Lilith's Ark: Teenage Tales of Biblical Women by Deborah Bodin Cohen
Not long after the world was created, Lilith, the first woman, was expelled from the Garden of Eden. She built an ark, a magic box, in which future biblical women could hide their most prized possessions. And so, Lilith’s Ark became a place for women to share their own experiences of adolescence with future generations of girls...
The women of Torah grew up at a time when gender roles were rigidly defined and girls were considered women at an early age. Still, the Torah hints that young biblical women faced challenges similar to those that teenagers encounter today: first loves, burgeoning identities, developing sexualities, and blossoming spirituality. Building on textual sources, Deborah Bodin Cohen has created a collection of midrashim about the teen years of 10 women in Genesis that will resonate with 21st-century readers.
Lilith’s Ark melds text, biblical commentaries, and historic details about the ancient world with the experiences of modern girls and women and the author’s own imagination. A discussion guide for each story enriches the reading experience. This is a book that will speak across time to the anxieties and aspirations of today’s growing girls.
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With Lilith¿s Ark: Teenage Tales of Biblical Women, Rabbi Deborah Bodin Cohen has created voices for the teenage young women of the Torah. Not unlike, The Red Tent, Lilith¿s Ark, brings us back to our ancient past, melding Torah text, Midrashic Commentary and modern psychology. The ten women represented in the book, and connected by Lilith¿s Ark passed from generation to generation, teach lessons of self confidence, strength, passion, following dreams and journeying to the unexpected. Each of the lessons is important to the young women of today who are growing up in a intimate world of tremendous expectation and pressure and a global world where terrorism trumps rationalism. Rabbi Bodin Cohen teaches that our ancestors, Lilith, Eve, Sarah, Hagar, Rebekah, Rachel, Leah, Dina, Tamar and Asenath, encountered the same fears and dreams of every woman. The Torah is not a relic of the past, rather stories of our lives and the lives of our daughters. Lilith¿s Ark is a wonderful resource for teenage Rosh Hodesh Classes, Bar and Bat Mitzvah Divrei Torah writing and sermons. I have used it in teaching parents and children alike and it always creates an atmosphere for interesting, provocative discussion. The stories are written with beauty and the heroine¿s with strength and honesty. It is a unique and powerful work of creative art.