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10 Quotes from the Jewish Founder of Women's History Month

Here are some choice quotes on marginality, what progress looks like, and why women’s history matters, from the Jewish woman who started it all!

One Chosen People, Many Chosen Ways

As a young Jewish woman in contemporary society, I tend to use the word "pluralism" a lot, in a fairly abstract way. I sometimes struggle to explain this concept despite it meaning so much to me, but I have found no example better than Chaim Potok's iconic young adult novel, The Chosen. When I first read The Chosen in tenth grade, it brought on a series of mixed emotions. I was beginning the journey toward understanding my religious and secular identities, and simultaneously saw so much and so little of myself in the protagonists, Reuven and Danny.

Ink of our Own: Women Who Scribe

Torah Scribe and Educator Julie Seltzer takes participants on a behind-the-scenes tour of how Torahs are written, and discusses the Jewish law that has long kept women from being scribes.

Carole Hart

I find it very ironic that Carole Hart, of all people, recognized her Judaism toward the end of her life. I was always trying to drag her to synagogue, and she would have none of it. But it took a very special community, Romemu in New York, to bring her to it (of course after I left NYC!) and one of the very special things that community does that is their own shmirah—their own members guard the body until it is laid to rest. I stopped by to have some time with Carole, and there were two lovely women sitting there.

To Women Writing Bravely

By coming to know our foremothers, we are actually coming to know ourselves and by taking up the weight of the pen and writing our own story, we are freeing all women, then and now. For women’s stories are the keys to our collective liberation. To all the women writing bravely today, I dedicate this piece.

Kathy Green

In 2012, Kathy Green published her memoir, Sailing in Kansas, a work she had begun some twenty years earlier, following a trip to Berlin to visit the city of her father’s youth and, as she writes in the book, “the grand city of [her] imagination.”

More than “Galentine's Day”: Recognizing Female Friendships

Recently, a few of my clergywomen friends dropped by a congregational Shabbat dinner, and we spent the latter half of the evening catching up while people finished their meal. Some members of my community didn’t know how to process the presence of these women at my table, and a few expressed resentment that my attention was divided.

Unscrewing Ourselves

Friedman’s book dives into the national narrative of female sexual submissiveness that’s perpetuated by our patriarchal culture. This narrative comes in the form of abstinence-only sex education, widespread toxic masculinity, and a collective reluctance to support women’s sexuality on a social and political level.

Finding Strength From Our Foremothers

Like many Americans, I owe an enormous debt to my ancestors who traveled here in search of a better life. Their courage created my family’s future. And in particular, I feel a special bond to the long line of women, stretching back generations, whose boldness and sacrifices made my life possible. 

The Lovely Lesléa Newman

Are there any boundaries that Lesléa Newman hasn’t broken? In 1989, she made headlines and history with the controversial Heather Has Two Mommies, a book that brought the LGBTQ experience to the children’s section of the bookstore. This month, her latest poetry collection, Lovely, hits bookstores. I talked with Newman about these radical themes, as well as about the accessibility of poetry, fairytales, and, of course, Jewish hair.


How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Writing." (Viewed on March 19, 2018) <>.


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