Link Roundup: Summer Reading Digest, Part I

Welcome to this week’s installment of Lilith’s Link Roundup. Each week we post Jewish and feminist highlights from around the web. If there’s anything you want to be sure we know about, email us or leave a message in the comments section below.

The American Medical Association has officially taken a stand against the use of Photoshop and image alteration in advertising, citing its contribution to unrealistic body image expectations and eating disorders. [Ms. Magazine]

When former U.S. First Lady Betty Ford passed away at the age of 93, she spurred some thinking about First Ladies and political wives. Known for being an activist, Ford faced a backlash for her outspokenness. Unfortunately, to this day First Ladies and wives of presidential candidates have been forced to keep mum on controversial issues, in fear of being a liability to their husbands. [XX Factor] & [The Loop 21]

Women in Israel have begun to fight back against gender segregation on buses. Six months ago, the High Court ruled against gender segregation on public transportation; however, male passengers and drivers have continued to force female passengers to move to the back of the bus. [Huffington Post] & [Jerusalem Post]

A new study from Northwestern University revealed that women are still not viewed as natural leaders. The results concluded that “women are viewed as less qualified or natural in most leadership roles, the research shows, and secondly, when women adopt culturally masculine behaviors often required by these roles, they may be viewed as inappropriate or presumptuous.” [EurekAlert!]

Actress Geena Davis, along with US Senator Kay Hagan and US Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin, has introduced a bill to improve the image of women and girls in the media, known as The Healthy Media for Youth Act. [The Wrap]

Haaretz featured a profile on Prof. Alice Shalvi, the mother of Israeli feminism. In an interview, Shalvi stated, “as long as the army has such a central influence on our life and the dominant religion is Orthodoxy, there won’t be equality between the sexes.” [Haaretz]

Richard Dawkins, the well-known evolutionary biologist, came under scrutiny after inferring that western feminist issues are trivial compared to those of Muslim women. Dawkins comments came in response to a feminist blogger Rebecca Watson’s recent account of being propositioned in a hotel elevator. [The Atlantic Wire]

Professor Michael Chernick explained how rabbinic Judaism’s “othering” of women has impacted contemporary Judaism. [The Jewish Week]

A recent study revealed that men are the only ones benefiting from the U.S. economic recovery. The Pew Research Center study found that, between June 2009 and May of 2011, men gained 768,000 jobs and lowered their unemployment rate by 1.1%, while women lost 218,000 and increased their unemployment rate by 0.2%. [Pew Research Center]

Women were turned away from the Jerusalem International Convention Center when they showed up for an economic conference, which was organized by Hamodia, an ultra-Orthodox newspaper. [Ynet]

Thursday, July 7th, marked the thirtieth anniversary of Sandra Day O’Connor’s U.S. Supreme Court nomination. [Huffington Post]

Journalist Irin Carmon summarized the UN Women’s new report on the progress of women around the world. She describes the less than favorable results by stating, “despite the optimism implied by ‘progress,’ spoiler alert — it’s all pretty terrible.” [Jezebel]

The Israel Air Force revealed that despite its efforts to recruit more female pilots, most women end up dropping out of the courses as a result of peer pressure from male counterparts and the unlikeliness of being assigned to a combat position. [Haaretz]

The US State Department’s latest report on human trafficking placed Israel in the category of “countries whose governments do not fully comply with the minimum standards but are making significant efforts to bring themselves into compliance with those standards.” [Ynet]

The Knesset Law Committee passed two bills that would protect agunot, women whose husbands refuse to grant them a Jewish divorce, known as a get. The rabbinical court recently began to enforce existing policies; a recalcitrant husband was sent back to jail, where he will remain there until he agrees to give his wife a get. [Jerusalem Post]

Second Lieutenant Noy made history in Israel by becoming the first woman to command a sniper platoon. [Ynet]

Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics revealed that birth rates have declined for Haredi and Muslim women since 2005. [The Forward]