Women and Judaism

New Insights and Scholarship

304 pages

November, 2009

ISBN: 9780814732199



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Frederick E. Greenspahn is Gimelstob Eminent Scholar of Judaic Studies at Florida Atlantic University.  He is the editor of The Hebrew Bible, Women in Judaism, Jewish Mysticism and Kabbalah, and Contemporary Israel, as well as author/editor of numerous other titles, including When Brothers Dwell Together.

All books by Frederick E. Greenspahn

Although women constitute half of the Jewish population and have always played essential roles in ensuring Jewish continuity and the preservation of Jewish beliefs and values, only recently have their contributions and achievements received sustained scholarly attention. Scholars have begun to investigate Jewish women’s domestic, economic, intellectual, spiritual, and creative roles in Jewish life from biblical times to the present. Yet little of this important work has filtered down beyond specialists in their respective academic fields. Women and Judaism brings the broad new insights they have uncovered to the world.

Women and Judaism communicates this research to a wider public of students and educated readers outside of the academy by presenting accessible and engaging chapters written by key senior scholars that introduce the reader to different aspects of women and Judaism. The contributors discuss feminist approaches to Jewish law and Torah study, the spirituality of Eastern European Jewish women, Jewish women in American literature, and many other issues.

Contributors: Nehama Aschkenasy, Judith R. Baskin, Sylvia Barack Fishman, Harriet Pass Freidenreich, Esther Fuchs, Judith Hauptman, Sara R. Horowitz, Renée Levine, Pamela S. Nadell, and Dvora Weisberg.


  • "The volume (Women and Judiasm) functions well for teaching, offering overview essays of recent scholarly developments and case studies of particular sources and genres."

    —K. Hannah Holtschneider, Journal of Jewish Studies

  • “These essays shine a clear and helpful light, enabling the reader to watch women from the time of the Bible onward step out from the shadows of history. An enriching and enlivening collection.”

    —Rabbi David Wolpe, author of Why Faith Matters

  • “In clear language accessible to lay readers, each informed essay provides tantalizing glimpses of the newly discovered lives of Jewish women, past and present. This volume offers a cogent and nuanced overview of current scholarship, outlining its broader implications for the field of Jewish Studies and setting the stage for future research. Ideal for both the university classroom and adult study.”

    —Dr. Ellen Frankel, CEO and Editor-in-Chief, The Jewish Publication Society