Women and Judaism: New Insights and Scholarship

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Overview

Although women constitute half of the Jewish population and have always played essential roles in ensuring Jewish continuity and the preservation of Jewish beliefs and values, only recently have their contributions and achievements received sustained scholarly attention. Scholars have begun to investigate Jewish women’s domestic, economic, intellectual, spiritual, and creative roles in Jewish life from biblical times to the present. Yet little of this important work has filtered down beyond specialists in their respective academic fields. Women and Judaism brings the broad new insights they have uncovered to the world.

Women and Judaism communicates this research to a wider public of students and educated readers outside of the academy by presenting accessible and engaging chapters written by key senior scholars that introduce the reader to different aspects of women and Judaism. The contributors discuss feminist approaches to Jewish law and Torah study, the spirituality of Eastern European Jewish women, Jewish women in American literature, and many other issues.

Contributors: Nehama Aschkenasy, Judith R. Baskin, Sylvia Barack Fishman, Harriet Pass Freidenreich, Esther Fuchs, Judith Hauptman, Sara R. Horowitz, Renée Levine, Pamela S. Nadell, and Dvora Weisberg.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814732199
  • Publisher: New York University Press
  • Publication date: 11/1/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Frederick E. Greenspahn is Gimelstob Eminent Scholar in Judaic Studies, Florida Atlantic University. He is the editor of The Hebrew Bible: New Insights and Scholarship, Essential Papers on Israel and the Ancient Near East, as well as author/editor of numerous other titles including When Brothers Dwell Together: The Preeminence of Younger Siblings in the Hebrew Bible and An Introduction to Aramaic.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Introduction: Four Approaches to Women and the Jewish Experience Judith R. Baskin 1

Part 1 Classical Tradition

1 Jewish Feminist Approaches to the Bible Esther Fuchs 25

2 Women and Torah Study in Aggadah Dvora E. Weisberg 41

3 Women and Jewish Law Judith Hauptman 64

Part II History

4 Women in Medieval Jewish Societies Renée Levine Melammed 91

5 The Mystical Spirituality of Eastern European Jewish Women Chava Weissler 116

6 How Central European Jewish Women Confronted Modernity Harriet Pass Freidenreich 131

Part III Contemporary Life

7 Women and American Judaism Pamela S. Nadell 155

8 Women's Transformations of Contemporary Jewish Life Sylvia Barack Fishman 182

Part IV Literature

9 Women in Jewish American Literature Sara R. Horowitz 199

10 Text, Nation, and Gender in Israeli Women's Fiction Nehama Aschkenasy 221

Epilogue: Women and Judaism: From Invisibility to Integration Frederick E. Greenspahn 245

Contributors 255

Index 259

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