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Resource List for Jewish Women’s Education

Whether you’re looking for a bet-midrash (house of study) led by reknown feminist scholars, a degree granting academic program or a mystical retreat, the opportunities abound for international women’s .study. Don’t just make resolutions this year, go out and learn!

NATIONAL

Aleph: Alliance for Jewish Renewal
7318 Germcmtown Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19119.(215)242-4074.

A resource center that connects people with hip “renewal” communities and classes nationwide.

Hadassah
Director of Education, Carole Diament, Ph.D. 50 West 58th St.. New York, NY 10019. (212) 355-7900.

This women’s Zionist organization offers a large range of classes to members across the country on Talmud, Hebrew, music, Judaism, ecology and Jewish women writers. Contact the national office or your local chapter to learn more.

CALIFORNIA
Chochmat Halev
Avram Davis, 1743 Oregon, Berkeley, CA 94703. (510) 644-2956.

A co-ed, egalitarian yeshiva with a bet midrash (house of study) where Jews can learn traditional texts and other topics including Jewish women’s spirituality.

Women’s Institute for Continuing Jewish Education:
4126 Executive Drive, La Jolla, CA 92037. (619) 442-2666.

Offers classes on Jewish women’s roles in Talmud, Torah, art, history, sociology, archeology and other disciplines. Men and women of all denominations and backgrounds are invited to attend, although most students are female.

COLORADO
Jewish Women’s Resource Center
Barbara Lehman. (303)758-8232. Fax(303)758-8232.

A non-denominational center in Denver that offers classes year round and holds a feminist seder. Holiday retreats for women are also available.

NEW YORK
Drisha Institute for Jewish Education
Devra Lehman or David Silber, 131 West 86th St., New York, NY 10024. (212)595-0307.

Enables women who can read and understand basic Hebrew texts to pursue full-time or part-time study that is parallel to the serious study adult men can do in yeshiva. Drisha also offers community lectures for both men and women.

Elat Chayyim: the Woodstock Center for Healing and Renewal
Jeff Roth or Joanna Katz, P.O. Box 127, Woodstock, NY 12498. (800) 398-2630.

A summer and High Holy Day retreat center dedicated to making Judaism “non-sexist” and “non-hierarchical.” Offers small workshops on topics including Jewish feminist theology. Participants do not need any skills, although Hebrew may be helpful for some classes.

Jewish Renaissance Center
Esther Gotlieb, 120 Riverside Drive, New York, NY 10024. (212) 580-9666.

Offers classes for women on Jewish history, law and texts during intensive week-long and summer programs, and during year-long morning, lunch time and evening programs. Tries to bring secular Jews closer to Judaism without making people “feel guilty.”

Ma’yan: the Jewish Women’s Project
Eve Landau, 180 West 80th St., New York, NY 10024. (212) 580-0099.

A program of The JCC on the Upper West Side of Manhattan that offers Rosh Chodesh celebrations and study sessions led by Jewish feminist scholars.

Sisterhood of the Queens Jewish Center
66-05 108th St., Forest Hills, NY 11375. (718) 459-8432.

Although many sisterhoods offer classes, the Queens Jewish Center is known for Smadar Rosensweig’s popular class about female personalities in the Tanach.

The Workmen’s Circle
The Culture and Education Department., 45 East 33rd St., New York, NY 10016. (212) 889-6800 or (800) 531-1553 (in the summer).

A summer retreat program in Hopewell, NY, that offers seminars in Yiddish language, literature and music. Children’s programs available.

VIVO
Dr. Allen Nadler, 1048 5th Ave., New York, NY 10028. (212) 535-6700

Co-sponsors a joint Yiddish Language program with Columbia University as well as small seminars on Eastern European Jewish history and culture. Its faculty includes several female scholars including Deborah Dash-Moore and Jenna Weissman-Joselit. Spring and Fall classes are available in addition to a Yiddish summer program.

MASSACHUSETTS,
National Yiddish Book Center

Pearl-Anne Margalit, 48 Woodbridge St., South Hadley, MA 01075. (413) 535- 1303.

Offers a week long summer retreat and a weekend conference in the winter that focuses on Yiddish culture and language for students of all levels who are members of the book center. Past topics include women in Yiddish literature.

PENNSULYANIA
Jewish Renewal Life Center
Rabbi Julie Greenberg, Room B202, 6445 Greene St.. Philadelphia, PA 19119. (215) 843-4345. Fax (215) 247-9703

A residential year of training in Jewish spirituality and community building. Classes include: “Feminist Perspective on Judaism” and “Sources of Authority in Judaism: Adding Women’s Voices to the Talmud.”

INTERNATIONAL

ISRAEL
Givat Haviva Education Foundation
Hal Cohen, Executive Director, 224 West 35th St. , Suite 403, New York, NY WOOL (212) 868-0353.

A Jewish-Arab center for peace that tailors lectures for groups travelling in Israel. Possible subjects include Jewish feminism, Arab-Jewish relations and the status of Arab and Jewish women.

Jewish Theological Seminary
Office of the Registrar, Ginger Greenspan, 3080 Broadway, New York, NY 10027. (212) 678-8007

A graduate program in Israel that grants an MA in Judaic Studies with a Concentration in Women’s and Gender Studies. Courses include “Sexuality and the Family in the Ancient Near East” and the “Female Voice in Jewish Literature, Prayer, Letters and Autobiographies.”

MaTaN Women’s Institute of Torah Study
c/o Iris Ben-Yishai, 75 Seckle Pear Rd., Levittown, PA 19056. (215) 949-3952. Fax (215) 943-1916.

Long and short term programs for women who want to take a traditional yet probing approach to both classical and modern texts. Faculty includes Malke Bina, Aviva Gottlieb-Zornberg and Beverly Gribetz. Fellowships are available.

Neve Yirushalayim College
Lise Panish, Sara Norflus, 25 Broadway, Suite 403, New York, NY 10004. (212) 422-1110

An Orthodox women’s yeshiva offering full time Jewish studies at six to seven different levels. Students learn chumash, halacha, history, Hebrew and philosophy. The six week introductory course is offered throughout the year.

Ohr Rivka, division for women of Ohr Torah Institutions
Yishai Periin, 155 E 55th St.. Suite 303, New York, NY 10022. (212) 935-8672.

An umbrella organization that oversees a number of programs in Israel including:

Midreshet Lindenbaum: An intensive Jewish studies program for women who have basic to extensive Hebrew and Jewish backgrounds. Offers traditional courses in Tanach, Mishna, Women in Jewish Law and Women in Tanach. Halachic observance is assumed.

Bruria Scholars Program: Offers fellowships for the study of traditional Jewish texts to female students who have considerable textual background.

Pardes Institute
Susan Gotlieb, PO box 926 , Avon, CT 06001. (203) 675-1431.

A co-ed, politically and religiously unaffiliated yeshiva that teaches people from diverse religious backgrounds. Students analyze and challenge texts in an atmosphere where respect for inquiry is combined with spiritual vitality. One year and summer programs available.

WUJS: Kol Ishah Summer Seminar for the Advancement of Jewish Women’s Leadership
3535 Bathurst St., Toronto, Ontario M67 207. (416)783-1165, Fax (416) 783- 1166.

A month-long seminar in Israel that trains university women from all over the world to become Jewish leaders.

Yakar Women’s Studies
Rechov Halamed Hey 10, Jerusalem. (02) 612310 or 617460

New-Age influenced Orthodox women’s Bet Midrash that offers chavruta (small group) study with two to three women under the guidance of outstanding women scholars.

CANADA
Centre for Women’s Studies in Education
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, Frieda Forman, 252 Bloor St. West, Toronto, Ontario M5S1V6. (416) 923-6641 ext. 2244.

Conducts a bi-annual conference that examines Jewish women’s history, from biblical characters to contemporary issues including Jewish lesbians and women on kibbutzim. The conference, entitled “Jewish Women’s Voices Past and Present,” is scheduled for March 24-26, 1995.

ENGLAND
Oxford Centre for Post-Graduate Hebrew Studies
Yamton Manor, Yamton, Oxford 0X51PY (0865) 842195 (direct) or (0865) 377946. Fax AX (0865) 375079.

Offers a one-year masters program for college graduates with degrees in the humanities. The Centre takes an interdisciplinary approach to Jewish history, culture and relations with other traditions. In addition, it offers intensive summer programs in Yiddish.