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The Women's Haftarah Commentary: New Insights from Women Rabbis on the 54 Weekly Haftarah Portions, the 5 Megillot & Special Shabbatot
     

The Women's Haftarah Commentary: New Insights from Women Rabbis on the 54 Weekly Haftarah Portions, the 5 Megillot & Special Shabbatot

by Elyse Goldstein (Editor)
 

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Women rabbis are changing the face of Judaism.
Discover how their interpretations of the Prophets, Writings,
and Megillot can enrich your perspective.

The Haftarah is a potent tool for understanding the values, ethics, and moral lessons contained in the Torah readings. In this first-of-its-kind volume, more than eighty women rabbis from the Reform

Overview

Women rabbis are changing the face of Judaism.
Discover how their interpretations of the Prophets, Writings,
and Megillot can enrich your perspective.

The Haftarah is a potent tool for understanding the values, ethics, and moral lessons contained in the Torah readings. In this first-of-its-kind volume, more than eighty women rabbis from the Reform, Conservative, and Reconstructionist movements offer fresh perspectives on the beloved texts that make up the Haftarah—the Prophets and Writings—and the Five Megillot.

Based on readings that are rich in imagery—some poetic, some narrative, some dark and brooding—their commentaries include surprising insights on the stories of Deborah and Yael, David and Goliath, David and Bathsheva, and the witch of Endor, among many others. Themes such as Jerusalem as woman, the story of Jonah and the fish, and other prophetic images are informed and challenged by this groundbreaking work.

A rich resource, a major contribution to modern biblical commentary, and the ideal companion to The Women’s Torah Commentary, The Women’s Haftarah Commentary will inspire all of us to gain deeper meaning from the Hebrew scriptures and a heightened appreciation of Judaism.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Brava: this commentary is brimming with insight and versatility. Read straight through as a whole, it exudes the atmosphere of an intense retreat. Read piecemeal, it acts not only as a reference tool or study guide, but also as a weekly devotional. As in the first volume (The Women's Torah Commentary), there are as many viewpoints as there are parishot. The rabbis come from a diversity of religious affiliations-reform, conservative, reconstructionist-and an equally diverse array of backgrounds: as well as being rabbis, they are also doctors, lawyers, social workers and even a Pulitzer Prize winner. And while they are daughters of rabbis, Holocaust survivors and Russian refugees, they are first and foremost, like all women, daughters of God. Continuing in the age-old tradition of Torah study, this volume draws from centuries of interpretation and adds a woman's touch, but with no axe to grind and no agenda to promote. For example, one need not be a feminist or even a woman to take up the charge offered in reference to Haftarat Pikudei (I Kings 7:51-8:21) by Rabbi Y.L. Bat Joseph that "each generation has the obligation to pick up where Solomon left off and dedicate our homes anew as sanctuaries of Jewish learning, Jewish ritual and Jewish continuity." Male and female readers across a spectrum of religious affiliations can find not only explanation, but hope and renewal within these pages. Those building libraries of Judaica should consider this volume and its predecessor as the contemporary companions to the Hertz Chomash and the recently published Etz Hayim. (Apr.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
In this companion volume to her popular The Women's Torah Commentary, teacher and rabbi Goldstein claims that the haftarah portion, that weekly reading from either the Prophets or the Writings sections of the Hebrew Bible, serves as a potent pedagogical tool for teaching values, ethics, and moral lessons. Goldstein has collected feminist midrash, or commentary, on this material from 85 female rabbis, representing Reform, Conservative, and Reconstructionist perspectives (Orthodoxy's voice is sadly absent). Their commentaries offer diverse and thoughtful reflection on Jewish piety, practice, and history, evidencing concerns for social justice, violence, gender equity, and peace in the context of religious contemplation. In addition, Goldstein offers an index of authors and supplemental readings as well as a reasonably complete glossary of Hebrew terms. That is fairly handy since the author presumes a fair knowledge of Jewish holidays, holy days, and religious idioms. While very accessible and quite enjoyable in its own right, this title will mostly interest libraries with a concentration on popular Jewish works. Sandra Collins, Univ. of Pittsburgh Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781580233712
Publisher:
Turner Publishing Company
Publication date:
09/01/2008
Pages:
560
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.70(h) x 1.50(d)

Meet the Author

Rabbi Elyse Goldstein, one of the leading rabbis of a new generation, is director of Kolel: The Adult Center for Liberal Jewish Learning, a full-time progressive adult Jewish learning center. Goldstein lectures frequently throughout North America. She is also editor of The Women's Torah Commentary: New Insights from Women Rabbis on the 54 Weekly Torah Portions; and The Women's Haftarah Commentary: New Insights from Women Rabbis on the 54 Weekly Haftarah Portions, the 5 Megillot and Special Shabbatot; and author of the award-winning New Jewish Feminism: Probing the Past, Forging the Future and ReVisions: Seeing Torah through a Feminist Lens (all Jewish Lights).

Rabbi Elyse Goldstein is available to speak on the following topics:

  • Women and Judaism
  • Reform Judaism
  • Jewish Parenting
  • General Judaica

Rabbi Sharon Brous is the founding rabbi of IKAR (www.ikar-la.org), a spiritual community dedicated to reanimating Jewish life through soulful religious practice that is rooted in a deep commitment to social justice. She has been noted as one of the leading rabbis in the country in Newsweek/Daily Beast and has been listed among the Forward's fifty most influential American Jews numerous times. She serves on the faculty of the Wexner Heritage Program, the Shalom Hartman Institute and Reboot, and sits on the board of Rabbis for Human Rights.

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