Spring 2018

What Will Change This

#MeToo in Jewish organizations? A girl encounters her sperm-donor half-siblings. The Skokie teenager who crushed on Jesus. What can you toss after a parent dies? Repairing women’s torn bodies in Rwanda.

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Donor Sperm: The Sequel


 A Jewish teen sets out to find the half-siblings who share her sperm donor. What happens next. 

The Accidental Archivist


Never mind paring down; our objects carry deep meaning. "Death turns everything into an heirloom."

The Book of Disaster


From For Single Mothers Working as Train Conductors:

"Everything began in Lithuania, of course. But where to begin in Lithuania?"

#MeToo in High School


I vividly recall the school-wide assembly my high school held to discuss date rape. Our friendly and peppy presenters reminded us that sex with a too-drunk-to-consent person was against the law even if both parties were inebriated, whereupon dozens of male students, in the throes of a tidal wave of shock, got up to decry... Read more »

Ditching “Boys Will Be Boys”


The stories in the media have left me wondering about all the men in my life. “Am I safe with you—not just physically, but existentially? Do you see me as fully human, created in the image of God, like you?” The fact that teenage girls are sitting in class wondering the same thing breaks my... Read more »

Women Who Are Rabbis Experience Their Own Brand of Harassment


“I’ve been harassed. It’s happened to every female rabbi I know,” Rabbi Rebecca Sirbu said. “People have an overwhelming sense of discomfort with women rabbis, because they’re women.”And female rabbis face an additional burden of harassment because they are occupying a powerful position once permitted only to men. “People have to start seeing women as... Read more »

Clues to Making Change


Listen when people talk about their experiences. Believe them. Use the power of the bima. Make your dvar torah/newsletter/sermon about #MeToo, sexual harassment, supporting women. “Is it sad to me that women have to use men’s voices to promote their own? Yes, but that’s going to be effective,” said Rabbi Rachel Ain of New York’s... Read more »

La Belle Juive


How does the 19th century's exotification of Jewish women shape the stereotypes we know?

Silences Between Mothers & Daughters


Probing the under-examined—and very unwelcome—rift between some mothers and their adult daughters. 

Who Is Stifling the Anger?


Some examples from mother and daughter relationships.

Repairing the World by Repairing Women’s Bodies in Rwanda and Niger


A teacher visiting Niger learned by chance about a shameful and widespread gynecological affliction—and took it upon herself to improve things. 

1992: Jesus for Jews


 She’s a teenager in Skokie, Illinois, with a crush—on Jesus Christ, the superstar.



When reverberations of sexual trauma can carry through to the next generation.

The Lives of Sarah


My cousin turned to salt when Sodom fell.I taste it still, as though my lips are pressedforever to her own. I’ll spend the restof time remembering her name. To hellwith tears! I haven’t cried since Ishmaelwas born. God hears!—but not my prayers, I guess.Besides, I’m dried up now: dry eyes, dry breasts,dry womb. My husband... Read more »

The Miscreants


"Mrs. Z. used to be  more religious, back when her family was  still around, but now she says offhandedly that observance is a tribal practice, and is not easily maintained on one’s own."

What Sexual Misconduct Costs a Community


Jewish nonprofit organizations can feel like an extension of a family, and boundary violations in a Jewish workplace setting seem often to be overlooked or forgiven for the sake of the cause itself.

My Summer in Hollywood


“Truth even unto its innermost parts.”—BRANDEIS UNIVERSITY MOTTO I was a student at Brandeis University when Anita Hill gave her groundbreaking testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee in the fall of 1991. This single courageous act sparked a national decades-long conversation on sexual harassment in the workplace, a conversation which, with allegations of abusive behavior... Read more »

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