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Happening

Resources for Jewish Women

ROSH CHODESH GROUPS

If you live in the Toronto area, you’ll be glad to know there’s a vibrant Rosh Chodesh group for women which meets regularly for the “3 Ss “- Sharing, Study and Song. The group also organizes weekend retreats. To participate, contact:

Rayzel Robinson 14 Elway Ct. #3 Toronto, Canada 416-667-3647 416-783-6351

A New York-based group of Jewish women “dedicated to celebrating the transformation in the cycles of our lives” meets each month to welcome and ritually commemorate the new moon. They are looking for new members to join them.

Rosh Chodesh group Jewish Women’s Resource Center National Council of Jewish Women, New York Section 9 East 69 Street New York, NY 10021 (212) 535-5900, ext. 16

EVENTS

Ms. Liberty and Justice For All…Woman Rising in Resistance, a national network of feminist activities, is sponsoring the Women Take Liberty action at the Statue of Liberty on Sunday, August 3, 1986. The purpose of this event is, naturally, to celebrate the Statue’s 100th anniversary, but also to honor the women of the world. For more information, write:

Mary Lee Sargent or Margaret Flowing Johnson P.O. Box 2096, Station A Champaign, IL 61820

An exhibition on “Changing Tradition: The Position of Women in Judaism” will run at Amsterdam’s Jewish Historical Museum until December 1986. The show focuses on changes in synagogue life and other rituals, illustrated by objects and art designed by Jewish women.

Joods Historisch Museum Waaggebouw Nieuwmarkt 4 1012 CR Amsterdam

DRAMA & FILM

Actress Judith Goldsmith, in a solo presentation, “To Life, To Light: A Celebration of the Human Spirit,” portrays three remarkable Jewish women: Emma Lazarus, Judith, and Hannah Senesh. The production has received excellent reviews. For bookings:

The Penguin Players 17 Burton Avenue Woodmere, N.Y. 11598 (516) 374-6899 (516) 374-6310

Performer Judy Sloan has created a humorous and moving theater piece called Sophie. A composite of stories culled from Ms. Sloan’s interviews with elderly Jews, Sophie has been traveling coast-to-coast for the past several years. The play is part of an ongoing project, “Preserving Jewish Theater Through Oral Histories.” For information on Sophie’s schedule of appearances or how to order a videocassette, contact:

Preserving Jewish Theater Through Oral Histories P.O. Box 1867 New Haven, CT 06508

The Women of Summer is a one-hour documentary which tells the compelling tale of the Bryn Mawr Summer School for Women Workers. During the years 1921-38, Bryn Mawr served 1,700 blue-collar students from the United States and Europe. As shown in their diaries and letters and oral histories, these women were astounded that an elite “girl’s” school would teach factory workers with little education -and they were forever changed by the experience. The Women of Summer, produced by Suzanne Bauman and Rita Heller, and sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities, is available through the distributor:

Filmmakers Library, Inc. 133 E. 58th St. New York, N.Y. 10022 (212) 355-6545

RATE IT X is a 95-minute documentary produced by lesbian feminists that takes a probing look at sexual dynamics in our society. The film is based on a series of sometimes revealing often disturbing, interviews with men who profit from the sexual depiction of women – be it in mainstream advertising or hardcore pornography.
For more information, write: 

Claudette Charbonneau Executive Producer 188 Feminore St. Brooklyn, N.Y. 11225

PUBLICATIONS

If you’re currently working and taking care of a family and at the same time thinking of going to college, here’s a book just for you. The College Board Guide to Going to College While Working: Strategies for Success is designed to help women (and men) in this situation make informed decisions about college, and effectively juggle their time. For extra inspiration, the book includes case histories of adults who achieved their college goals while handling job/home responsibilities. To order, send $9.95 to:

College Board Publications Dept. E15, Box 886 New York, N.Y. 10101

For a calendar and newsletter on Jewish women’s activities, published by a group in the San Francisco Bay Area:

Jewish Women’s Newsletter 2483 Hearst Ave., Suite 186 Berkeley, CA 94709

The National Council for Research on Women has published the funding report, A Declining Federal Commitment to Research About Women, 1980-1984, which compiles post-1980 data available from eight federal agencies. The survey reveals the significant decrease in federal funding for research concerning women. One alarming example: The National Institute of Mental Health’s support for research about women dropped by almost $3 million between 1980 and 1982. For a copy of this report, send $6 to:

The National Council for Research on Women The Sara Delano Roosevelt Memorial House 47-49 E. 65th St. New York, N.Y. 10021

Anti-abortion activists continue to threaten the availability of safe, accessible abortions through systematic-clinic bombings, harassments and disruptive protest activities. Recognizing the need for safeguards, the American Civil Liberties Union has published a guide called “Preserving The Right to Choose: How to Cope With Violence & Disruption at Abortion Clinics.” This pamphlet, particularly geared toward clinic personnel, describes ways to protect abortion services. To order, send $2.00 to:

The American Civil Liberties Union 132 West 43rd St. New York, N.Y. 10036

A triple treat from Biblio Press: First, The Political Life of American Jewish Women by Susan Welch, Ph.D. and Fred Ulrich. This paperback book analyzes how Jewish women voted between 1978-1982, and how these votes compare to those of Jewish men and Protestant and Catholic women. It also highlights, several important Jewish women in 20th century politics. (Biblio also sells posters and postcards of notable Jewish women — Among them Emma Lazarus and Ernestine Rose.)

Also just published, Sex and the Modern Jewish Woman, a unique bibliography/guide where a dozen aspects of sexuality are discussed and analyzed .This report includes published and unpublished works, papers and surveys, and is sure to benefit scholars, students, and persons active in Jewish communal work and women’s organizations. Supplementing the bibliography are overview essays.

And if you’ve ever thought about starting a Jewish women’s library, but didn’t know where to begin, Biblio Press’ guide will answer all your questions. The booklet covers library policies, acquisitions, public relations and more. Send SASE to:

Biblio Press P.O. Box 22 Fresh Meadows, N.Y. 11365 (718) 361-3141

The Women’s League for Conservative Judaism has published a new edition of a Shabbat Manual which describes, in nonsexist terms, the basics of Sabbath observance in the home and synagogue. Stereotype gender roles, such as Mother Cooking and Cleaning for Shabbos, have been eliminated. The manual includes sections on history, synagogue observance and Oneg Shabbat and recommends books for further study. To order, send $3.00 plus $1.50 postage & handling.

Welcome to The World: A Jewish Baby’s Record Book is also just out from the Women’s League. This book, sure to be a keepsake, reflects current Jewish lifestyles, such as the mother participating in religious rituals and the father actively raising the child. Each 40-page, hardcover edition of Welcome to The World comes with a gift-card. Contact the Women’s League for more information.

The Women’s League for Conservative Judaism 48 E. 74th St. New York, N.Y. 10021

A new Hillel prayer book for the High Holy Days, “Ma-aley Tefillol” (On Wings of Awe), seeks to fulfill the needs of nondenominational services and remove “some of the more blatant sexism” common to such prayer books. For example, the Lord is cited not only as God of our Fathers, but also as God of our Mothers. To order, send $9.95 to:

B’nai Brith Hillel Foundation 1640 Rhode Island Ave., NW Washington, D.C. 20036

Artist and scribe Peggy Davis has combined Hebrew and English calligraphy to create one-of-a-kind “Mazel Tov” and “Shalom” greeting cards and Chanukah postcards. Ms. Davis has also produced beautiful lithographs of the Oath of Maimonides, Sabbath Blessings and other Jewish prayers. For a brochure:

Peggy H. Davis Calligraphy Suite 144 3249 Hennepin Ave., S. Minneapolis, Mn. 55408

CALL FOR PAPERS

The Program for the Study of Women & Men in Society at the University of S. California is seeking material on Jewishness and Masculinity. Contributions may be in the form of essays, fiction, poetry, graphics or media reviews. Suggested topics include any aspect of the interactions between Jewish and male identities (religious or secular) in areas such as work, money, family, sexuality, intellectualism etc. Of special interest is the impact of feminism on Jewish men. Selected submissions will be published in the volume “Changing Men: issues in Gender, Sex & Politics” during spring, 1987. These entries and others will subsequently be printed in book form. Send material to:

Harry Brod Program for the Study of Women & men in Society Taper Hall 331M University of S. California Los Angeles, Ca. 90089

MONEY

There’s no such things as a free lunch, but if you’re an industrious Jewish college student or campus group in a funds crunch, you can apply for a grant from the North American Jewish Students Appeal. Grants of up to $500 will be given to support local or regional Jewish projects, such as student publications, conferences, organizations and local action groups. Applications for funding are reviewed throughout the year, and must include: a description of the activity; and list of income and expenses. For more information, contact:

Roberta Shiffman Executive Director North American Jewish Student Appeal 15 E. 26th St. Suite 1350 New York, N.Y. 10010 (212) 679-2293

LIBRARIES

The New York office of Chamah, the International Soviet Jewish Aid Society, has acquired a fine collection of Jewish books in the Russian language and opened a lending library. The books include many published by Chamah, the Aliyah Department of the Jewish Agency, Western Jewish publishers and contributions from recent immigrants. Previously inaccessible to the Russian reader, these volumes will now be available through mail and the main Chamah office. For catalogues and more information, contact:

Chamah 78 Pearl St. New York, N.Y. 10275 (212) 943-9690

An extraordinarily useful collection of material relating to the State of Israel is housed in the Zionist Archives and Library in New York. Here are more than 50,000 books in English, Hebrew, Yiddish, French, German and Russian, plus over 400 periodicals from around the world (including all magazines and newspapers published in Israel). It’s folk music to recordings of political speeches and legislative hearings on the Middle East, and the visual aids department houses over 50,000 photos (dating back to the 1880’s), along with contemporary filmstrips and slides.

The Zionist Archives and Library 515 Park Avenue New York, NY 10022 (212) 752-0600, ext. 255, 256