Connections with Mom via the shopping channel.
Connections with Mom via the shopping channel.
Our Bodies… in Hebrew & Arabic Women and Their Bodies set out in 2005 to develop Our Bodies, Ourselves in Hebrew (Nashim Le’Gufan) and Arabic (Al Mara wa Kayanaha). WTB runs workshops for girls and women and for health care professionals, and advocates with policymakers on issues affecting women’s health in Israel. More than 350... Read more »
Where We Find Ourselves: Jewish Women around the World Write about Home edited by Miriam Ben-Yoseph and Deborah Nodler Rosen (SUNY Press, $19.95) is a powerful collection of stories, poems, and essays. All of the various contributors grapple with the definition: “Home is a place where you can sleep all night without having to worry... Read more »
As a poet and a mother to a young child, I’m always looking to read the works of other “poet-moms.” So I was thrilled to delve into Erika Meitner’s second book, Ideal Cities (Harper Perennial, $13.99), a National Poetry Series winner. The book was written when Meitner’s son was an infant, and the poems have... Read more »
How do you learn to live with the ongoing medical, emotional and logistical demands of caring for a chronically ill child? Naomi Levy, author of Hope Will Find You: My Search for the Wisdom to Stop Waiting and Start Living (Harmony Books, $23), is a well-known Los Angeles-based rabbi whose happy family life received a... Read more »
What do we talk about when we talk about things? Three volumes published this year offer compelling evidence that the study of objects is undergoing something of a renaissance within Jewish studies. Recent scholarship has sought to replace the centrality of text and language with the material world of things and landscapes. For Jewish studies,... Read more »
How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less by Sarah Glidden (Vertigo, $24.99) is a travel memoir by a skeptical cartoonist. The author explains her project as follows: “Before I came here, I read as many firsthand accounts of the Birthright experience as I could online. Many of the alumni wrote that from the... Read more »
As I begin this review, my younger sister is exactly three weeks from the due date for her second child, who will be the younger sister of my two-year-old niece. A few weeks ago she overcame her superstitions sufficiently to start preparing her daughter for the new arrival. “What happens when the baby comes to... Read more »
As I read two extraordinary new memoirs, At Home with Andre and Simone Weil, by Sylvie Weil, translated by Benjamin Ivry (Northwestern University Press, $24.95) and An Exclusive Love, by Johanna Adorjan, translated by Anthea Bell (W. W. Norton & Company, $24.95), I kept thinking of the paper written years ago by the psychoanalyst Selma... Read more »
The Cosmopolitans (Livingston Press, $17.95), a debut novel from Nadia Kalman, is an engaging look at the Russian immigrant experience in America through a complex family story — something of an anti-epic that chronicles how the Molochniks acculturate into the 21st century. The novel mirrors the structure of Sholem Aleichem’s Tevye stories , the gradual... Read more »
The legions of writers who appropriate in any way any part of the Anne Frank story (full disclosure: I am one of them) face a dilemma. As Anne retreats into history, we must find new ways to keep her memory alive. But often a cry of outrage goes up: Don’t tamper with the Anne Frank... Read more »
One of the critical pieces of evidence Peggy Orenstein unearths in her new book, Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture (Harper Collins; $25.99), is that girls need role models. They need “larger than life heroes, especially in the all-important realm of fantasy, where they spend so much... Read more »
A Jew by choice chooses one ritual in particular: the mezuzah.
Taking up the tradition of truth-telling in Yiddish music, we hear the dark stories in those familiar tunes.
Mick Jagger famously sang, “you can’t always get what you want,” and then consoled us by adding that, sometimes, “you get what you need.” But in a long-distant summer of my life, I found, with some surprise, that I was able to do both. It was 1973, and I was 16. My parent’s 24-year marriage... Read more »
In the early years of second-wave feminism, some activists thumbed their noses at Vogue, Seventh Avenue, and their mother’s closets. Liberated women wore their disdain for fashion as a badge of honor on their slogan T-shirts. No more dressing to please men. Or to arouse other women’s envy. No more color-coordinated outfits. According to these... Read more »
This year we’re celebrating the 20th anniversary of the publication of Naomi Wolf ’s The Beauty Myth. I can’t pinpoint the exact moment I read it, but it had to be close to it’s publication in 1991. My mom had purchased it in hardcover, so I was, let’s say, 16 when I read it. If... Read more »
Fashion is a completely delightful obsession for my cohort of 20-something women. It’s an in-your-face reclamation of the joy of clothes, putting the femme in feminism, so to speak. We do our research online, scrolling through endless pages of red carpets and runways — it’s easy and satisfying to be an armchair expert. Part of... Read more »
Making a shiddukh between Jewish meaning and eco-politics. Why? And how to?
Kathryn Harrison talks with Yona Zeldis McDonough about The Kiss.
When my grandparents came to Palestine from Berlin in 1933, they settled in the new white city of Tel Aviv. Many German refugees came in the 30s, bringing to this infant metropolis their considerable intellectual and emotional investments in enterprise, the arts, and cutting-edge architecture. Mendelsohn, Kaufmann, and other protégés of Gropius, successfully transplanted the vision... Read more »
In Brooklyn there is a rabbi who will study with you.His office is lined with books, floor to ceiling andWall to wall, hieroglyphics on the spines, a scrim ofDust motes shimmering in the gloom. “Cut to the chase,” you say. “Give me the law.”So he gives you the law. Six-hundred and thirteenOf them, and a... Read more »
The death of Debbie Friedman on January 9, at the age of 59, came as a shock to her legions of fans; few knew that the singer-songwriter who modernized Jewish liturgical music had long suffered from a mysterious neurological disease. Her “Mi Sheberach,” based on the traditional prayer for healing, came out of her personal... Read more »
A recent gathering in New Jersey honored marriages born out of loss. Holocaust survivor Gina Lanceter was staying in an abandoned synagogue in Poland when she met her husband; she was 16. They married less than three weeks later in Lublin, with 10 people as witnesses as there was no rabbi. “A date was not... Read more »
My grandmother, in an inverse situation from many women today who have no choice but to work, had little choice but to stay at home and raise her children. Her daughters, flush with the feminist revolution, became doctors, marched pretty and proud into boys-club medical schools, and went on to have thriving careers, and children.... Read more »
“Domestic arts” was the pejorative term used for centuries. It relegated to the home the creativity of endless generations of women artists excluded from professional and academic training. In 1972, Judy Chicago and Miriam Schapiro founded Womanhouse, a program at the California Institute of the Arts to nurture women and challenge the stereotypes that had... Read more »
Risa Simon, Lt. Commander in the U.S. Navy, fluent in Hebrew and Arabic, is an intelligence officer now serving in Kabul, Afghanistan. She’s also, as it happens, a Lilith subscriber. On one of her rare leaves in the States, just before her 39th birthday last month, she visited the Lilith office with her husband. (They... Read more »
Anita, an Argentinean film directed by Marcos Carnevale, begins with an everyday ritual that tells us about the loving, caring relationship between Dora (Norma Aleandro) and Anita (Alejandra Manzo), her daughter born with Down Syndrome. The Feldmans live above their stationery store in the historically Jewish Once district of Buenos Aires. Anita’s life is bound... Read more »
In 2004, the Conservative movement’s Rabbinical Assembly released a study, “Gender Variation in the Careers of Conservative Rabbis: A Survey of Rabbis Ordained Since 1985.” RA Executive VP Rabbi Julie Schonfeld told Lilith magazine, “I have called upon other rabbinic organizations to follow the RA’s lead and produce a study tracking women’s career advancement, as... Read more »
I did an about face this month. I decided to stop believing in PMS. PMS and Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder weren’t actually included in the DSM until some time in the 1970s (and against protestations of many psychiatrists). Before that, we have the Victorians, Freud et al, to thank for notions of female hysteria and humors.... Read more »
In January, Israel’s high court abolished the so-called “black buses,” the Egged public buses used by the ultra-Orthodox, men in front, women in back. But Israel Religious Action Center (IRAC) director Anat Hoffman feels the decision falls short. She told the Jerusalem Post that, by making segregated seating voluntary, the court literally “left the back... Read more »
In the touristy areas of the French Quarter, which was relatively unscathed by Katrina, New Orleans streets are full of buskers. By the dozens, these street performers enact all kinds of feats: lumber balancing, group singing, break dancing, rapping; at least this was the assortment I took in when I was there a couple of... Read more »