Winter 2024

Our World Since October

Writing our grief. Exploring pop culture. Dreaming of peace.

In This Issue

Lilith Feature

Three Writers on the End of Life

Grieving a sister, a husband, a mother.

Lilith Feature

The Culture Report

Helene Meyers, Chanel Dubofsky, Josh Lambert

Three writers on the films, video games and books that move them.

Lilith Feature

Bat Mitzvah Stories

Rebellion and reflection.

Lilith Feature

Our World After October

Susan Weidman Schneider

Shaken by an awful kaleidoscope of reactions, Israeli, American and some Palestinian women report on the October attacks and the war that has followed.

More Articles

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“It’s a Man’s War”


I spent Shabbat afternoon with three young Israeli mothers all of whom have husbands currently serving in the war in Gaza. Five babies aged 15 days to 2.5 years. Another... Read more »

“Our Sovereignty Has Been Violated”


Our country has changed unrecognizably overnight.

“Dichotomy Is a Response to Trauma”


I am listening to the voices we’ve been hearing around us since October 7, and the feeling is one of dichotomy,” Gilligan says. “It’s us or them, to be or... Read more »

“Don’t Look Away from the Sexual Brutality of October 7”


I grieve for the Gazans, 70% of them women and children, who’ve been killed in this tragic incarnation of a century-old conflict. I despise Hamas for starting it. I’m sad... Read more »

“Sow in Tears”


Why do we cry? There is something evolutionary and primal in us that understands tears as a way of communicating and bonding. And while some animals can tear up from... Read more »

Jews Are Shaking


The feeling of deep dread that these atrocities stirred in Jews was horribly familiar.

An office confessional: getting real about childhood dolls.


American Girl: unique, groundbreaking and controversial.

Some Palestinian Women’s Words


"If we die when our house is bombed, we want to have our dignity and modesty."

What We Invite to Our Bat Mitzvahs


The other day I drank 2 cups of coffee in the morning, and then another around 4 PM; I’m almost 45, so it came as no surprise that I was... Read more »

A Sea of Pink Kippot


“Why can’t I have pink?” my daughter insisted, while I cringed in dismay. This was the last thing I would have expected, and only reinforced my certainty that my daughter... Read more »

Poem: Stone for a Pillow


This powerful and moving poem is an urgent prayer, not a confession of sins but a yearning for the hopeless self to be changed from within.

Shedding Our Shame


Her example cut through a half-century during which I had been socialized to accept men’s behavior, however degrading or inappropriate, because that’s what good girls did.

Fiction: Men Make Plans


A lesson from my grandmother years before came to haunt me—der mensch tracht un Gott lacht; men make plans, God laughs.

Poem: I Peed in the Shower at the Mikveh


Then I justified it by thinking of the women who peed; upheld this mitzvah for hundreds of years

Emails from Beyond


Hey mom, what the fuck was up with pretending like you weren’t dying when you manifestly were?

The Treasure My Mother Couldn’t Bestow


My mother always knew the name of the doctor’s receptionist, and how many children she had—and would ask about them.

Is Writing Spiritual? Two Books Say Yes.


“Writing is holy,” author Patricia Lockwood once said, and there couldn’t be a more appropriate assertion with which to begin an article about two new books that take different, but... Read more »

This Jewish Video Game is a Masterpiece


Why would Gran insist on all this Jewish specificity, when so many video games don’t?

Chicago’s Shofar-Blowing “Rabbi on the Block”


During one sequence in Brad Rothschild’s new documentary Rabbi on the Block, Tamar Manasseh offers a tutorial in shofar-blowing as she readies her community, Chicago Mothers/Men Against Sense- less Killing (known... Read more »

Ways of Looking at Your Dying Mother


Try to memorize everything about your mother’s face. Her eyes are still a sharp blue. Her skin at her age is remarkably smooth.

I’m 10, and I’ve Gone Through More Than Most Adults


When I watch “dramatic” TV shows, they don’t seem like much compared to my life. When I was six my sister Orli got diagnosed with liver cancer, so we went... Read more »

So This Is Grief


Adam hated being handled by strangers, and I wanted to minister to him alone, with only our children helping. And so we moved mountains to bring him home. I will... Read more »

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