007. When she joined SNL in the show’s twenty-fifth season, she became the fourth Black female cast member in the show’s history.

Paula Abdul Releases First No. 1 Hit Single “Straight Up”

November 22, 1988

On November 22, 1988, Jewish singer, performer, choreographer, and television personality Paula Abdul released her single “Straight Up” from her debut album, Forever Your Girl. The song became Abdul’s first No. 1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in February 1989.

Rachel Brosnahan accept flowers from a man.

I’m Tired of Trying to Root for Midge Maisel

Sarah Jae Leiber

Over and over, Midge hurts people who trusted her, and the show lets her get away with it.

Topics: Television, Comedy
Still from bat mitzvah scene of And Just Like That...Includes Charlotte, her husband, children, and officiating rabbi

How 'And Just Like That…' Reflects Bat Mitzvah History

Judith Rosenbaum

In its season finale, And Just Like That...captures how the bat mitzvah has evolved over the last century. 

Asude Kalebek as Rasel in Kulup

Missed Kulüp When It Came Out? You Can Now Binge the Whole Delicious Series.

Mirushe "Mira" Zylali

The show depicts Sephardic women in all their messy complexity. But when it comes to Turkey’s oppressed minorities, it could dig deeper.

Libby Stein-Torres from The Ghost and Molly McGee

Libby Stein-Torres joins a growing pantheon of Jewish female cartoon characters

Ariel Finkle

The Ghost and Molly McGee is about to air a Hanukkah episode, and I’m kvelling.

Sarah Paulson as Linda Tripp and Annaleigh Ashford as Paula Jones

FX’s Impeachment: A Study in Caricature and Misogyny

Sarah Jae Leiber

By putting some of the show’s female stars in prosthetics, FX’s Impeachment is guilty of the same misogynistic behavior for which it faults the media.

Molly Yeh and Marissa Wojcik

How a Celebrity Chef Helped Me Connect with My Mixed Heritage

Marissa Wojcik

Celebrity chef Molly Yeh inspired me to share my Jewish fusion recipes with the world.

"Survivor" Collage by Judy Goldstein

"Outwit, Outplay, Outlast": Where are the Jewish Women on "Survivor"?

Judy Goldstein

Out of 20 Jewish Survivor contestants, only six have been women.

Topics: Television

Joan Nathan

Award-winning journalist and cookbook author Joan Nathan is a transformative figure in documenting and exploring the evolving Jewish experience both in America and around the globe through the powerful lens of food. A long-standing contributing writer to The New York Times and Tablet Magazine, Nathan is the author of eleven books, as well as hundreds of articles, podcasts, interviews, and public presentations about Jewish, global, and American foodways. 

Sara Sugarman

Sara Sugarman is a Welsh-born movie director and actor, who made her mark as a small-screen performer before stepping behind the camera to direct international award-winning movies with a Welsh twist.

Mayim Bialik

Mayim Bialik is most famous for starring as the titular character in the early 1990s series Blossom and, in the 2010s, on Big Bang Theory as Amy Farrah-Fowler. She is also known for being one of the few observant Jewish actors in Hollywood and for holding a PhD in Neuroscience from UCLA.

Donate

Help us elevate the voices of Jewish women.

donate now

Get JWA in your inbox