Today I Am A Woman: Stories Of Bat Mitzvah Around The World

Hardcover | November 7, 2011

EditorBarbara Vinick, Shulamit Reinharz

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Recollections of the first bat mitzvah at the only synagogue in Indonesia, a poignant bat mitzvah memory of World War II Italy, and an American bat mitzvah shared with girls in a Ukrainian orphanage-these are a few of the resonant testimonies about the transition from Jewish girl to Jewish woman collected in Today I Am a Woman. Introduced by brief biographical notes and descriptions of Jewish communities around the world, these stories reveal how Judaism defines this important rite of passage in a girl's life in widely disparate settings. The contributions are from bat mitzvah girls of the past and present, their parents, communities, and religious leaders. Including evocative family photos-some recent, some from decades past-this rich compilation is an ideal gift for bat mitzvah celebrants, their families, and friends.

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Recollections of the first bat mitzvah at the only synagogue in Indonesia, a poignant bat mitzvah memory of World War II Italy, and an American bat mitzvah shared with girls in a Ukrainian orphanage-these are a few of the resonant testimonies about the transition from Jewish girl to Jewish woman collected in Today I Am a Woman. Introdu...

Barbara Vinick is affiliated with the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute at Brandeis University, where she has studied gendered rituals in Jewish communities worldwide.Shulamit Reinharz is the Jacob S. Potofsky Professor of Sociology at Brandeis University, where she is Director of the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute. Her publications include Ame...

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Today I Am a Woman: Stories of Bat Mitzvah around the World
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Kobo ebook|Nov 7 2011

$22.39 online$28.99list price(save 22%)
Format:HardcoverDimensions:296 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.1 inPublished:November 7, 2011Publisher:Indiana University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0253356938

ISBN - 13:9780253356932

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In Subotica [Serbia] in 1941, my sister Ru?a had her bat mitzvah, along with 14 other girls. The bat mitzvah was celebrated on the day of the festival of Shavuot. All 15 girls wore white dresses and white gloves and each held one white rose.... After the benediction they each received a book of prayers to remember the day.... Then the war broke out. My sister took that book of prayers with her to forced labor and managed to bring it back home. I hope she has it still. She lives in Subotica and I live in Israel.Edita Deri

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
Preface - Shulamit Reinharz
Introduction - Barbara Vinick
1: Africa
2: Asia
3: Australia and New Zealand
4: Caribbean
5: Europe
6: Former Soviet Union, Former Yugoslavia, and Eastern Europe
7: Latin America
8: Middle East and North Africa
9: North America
Glossary
For Further Reading

Editorial Reviews

"These testimonies constitute the incredible story of our people: the vast richness of Diaspora Jewry; the importance of family, community, and rabbis everywhere... ; the value of new expectations, as girls, even shy ones, rise to meet them. The book tells about the importance of bat mitzvah in an age of intermarriage, in a world of feminism, tradition, and change.... You will surely read this book as I did, through laughter and tears and the sweep of emotions about your own Jewish identity, the joy and pride and vulnerability of being a Jew." -Blu Greenberg, author of On Women and Judaism