Articles in Periodicals and Anthologies

Abrams, Jeanne. “Unsere Leit (‘Our People’): Anna Hillkowitz and the Development of the East European Jewish Woman Professional in America.”American Jewish Archives 37 (November 1985): 275-278.

Puts Hillkowitz’ career forward as typical of the volunteer-turned-paid professional communal worker. Hillkowitz served the Denver Jewish Consumptive Relief Society in the early 1900s. Her activities are well-documented through two hundred letters preserved in the Archives of the JCRS.

Albert, Marta. “Not Quite ‘A Quiet Revolution’: Jewish Women Reformers in Buffalo, New York, 1980-1914.” Shofar 9, no. 4 (Summer 1991): 62-77.

Takes issue with William Toll (below) that Jewish women’s social welfare work in the late nineteenth century was a gradual expansion of women’s sphere. In Buffalo, Albert found a more assertive challenge to notions of women’s proper sphere among women who fought for recognition in their community and synagogues.

Alperin, Harriet. “Where Were You During World War II: Today’s Michigan Jewish Women Remember With Patriotism and Pride.” Michigan Jewish History 35 (Winter 1994): 7-18.

Vignettes of Michigan Jewish women active in a variety of capacities during World War II, including in the military, as an assembly line worker, and a partisan who settled in Michigan after the war.

Antler, Joyce. “Between Culture and Politics: the Emma Lazarus Federation of Jewish Women’s Clubs and the Promulgation of Women’s History, 1944-1989.” In U.S. History as Women’s History, ed. Linda K. Kerber, Alice Kessler-Harris, and Kathryn K. Sklar, 267-95. Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina Press, 1995. Reprinted in Unequal Sisters: A Multicultural Reader in U.S. Women’s History, ed. Vicki L. Ruiz and Ellen Carol DuBois, 519-541.New York: Routledge, 2000.

Founded in the 1940s by Clara Lemlich Shavelson (who had rallied the shirtwaist workers to strike in 1909) and other radical activists like her, the Emma Lazarus Federation (ELF) fought anti-semitism and racial injustice, promoted women’s rights, the State of Israel, world peace, and consumer issues, and supported the remembrance of secular progressive Jewish women’s history. Antler argues that, like their namesake, the Emmas successfully integrated the female, radical, and Jewish aspects of their identities. Fills a gap in understanding what radical Jewish women did afterthe worker battles of the first part of the century.

Antler, Joyce. “A Bond of Sisterhood: Ethel Rosenberg, Molly Goldberg, and Radical Jewish Women of the 1950s.” In Secret Agents: The Rosenberg Case, McCarthyism, and Fifties America, ed. Marjorie Garber and Rebecca L. Walkowitz, 197-214. New York: Routledge, 1995.

Contrasts the media representation of the Gertrude Berg character, Molly Goldberg, the public persona of Ethel Rosenberg, and their actual selves. Molly Goldberg was much-beloved and the epitome of a good Jewish mother. She stayed home, worried about her family and neighbors, leant a sympathetic ear, and was a fixer-upper par excellence. What the public perceived of Ethel Rosenberg was a cold, controlling woman who could abandon her children with ease. In reality, Gertrude Berg was a superb professional, who created her character, wrote the scripts, directed and produced her show; and Ethel Rosenberg was intensely concerned about her parenting and her sons. Antler also discusses the defense of Rosenberg mounted by the leftist Emma Lazarus Federation of Jewish women, who were convinced of her innocence — or at least considered her fate to be marked by political persecution tinged with antisemitic overtones.

Ashton, Dianne. “Souls Have No Sex: Philadelphia Jewish Women and the American Challenge.” In When Philadelphia Was the Capital of Jewish America, ed. Murray Friedman, 34-57. Cranbury, NJ: Associated University Presses, 1993.

Demonstrates how several nineteenth-century Jewish women who remained unmarried (including Rebecca Gratz, Emily and Ellen Phillips and others) engaged in significant benevolent activity while maintaining firm commitments to Judaism and defending it against evangelists.

Avery, Evelyn. “Oh My Mishpocha! Some Jewish Women Writers From Antin to Kaplan View the Family.” In Studies in American Jewish Literature 5: The Varieties of Jewish Experience, ed. Daniel Walden, 44-53. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1986.

Finds similarities between two immigrant works (Mary Antin’s The Promised Land and Anzia Yezierska’s The Bread Givers) and contemporary family sagas (Helen Yglesias’ Family Feeling and Joanna Kaplan’s O My America!). Both the earlier and later works are rooted in the Yiddish past and explore the effects of assimilation on Jewish families, and all pay tribute to the Jewish mother as the mainstay of the family and repository of tradition. Critical of the vacuous, materialistic second and third generations, the contemporary novels are much more negative about the bargain struck by the immigrants in giving up traditional values in the interest of becoming fully Americanized.

Bergland, Betty. “Ideology, Ethnicity, and the Gendered Subject: Reading Immigrant Women’s Autobiographies.” In Seeking Common Ground: Multi-disciplinary Studies of Immigrant Women in the United States, ed. Donna Gabaccia, 101-121. Westport, CT: Praeger, 1992.

Uses the concept of chronotope (time/space) to compare and contrast the positioning of the subjects/authors of three Jewish women’s autobiographies. Mary Antin is the most Americanized of the three, yet she never has to deal with the problems of an adult woman since her autobiography ends in adolescence. Hilda Satt Polacheck, Hull-House resident, identifies with the traditional Jewish role of wife and mother, but remains critical of American values. The third, Emma Goldman, challenges prevailing American and Jewish ideologies alike, moving to a place (the public arena) unoccupied by many adult Jewish women of the time.

Berrol, Selma. “Class or Ethnicity: The Americanized German Jewish Woman and Her Middle Class Sisters in 1895.” Jewish Social Studies 47, no. 1 (Winter 1985): 21-35.

Compares Rosa Sonneschein’s The American Jewess to magazines aimed at the average middle-class American woman of the time.

Bienstock, Beverly Gray. “The Changing Image of the American Jewish Mother.” In Changing Images of the Family, ed. Virginia Tufte and Barbara Myerhoff, 173-191. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1979.

Interested in why the image of the solid immigrant Jewish mother of early twentieth- century novels by men degenerates into a “maternal vampire” by the 1960s. Attributing the shift to adaptation to America, Bienstock says that mothers came to epitomize the bourgeous materialism that 1930s writers revolted against. By the post-war era, writers treated the Jewish mother with condescension, parodied her, or blamed her for the sexual maladjustment and other inadequacies of her sons. Aside from the heroic mother in Anzia Yezierska’s The Bread Givers (1925), Bienstock takes no notice of the portrayal of mothers in Jewish women’s writings.

Blicksilver, Edith. “The Bintl Briv Woman Writer: Torn Between European Traditions and the American Life Style.” Studies in American Jewish Literature 3, no. 2 (Winter 1977- 78): 36-49.

Discusses the types of problems women wrote about to the Forward editor between 1906-1911, especially dealing with family matters. Cautions that the bintl letters have limitations as a research source because they were written by unhappy women, who may not be representative of all immigrant Jewish women at the time. Furthermore, only some of the thousands of letters sent to the newspaper were actually published, and many were heavily edited. Praises editor Abraham Cahan for his thoughtful responses.

Bodek, Evelyn. “`Making Do’: Jewish Women and Philanthropy.” In Jewish Life in Philadelphia, 1830-1940, ed. Murray Friedman, 143-162. Philadelphia: Institute for the Study of Human Issues, 1983.

Describes the leadership role played by a handful of German-Jewish women in founding and maintaining charitable institutions. They were especially attuned to the needs of poor women. The philanthropic women became highly adept at the political process and administration of organizations, yet were passed over for communal leadership when the Philadelphia Jewish community created a Federation of the various charities in 1901.

Braude, Ann. “The Jewish Woman’s Encounter With American Culture.” InWomen and Religion in America. Vol 1, The Nineteenth Century, eds. Rosemary Radford Ruether and Rosemary Skinner Keller, 150-192 (essay and documents). San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1981.

Discusses how the Enlightenment prepared German Jewish immigrants for the individualistic, voluntary model of religious life in America, where their Reform Judaism opened most doors to women (except ordination), but denigrated the commandments that had been specifically designated for women to perform. Covers the 1893 Congress of Jewish Women at the World Parliament of Religions.

Braude, Ann. “Jewish Women.” In In Our Own Voices: Four Centuries of American Women’s Religious Writing, ed. Rosemary Skinner Keller and Rosemary Radford Ruether, 109-152 (essay and documents). New York: HarperCollins, 1995.

Provides an overview of the status and practices of women in traditional Judaism useful to readers unfamiliar with Jewish tradition and summarizes the changes wrought by feminists who challenged exclusions. Regards the formation of Orthodox women’s prayer groups as more “radical” in its context than the achievement of equality in non-Orthodox branches of Judaism. Also mentions the attraction for some formerly secular women of the strictly prescribed Orthodox way of life.

Braude, Ann. “Jewish Women in the Twentieth Century: Building a Life in America.” In Women and Religion in America. Vol. 3, 1900-1968, eds. Rosemary Skinner Keller and Rosemary Radford Ruether, 131-174 (essay and documents). San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1986.

Overview of religious conflicts for Jewish women seeking to move beyond the sphere of home and family.

Brav, Stanley R. “The Jewish Woman, 1861-1865.” American Jewish Archives 17, no. 1 (April 1965): 34-75.

Draws on memoirs collected by Jacob Marcus in Memoirs of American Jews 1775- 1865 (Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society, 1955-56), newspaper accounts, letters, and other material to demonstrate the acculturation of Jewish women in America at the time of the Civil War. Discusses their education, household duties, social life, employment, and support for the war effort in both the North and South.

Brodsky, Naomi. “The First 100 Years of the National Council of Jewish Women.” Rhode Island Jewish Historical Notes 11, no. 3 (1993): 359-369.

A decade-by-decade review of the accomplishments of the Providence, Rhode Island, section of the Council.

Chevat, Edith. “In For the Long Haul: Edith Chevat in Conversation With Annette & Friends.” Bridges 6, no. 1 (Summer 1996): 7-30.

Chevat converses with three Jewish women activists then in their 80s: literary critic and American Labor Party officer Annette Rubinstein, civil rights and anti-Vietnam War activist Beatrice (Bd) Magdoff, and social worker Sherry (Elizabeth) Most, who was also active in the anti-Vietnam War movement. They discuss their involvements, careers, and what being Jewish means to them.

Clar, Reva. “Women in the Weekly Gleaner, Part I.” Western States Jewish History 17, no. 4 (July 1985): 333-346; Part II: WSJH 18, no. 1 (October 1985): 44-57.

Rabbi Julius Eckman, editor of the San Franciso Jewish newspaper founded in 1857, was sympathetic towards women. In the Gleaner, he offered advice to women and covered their involvement in the community.

Cohn, Josephine. “Communal Life of San Francisco: Jewish Women in 1908.” Western States Jewish History 20, no. 1 (October 1987): 15-36.

Reprint of 1908 article by a school principal and Hebrew teacher that provides details on Jewish women’s organizations shortly after the San Francisco earthquake.

Drucker, Sally Ann. “‘It Doesn’t Say So in Mother’s Prayerbook’: Autobiographies in English by Immigrant Jewish Women.” American Jewish History 79 (Autumn 1989): 55-71. Somewhat different version published as “Wandering Between Worlds: Autobiographies in English by Immigrant Jewish Women.” In Women in History, Literature and the Arts: A Festschrift for Hildegard Schnuttgen, eds. Lorrayne Y. Baird-Lange and Thoman A. Copeland, 275-294. Youngstown, OH: Youngstown State University, 1989.

Identifies nineteen autobiographies by fifteen women authors who achieved prominence later in life. Most chose to dwell on their early years in Europe and America in their autobiographies rather than their subsequent public roles. Discusses the importance of the genre and treats in more detail the autobiographies of four fiction writers: Mary Antin, Rose Cohen, Elizabeth Stern, and Anzia Yezierska.

Eisen, George. “Sport, Recreation and Gender: Jewish Immigrant Women in Turn-of-the-Century America (1880-1920).” Journal of Sport History 18, no. 1 (Spring 1991): 103-120.

Discusses the increase in consciousness of sports and recreation due to the efforts of settlement houses, self-help organizations for the working girl, and the realization among the women that such activities could provide an avenue for self-expression and a break from traditional role expectations.

Frank, Dana. “Housewives, Socialists, and the Politics of Food: The 1917 New York Cost- Of-Living Protests.” Feminist Studies 11, no. 2 (Summer 1985): 255-285.

Spontaneous demonstrations and boycotts characterized the reaction of Jewish housewives to rising prices for staples. In contrast, male socialists directed their energies at advocating for higher wages.

Fridkis, Ari Lloyd. “Desertion in the American Jewish Immigrant Family: The Work of the National Desertion Bureau in Cooperation with the Industrial Removal Office,” American Jewish History 71 (December 1981): 285-99.

Similar to Friedman’s article (below), with greater emphasis on the relationship between the National Desertion Bureau and the Industrial Removal Office. Reports that the Bureau handled over 12,000 cases of desertion from its founding in 1902 through 1922. Disagrees with Irving Howe who, in World of Our Fathers (New York: Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich, 1976, p. 180), viewed desertion as a less significant problem than conflict between generations. In Fridkis’ eyes, such desertions must have wrecked havoc in families, not just marriages. Most common reasons given for desertion according to a 1912 report: insufficient dowry, another woman, and “bad habits.”

Friedman, Reena Sigman. “The Jewish Feminist Movement.” In Jewish American Voluntary Organizations, ed. Michael N. Dobkowski, 575-601. Westport: Greenwood, 1986.

Chronicles Jewish feminist events from the late 1960s through the mid-1980s, including the creation of Ezrat Nashim in 1971. This group began by studying traditional Jewish sources in order to evaluate the position of women in Judaism and moved to activism in 1972 when it submitted a position paper calling for change to a convention of Conservative rabbis. Ezrat Nashim also organized the first national Jewish women’s conference in 1973, with subsequent conferences in 1974 and 1975. Discusses the formation of the Jewish Feminist Organization, which grew out of second conference, the founding of Lilith Magazine (1976), and successful openings in religious roles.

Friedman, Reena Sigma. “‘Send Me My Husband Who Is in New York City’: Husband Desertion in the American Jewish Immigrant Community, 1900-1926.” Jewish Social Studies 44, no. 1 (Winter 1982): 1-18. Reprinted inEast European Jews in America, 1880-1920: Immigration and Adaptation, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 2: 577-594. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Similar in scope to Fridkis’s article (above), this study uses archival material from the National Desertion Bureau, established by the National Council of Jewish Charities, to chart the extent and impact of desertion. More details than in Fridkis on the causes and impact of desertion. Cites studies that found marital infidelity to be the principal cause, followed by economic hardship, cheerless existences, poor health, and incompatibility. The total economic dependence of wives made many unwilling to testify against their husbands when they were apprehended. Some even turned to prostitution. Concludes that desertion was probably under-reported and that a fuller picture would emerge with an analysis of female- headed households in the Jewish population, combined with figures from orphanages, and other sources of data.

Generations (Jewish Historical Society of Maryland), 5, no. 1 (June/July 1984).

Includes “The Origins of Jewish Women’s Social Service Work in Baltimore,” by Cynthia H. Requardt, and several articles on individual Jewish women in Maryland.

Goldman, Karla. “The Ambivalence of Reform Judaism: Kaufmann Kohler and the Ideal Jewish Woman.” American Jewish History 79, no. 4 (Summer 1990): 477-99. Reprinted in The History of Judaism in America: Transplantations, Transformations, and Reconciliations, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 2: 713-735. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Reform rabbinical leader Kohler saw women as embodying an idealized Jewish past when Judaism was centered in homes imbued with Jewish values and customs. Even though Kohler championed equality for women in the synagogue, Goldman makes a convincing case that he still wanted them to maintain the Jewish home of yore and did not see the contradiction.

Goldman, Karla. “Not Simple Arithmetic.” Shofar 14, no. 1 (Fall 1995): 101-105; somewhat modified version published as “When the Women Came to Shul.” In Judaism Since Gender, ed. Miriam Peskowitz and Laura Levitt, 57-61. New York: Routledge, 1997.

Discusses the salience of gender to the molding of American Judaism as seen through changes in architectural features of synagogue design as well as other accommodations to the dominant presence of women at Sabbath services. Fully articulated in Goldman’s dissertation, Beyond the Gallery: The Place of Women in the Development of American Judaism (Ph.D., Harvard University, 1993).

Golinkin, David. “Rethinking the American Jewish Experience: the Movement for Equal Rights for Women in Judaism as Reflected in the Writings of Rabbi David Aronson.” American Jewish Archives 47, no. 2 (1995): 243-260.

From articles and a letter written by Conservative rabbi David Aronson spanning the period 1922-1987, demonstrates that Rabbi Aronson was a strong advocate for women’s religious equality, who supported his views with Talmudic and rabbinic sources.

Golomb, Deborah Grand. “The 1893 Congress of Jewish Women: Evolution or Revolution in American Jewish Women’s History.” American Jewish History 70 (September 1980): 52-67. Reprinted in Central European Jews in America, 1840-1880: Migration and Advancement, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock: 327-342. New York: Routledge, 1998.

While revolutionary in form, as the first such national gathering of Jewish women, the Congress is to Golomb more evolutionary in substance. The women involved were not associated with women’s rights movement, and the antecedents for the National Council of Jewish Women, which grew out of the Congress, were women’s clubs, not suffrage organizations. Nevertheless, Golomb concludes that the Congress was a pivotal event, providing a model for a national organization that went on to expand the sphere of women’s endeavors.

Greenberg, Blu. “The Feminist Revolution in Orthodox Judaism in America.” In Divisions Between Traditionalism and Liberalism in the Jewish Community: Cleft or Chasm, ed. Michael Shapiro, 55-78. Lewiston, NY: E. Mellon Press, 1991.

Relates a host of examples of feminist influences on Orthodox Judaism incorporated during the 1970s and 1980s that, taken as a whole, for Greenberg constitute a redefinition of women’s roles in the Orthodox community. Examples include activism surrounding the status of theagunah, women’s prayer groups, birth ceremonies for girls, Talmud study for girls and women, women in leadership positions within Orthodox congregations, and women in some circumstances reciting the kiddush andmourner’s kaddish, saying the birkat ha-mazon (grace after meals), reciting lines under the chuppah (marriage canopy), and more.

Harris, Joanna Gewertz. “From Tenement to Theater: Jewish Women As Dance Pioneers: Helen Becker (Tamiris), Anna Sokolow, Sophie Maslow.”Judaism 45 (Summer 1996): 259- 276.

Enlightening look at three children of Eastern European Jewish immigrants who became modern dance innovators. Each took part in the Neighborhood Playhouse of the Henry Street Settlement (New York) and drew inspiration for her choreography from her Jewish heritage in different ways. Tamiris advocated racially-mixed companies and was dedicated to encompassing multi-cultural elements. Sokolow created dances around social concerns, and Maslow used Shalom Aleichem stories as a motif along with other folk elements.

Hauptman, Judith. “The Ethical Challenge of Feminist Change.” In The Americanization of the Jews, ed. Robert M. Seltzer and Norman J. Cohen, 296-308. New York: New York University Press, 1995.

Attributes the rapid acceptance of Jewish feminism to the liberalism of the American Jewish community, the openness of American society to new ideas, the coming of age of the Jewish community, and its pluralistic denominational structure. Hauptman focuses primarily on developments in the Conservative Movement. The way was eased by the fact decades earlier the Conservative Movement had made a number of radical changes in ritual, such as removing the mehitzah (separation) and allowing men and women to sit together in the synagogue. The Movement’s Committee on Jewish Law and Standards readily voted to sanction local rabbis who permitted women in their congregations to be counted in the minyan (prayer quorum) to lead prayers and to function as witnesses. Rabbinic ordination was a thornier matter, but it, too, eventually succumbed, and women candidates for the rabbinate were admitted to the Movement’s Seminary beginning in 1983. Hauptman ends by calling for a recognition that halakhah (Jewish law) can and does evolve in light of new ethical understandings. Egalitarianism is such a principle and therefore should be regarded as a halakhically-sanctioned development.

Hellerstein, Kathryn. “A Question of Tradition: Women Poets in Yiddish.” InHandbook of American-Jewish Literature: An Analytic Guide to Topics, Themes, and Sources, ed. Louis Fried, 195-237. New York: Greenwood, 1988.

Reviews the literary history of Yiddish poetry and its anthologizing, with a detailed examination of Ezra Korman’s 1928 Yidishe Dikhterins Antologye(Yiddish Women Writers Anthology), which included poetry going back to the 16th century written in Yidish-Taytsh (old Yiddish), but emphasized twentieth-century immigrant women’s work. While their poems reflect the same modernist shift from political and collective themes to more personal statements found in poetry by men, the women’s writings show their special stance as women Jews writing in Yiddish. According to Hellerstein, evaluation and re-evaluation of the women poets is just beginning.

Herscher, Uri D., guest ed. “The East European Immigrant Jew in America (1881-1981).” American Jewish Archives 33, no. 1 (April 1981).

Entire issue devoted to memoirs of the immigrant experience, including Ida R. Feeley on growing up on the East Side (New York); remarks by Lillian Wald to an 1896 convention of the National Council of Jewish women concerning crowded districts; and the experiences of being raised in Arkansas, by Jeannette W. Bernstein, and in North Dakota, by Bessie Schwartz.

“History Is the Record of Human Beings: A Documentary.” American Jewish Archives 31, no. 1 (April 1979).

Entire issue devoted to memoirs expressing the many different life experiences of American Jews. Includes Margaret Sanger on the misery she saw in the tenements, an autobiographical sketch of Nobel Prize winner Rosalyn Yalow, a nineteenth-century mother (Rebecca Cohen) coping with the loss of her infant, a 1931 report on a tragic voyage by Lena Pearlstein Berkman, and thoughts concerning “The Jewish Woman, The Jewish Home, and the Ideal Achieved,” by Jennie R. Gerstley of Chicago (1931).

Horvitz, Eleanor F. “The Years of the Jewish Woman.” Rhode Island Jewish Historical Notes 7, no. 1 (1975): 152-170.

Discusses the benevolent organizations established by Jewish women in Rhode Island from the 1870s onward.

Horvitz, Eleanor F. “The Jewish Woman Liberated: A History of the Ladies Hebrew Free Loan Association.” Rhode Island Jewish Historical Notes 7, no. 4 (1975): 501- 512.

Focuses on an organization founded in 1931 that existed until 1965, which provided free loans to Jewish women.

Hyman, Paula. “Culture and Gender: Women in the Immigrant Jewish Community.” In The Legacy of Jewish Migration: 1881 and Its Impact, ed. David Berger, 157-168. New York, Columbia University Press, 1983. Reprinted in East European Jews in America, 1880-1920: Immigration and Adaptation, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 3: 931-942. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Focuses on the intersection of gender, class, and Jewishness in standards for social and political behavior, extent and nature of employment, and formation of informal support networks of immigrant women. Identifies areas in need of further research.

Hyman, Paula. “Ezrat Nashim and the Emergence of New Jewish Feminism.” In The Americanization of the Jews, ed. Robert M. Seltzer and Norman J. Cohen, 284-295. New York: New York University Press, 1995.

As a participant-observer of American Jewish feminism, Hyman reflects on the reasons why early goals enunciated by religiously-committed Jewish feminists in Ezrat Nashim were so readily accepted, and why later, more profound calls have met with less success. Besides the general receptivity of the Jewish community to claims based on equality and steps such as mixed seating in synagogues that had prepared the way, equal education for boys and girls created a cadre of educated Jewish women who cogently argued the case for equality. The Ezrat Nashim members were products of the best Jewish education offered by the Conservative Movement. Firmly rooted in Judaism, they functioned from within the community. Similarly, educated Orthodox feminists could often find local rabbis supportive of women’s prayer groups. Reform Judaism, having no halakhic (Jewish law) constraints, had decided to admit women to rabbinical study before the Jewish feminist movement had crystalized. But liturgical changes and the incorporation of women’s experiences into ritual and midrash have been harder to achieve. Feminists themselves are divided in the need for such changes, and many Jews remain emotionally attached or fear changes in the nature of Judaism. Hyman urges feminists to challenge those who regard feminism itself as a threat to Jewish survival.

Hyman, Paula. “Feminist Studies and Modern Jewish History.” Feminist Perspectives on Jewish Studies, eds. Lynn Davidman and Shelly Tenenbaum, 120-139. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994.

Reviews the beginning steps in Jewish historiography towards recognition of gender as an analytic tool. From subsuming women under the universal (male) experience or ignoring their womanly activities entirely, historians influenced by twenty years of feminist historical scholarship started to add prominent women and the treatment of women to their work. More recently historians have begun to use concepts of gender analysis to re-examine Jewish history as a whole. The supposed split between public and private spheres is challenged by women’s involvement in social welfare and philanthropy, which grew out of familial and group relationships. The notion that assimilation in America was a rapid sharp break with the past does not hold up when women’s roles as consumers and domestic managers are examined. Hyman raises several areas for further research, among them the implications of transferring principal responsibility for Jewish cultural transmission to mothers, the meaning of community for women, and the impact of female entrance into the Rabbinate. Closes with a challenge to her fellow historians to enrich the understanding of Jewish history with attention to gender.

Hyman, Paula. “Gender and the Immigrant Jewish Experience in the United States.” Jewish Women in Historical Perspective, ed. Judith R. Baskin, 222-242. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1991.

Uses gender as an analytical category with which to rethink the conventional views of historians about the acculturation of American Jews. Jewish women experienced America differently from Jewish men and from other women. Many came alone as single women, distinguishing their trajectory from that of other ethnicities where husbands and single men invariably emigrated first. Their work options were restricted to jobs considered suitable for women, but they embraced unionism and the fight for suffrage as opportunities to exercise their independence. Unlike other immigrant women, married Jewish women generally stopped working outside the home. Although their economic situation was dependent on their husbands, when their income was comfortable, the women turned their attention to social and communal philanthropies.

Hyman, Paula. “Immigrant Women and Consumer Protest: The New York City Kosher Meat Boycott of 1902.” American Jewish History 70 (September 1980): 91-105. Reprinted in The American Jewish Experience: A Reader, ed. by Jonathan D. Sarna, 135-146. New York: Holmes & Meier, 1986. Reprinted in East European Jews in America, 1880-1920: Immigration and Adaptation, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 3: 915-929 (New York: Routledge, 1998) and in American Jewish Women’s History: A Reader, ed. Pamela S. Nadell, 116-128 (New York: New York University Press, 2003).

Shows how the Jewish, female, and Americanized aspects of the immigrant identities coalesced into collective action against the price of kosher meat. While short-lived, the effectiveness of collective action by women was not lost on their sisters, daughters, or unions. Hyman considers the protest a prelude to the garment workers’ strikes a decade later.

Hyman, Paula. “The Introduction of the Bat Mitzvah in Conservative Judaism in Postwar America.” YIVO Annual 19 (1990): 133-146.

Anshe Emet Congregation in Chicago made the Bat Mitzvah a regular occurrence in the 1940s and held a service in 1952 conducted by women, at which women were called to the Torah for all the aliyot. The Brooklyn Jewish Center had its first Bat Mitsvah in 1955 with the impetus coming from the Education Committee of the Hebrew School desirous of keeping girls in the School.

Joselit, Jenna Weissman. “Saving Souls: The Vocational Training of American Jewish Women 1880-1930.” In An Inventory of Promises: Essays on American Jewish History in Honor of Moses Rischin, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock and Marc Lee Raphael, 151-169. Brooklyn: Carlson, 1995.

On the mission and operations of the Louis Downtown Sabbath School, later called the Hebrew Technical School for Girls, established in 1880 by Minnie Louis and other “Uptown” Jewish women who wished to Americanize the “Downtown” masses. The school added industrial education five years later, with a curriculum that included cutting and fitting of dresses, sewing, millinery, bookkeeping, “type-writing,” business penmanship, and housework. The girls themselves rejected outright domestic service as a career and preferred commercial to manual training, but their ultimate goal was marriage. Neither the school nor the students moved beyond a gendered view of options.

Joselit, Jenna Weissman. “The Special Sphere of the Middle Class American Jewish Woman: The Synagogue Sisterhood, 1890-1940.” In The American Synagogue: A Sanctuary Transformed, ed. Jack Wertheimer, 206-230. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1987. Reprinted in The History of Judaism in America: Transplantations, Transformations, and Reconciliations, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 3: 1215-1239.. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Studies the common pattern of sisterhood activities and attitudes in three New York synagogues of different denominations and concludes that they in no way challenged the assumption that women’s sphere was the home. Sisterhoods during the era examined were religious housekeepers of the synagogues, with responsibilities extending from decorating a sukkah in an aesthetically-pleasing manner to providing food at youth events. In Joselit’s view, the sisterhoods were only negligible forces for change.

Karsh, Audrey R. “Mothers and Daughters of Old San Diego.” Western States Jewish History 19, no. 3 (April 1987): 264-270. Reprinted as “Hannah Solomon Jacobs, Victoria Jacobs, Hannah Mannasse and Celita Mannasse of Old San Diego,” in Jewish Women of the American West: An Anthology of Articles Published by Western States Jewish History, ed. Gladys Sturman and David Epstein, 5-12. Los Angeles, Western States Jewish History Association, 2003.

Principally about Hannah Solomons Jacobs, the first Jewish woman to settle in San Diego (1851), her daughters, and Hannah Mannasse and her daugher Celita.

Kessler-Harris, Alice. “Organizing the Unorganizable: Three Jewish Women and Their Union.” Labor History 17, no. 1 (Winter 1976): 5-23; reprinted inClass, Sex and the Woman Worker, ed. Milton Cantor and Bruce Laurie, 144-165 (Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1977); in East European Jews in America, 1880-1920: Immigration and Adaptation, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 3: 943-961 (New York: Routledge, 1998); and in American Jewish Women’s History: A Reader, ed. Pamela S. Nadell, 100-115 (New York: New York University Press, 2003).

The three indefatigable organizers of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union studied are Pauline Newman, Fannia Cohn, and Rose Pesotta. Each saw her options as either career with the Union or marriage and children, and each chose the Union. Kessler-Harris credits the high value American Jewish culture placed on self-sufficiency with influencing their decisions.

Kirshenblatt-Gimblett, Barbara. “The Kosher Gourmet in the Nineteenth-Century Kitchen: Three Jewish Cookbooks in Historical Perspective.” Journal of Gastronomy 2, no. 4 (Winter 1986-87): 51-89.

Puts cookbooks forward as a source full of information on social, religious, and domestic life, particularly of women. Discusses Jewish Cookery, by Esther Levy, the first Jewish cookbook in the United States (Philadelphia, 1871).

Klingenstein, Susanne. “`But My Daughters Can Read the Torah’: Careers of Jewish Women in Literary Academe.” American Jewish History 83 (June 1995): 247-86.

Describes the professional paths of five Jewish female professors of literature: Susan Gubar, Carolyn Heilbrun, Marjorie Garber, Carole Kessner, and Barbara Herrnstein Smith. None received a Jewish education as a child comparable to that of boys of their generation, yet both gender and Jewishness affect their lives and careers. A groundbreaking study of Jewish women in a profession.

Korelitz, Seth. “A Magnificent Piece of Work: The Americanization Work of the National Council of Jewish Women.” American Jewish History 83 (June 1995): 177-203.

Argues that the NCJW differed from other Americanizing organizations in its support for the expansion of women’s role into the public sphere.

Kramer, William M. and Norton B. Stern. “A Woman Who Pioneered Modern Fundraising in the West.” Western States Jewish History 19, no. 4 (July 87): 335-45.

On Anna Myers, wife of the founding Rabbi of the oldest Conservative synagogue in Los Angeles.

Krause, Corinne Azen. “Urbanization Without Breakdown: Italian, Jewish, and Slavic Immigrant Women in Pittsburgh, 1900-1945.” Journal of Urban History 4, no. 3 (May 1978): 291- 306; excerpted in Immigrant Women, ed. Maxine Schwartz Seller, 62-67. 2nd ed. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1994.

Based on interviews with forty-five women who on the whole succeeded in adjusting to America, helped by family, neighbors, churches and synagogues, and ethnic communities.

Lamoree, Karen M. “Why Not a Jewish Girl? The Jewish Experience at Pembroke College in Brown University.” Rhode Island Jewish Historical Notes10, no. 2 (1988): 122-140.

Discusses admissions policy and campus life of Jewish students admitted during the period 1897-1949.

Lederhendler, Eli. “Guides for the Perplexed: Sex, Manners, and Mores for the Yiddish Reader in America.” Modern Judaism 11, no. 3 (October 1991): 321-41.

Examines the advice manuals and journals written or translated into Yiddish that sought to Americanize immigrant Jews through instructing them in manners, hygiene, fashion, parenting, sexuality, and birth control. Since most of these topics fall within the traditional sphere relegated to women, the literature was often addressed to them specifically.

Lerner, Anne Lapidus. “‘Who Has Not Made Me a Man’: The Movement for Equal Rights for Women in American Jewry.” American Jewish Year Book 77 (1977): 3-38.

Often-cited article on the effect feminism has had on Orthodox, Conservative, and Reform Judaism in America.

Lerner, Elinor. “American Feminism and the Jewish Question, 1890-1940.” In Anti-Semitism in American History, ed. David Gerber, 305-328. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1986. Reprinted in Anti-Semitism in America, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock. v. 1: 389-412. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Indicts American feminism for “non-recognition of Jewish existence.” The movement took no stand in the 1930s on mounting persecution of Jews in Europe, and Jewish support for feminism was rendered invisible.

Lerner, Elinor. “Jewish Involvement in the New York City Woman Suffrage Movement.” American Jewish History 70, no. 4 (June 1981): 442-461. Reprinted in Women and the Structure of Society: Selected Research From the Fifth Berkshire Conference on the History of Women, eds. Barbara J. Harris and JoAnn K. McNamara, 191-205, Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1984, and in East European Jews in America, 1880-1920: Immigration and Adaptation, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 3: 963-982. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Demonstrates that Jewish women regarded women’s suffrage as a civil rights issue completely in accord with American notions of equality. Discusses the roles played in the movement by Ernestine Rose, Maud Nathan, and Rose Schneiderman and the legions of immigrant Jewish women in the victorious quest for voting rights.

Litt, Jacquelyn. “Mothering, Medicalization, and Jewish Identity, 1928-1940.” Gender & Society 10, no. 2 (April 1996): 185-198.

Uses narratives of 20 Jewish women who gave birth to their first child between 1928 and 1940 to examine the relationship between mothers and medical discourse. The women were eager to adopt medicalized mothering practices as a sign of their advancement from immigrant culture into the American middle class. She also her Medicalized Motherhood : Perspectives From the Lives of African-American and Jewish Women. New Brunswick, N.J. : Rutgers University Press, c2000.

Monson, Rela Geffen. “The Impact of the Jewish Women’s Movement on the American Synagogue: 1972-1985.” In Daughters of the King: Women and the Synagogue, a Survey of History, Halakhah, and Contemporary Realities,ed. Susan Grossman and Rivka Haut, 227-236. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society 1992.

Credits the feminist movement and gains made by educated, professional Jewish women in the outside world with awakening their desire for change within Judaism. Sparked by the actions of Ezrat Nashim, a Jewish women’s study group turned activist, in the early 1970s religiously-committed Jewish women focused their energies on obtaining equality within the synagogue, the locus of Jewish life. Life cycle rituals were affected next, including in the Orthodox community, which introduced the simhat bat (naming ceremony for a baby girl) and extended the concept of Bat Mitzvah to mark the coming of age for Orthodox girls. Orthodox women’s prayer groups formed as well. The impact on the Conservative Movement has been considerable, from ordaining women rabbis since 1985 to ceding to women many leadership positions within congregations. Developing gender-neutral liturgical language became an interest of Jewish women in the Reform Movement. Essay is followed by personal vignettes from women across the religious spectrum with varying views of the changes wrought.

Moore, Deborah Dash. “Studying the Public and Private Selves of American Jewish Women.” Lilith 10 (Winter 1983): 28-30.

Summarizes the state of historiography of Jewish women’s history as of that date.

Nadell, Pamela S., guest ed. American Jewish History 83, no. 2 (June 1995).

Thematic issue on American Jewish women’s history, with articles by Dianne Ashton on nineteenth-century Philadelphia community leader Mary M. Cohen; Seth Korelitz on the National Council of Jewish Women; Norma Baumel Joseph on Rabbi Moshe Feinstein’s view of Jewish education for women; Shuly Rubin Schwartz on the rebbetzin in twentieth-century America; Susanne Klingenstein on careers of Jewish women in literary academe; and reviews of two books on Jewish women. In the introduction, Nadell reviews the course of incorporation of women and gender into Jewish historiography.

Nadell, Pamela S. “A Land of Opportunities: Jewish Women Encounter America.” In What is American About American Jewish History, ed. Marc Lee Raphael, 73-90. Williamsburg, VA: Department of Religion, College of William and Mary, 1993.

Nadell extends to women’s experiences a three-factor paradigm (freedom-frontier- immigration) used by Abraham J. Karp to explain what in the American national character most influenced the American Jewish community. For women, freedom of religion led to the establishment of synagogues and associated organizations where women were allowed increasing roles, particularly in Reform congregations. Frontier communities educated girls and boys together, and a dearth of traditional leaders opened up opportunities for women that included acting as Rabbis in some instances. The immigration of Eastern European Jews created Conservative institutions that permitted women to become leaders more slowly than did the Reform movement, yet also gradually allowed women such roles.

Nadell, Pamela S. “Rereading Charles S. Leibman: Questions From the Perspective of Women’s History.” American Jewish History 80, no.4 (Summer 1991): 502-516.

Gracious comments on sociologist Liebman’s body of work give way to chiding for his failure to include women in his studies. Provides examples where Liebman generalized about American Jewish life from exclusively male samples and calls gender an essential category of history. In a rejoinder (“A Perspective On My Studies of American Jews,” pp. 517-534), Liebman retorts that he does not think his results would have been any different had he surveyed women, and that gender, like class and ethnicity, is not salient in every place and at all times.

Nadell, Pamela S. “‘Top Down’ or ‘Bottom Up'” Two Movements for Women’s Rabbinic Ordination.” In An Inventory of Promises: Essays on American Jewish History in Honor of Moses Rischin, ed. Jeffrey Gurock and Marc Lee Raphael, 197-208. Brooklyn: Carlson, 1995.

Contrasts the “top down” direction in which rabbinical ordination of women became sanctioned in the Reform Movement with the “bottom up” pathway taken by the Conservative Movement.

Nadell, Pamela S. “The Women Who Would Be Rabbis.” In Gender and Judaism: The Transformation of Tradition, ed. T.M. Rudavsky, 123-134. New York: New York University Press, 1995. Reprinted in American Jewish Women’s History: A Reader, ed. Pamela S. Nadell, 175-184. New York: New York University Press, 2003.

Situates the movement for women’s rabbinic ordination within the historiography of women in the professions and focuses on the handful of women who enrolled in rabbinical school courses, raising the issue of ordination in concrete terms. The story of Irma Levy Lindheims, a well-to-do New York matron and mother of five who became an ardent Zionist and full-time student in the Jewish Institute of Religion in the 1920s, is a particularly compelling one. Although she did not complete her studies, she went on to become the second president of Hadassah, which she wrote made her feel more truly ordained than if she had been confirmed as a Rabbi. Laura Geller’s essay in this anthology is a useful companion piece because it examines the nature of women’s rabbinical leadership in the 1990s, after hundreds of women have been ordained.

Nadell, Pamela S. and Rita J. Simon. “Ladies of the Sisterhood: Women in the American Reform Synagogue, 1900-1930.” In Active Voices: Women in Jewish Culture, ed. Maurie Sacks, 63-75. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1995.

The founding of the first Reform sisterhood in 1905 by Carrie Simon, wife of the Rabbi of Washington Hebrew Congregation, was influenced by a history of general benevolence performed by Hebrew ladies aid societies, the growth of synagogues as central institutions of American Jewish life, and parallel women’s organizations in churches. Once established, individual sisterhoods and their umbrella organization, the National Federation of Temple Sisterhoods, moved beyond supporting activities to involvement in shaping the customs and role for women in Reform Judaism. Differs with Joselit who views sisterhoods as negligible factors of change.

Neu, Irene D. “The Jewish Businesswoman in America.” American Jewish Historical Quarterly 66, no. 1 (1976): 137-154.

Describes several Sephardic women merchants and shopkeepers in the eighteenth century, when it was not unusual for women to engage in business, particularly if they were unmarried or widowed. This is followed by discussion of fewer acceptable options for nineteenth-and early twentieth-century German and Eastern European immigrant married women, who could join their husbands in shopkeeping and small manufacturing ventures, but rarely set out on their own. Single women might work as domestics or in factories, but did not pursue business ventures. Neu recounts stories of some Eastern European women who showed marked entrepreneurial ability and were more enterprising than their husbands within familial businesses. After the immigrant generation, few Jewish women were engaged in business, expending their energies instead on volunteer work.

Pratt, Norma Fain. “Culture and Radical Politics: Yiddish Women Writers, 1890-1940. American Jewish History 70, no. 1 (1980): 68-90. Reprinted inDecades of Discontent: The Women’s Movement, 1920-1940, ed. Lois Scharf and Joan M. Jensen, 131-152, Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1983, and in Women of the Word: Jewish Women and Jewish Writing, ed. Judith R. Baskin, 111-135. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1994.

Deals with the lives and works of some fifty writers virtually ignored by historians until Pratt rediscovered them. They shared a proletarian Eastern European Jewish background and poorly educated parents (with many of the mothers being close to illiterate). They themselves received little advanced formal education, yet became journalists, poets, and fiction writers in their own language in America. Their writing appeared in radical, secular Yiddish newspapers and literary journals and spoke of female, Jewish, and working-class concerns and adjustments to life in America. Pratt discusses the experiences that brought many of the women to writing, and the lives of several of the writers, including Hinde Zaretsky, Esther Luria, Anna Rappaport, Fradel Stock, Yente Serdatzky, Celia Dropkin, Anna Margolin, Rachel Holtman, and Kadya Molodowsky. An appendix lists the poets, with their birth and immigration dates.

Pratt, Norma Fain. “Immigrant Jewish Women in Los Angeles: Occupation, Family and Culture.” In Studies in American Jewish Experience, ed. Jacob R. Marcus and Abraham J. Peck, 78-89. Cincinnati: American Jewish Archives, 1981.

Takes issue with Irving Howe’s view in World of Our Fathers that Eastern European Jewish women lost their importance in the family economy and had only marriage, motherhood and ‘ladylike passivity’ as roles. Pratt found a more complex situtation when she examined their experiences in Los Angeles between 1900 and 1940. Like men, women were expected to work and to move from working to middle class through education for middle class occupations, which for women meant clerical work.

Pratt, Norma Fain. “Transitions in Judaism: The Jewish American Woman Through the 1930s.” American Quarterly 30, no. 5 (Winter 1978): 681-702; reprinted in Women in American Religion, ed. Janet Wilson James, 207-228. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1980.

Explains the Orthodox, Conservative, and Reform movements in American Judaism as background to discussion of changes in the type and degree of participation by women in the 1920s. In Reform and Conservative branches, only actual religious services stayed in the realm of the sacred, while Jewish education, philanthropy, social services and culture moved outside the orbit of Talmudic/rabbinic regulation. These areas, therefore, became open to women, who availed themselves of the opportunities for involvement. Also discusses Der yidisher froyen zhurnal [The Jewish Ladies Journal], 1922-23, memoirs, poetry and other writings by women, their organizations, and the education of girls.

Pratt, Norma Fain. “Women Moving Forward: Dreamers, Builders, Leaders: A History of Jewish Women in Southern California.” Legacy [Southern California Jewish Historical Society] 1, no. 3 (Spring 1989), entire issue (61 p.)

Captures some significant names, events, and experiences of Jewish women settlers in Southern California from the mid-nineteenth century to the present. Like immigrants elsewhere, Jewish women in California attended schools, worked at least until marriage, and were active in Jewish women’s organizations. Hollywood, however, is another story. Anzia Yezierska became an instant celebrity — the “Immigrant Cinderella” — when she was brought out to turn Hungry Hearts into a movie (she quickly fled), and silent screen star Carmel Myers refused advice to change her name to something not so recognizably Jewish.

Pratt, Norma Fain. “A Working Girl With a Mind of Her Own.” In An Inventory of Promises: Essays on American Jewish History in Honor of Moses Rischin, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock and Marc Lee Raphael, 209-222. Brooklyn, NY: Carlson, 1995.

Rediscovers lost first-generation immigrant Yiddish women writers including “sweatshop poets” Berta Nagle and Dora Mogilanski, whose themes were similar to their male working-class counterparts, and others whose writing centered on the yearnings of the working girl. Publishing in Yiddish newspapers in the first decade of the twentieth century were poet Anna Ziv, novelist Toybe Segal, and short story writers Yente Serdatski, Miriam Karpelov, and Rokl Lurie. These writers touched on important life issues — work, sex, family, education, and justice — as seen from the eye of the working woman and may have contributed to the collective action aimed at bettering working conditions spearheaded by Jewish women not long thereafter.

Quack, Sibylle. “Changing Gender Roles and Emigration: The Example of German Jewish Women and Their Emigration to the United States, 1933-1945. In People in Transition: German Migrations in Comparative Perspective, 1820-1930, ed. Dirk Hoerder and Jörg Nagler, 379-397. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995.

Begins by describing the experiences of German Jewish women before they fled Germany, then discusses their emigration pattern (in fewer numbers than men, in part becuase they delayed leaving in order to tend old or sick relatives or because many worked for Jewish welfare organizations that needed them), followed by a description of what they did once they arrived in the United States. Many accepted positions as domestics, no matter what they had done previously, or in factories, offices, hospitals, or retail shops. On the whole it was easier for German Jewish immigrant women to find jobs than it was for men. In Germany, women were more apt to study languages, and some already knew English. They were also ready to accept anything that would bring in an income, viewing their participation in such jobs or the workforce in general as temporary, while their husbands re-trained, learned English, and secured permanent positions. After the families were well-settled in America, though, not all the women gave up working outside the home. Gender relations were changed, however, even for those who did.

Quint, Ellen Deutsch. “Women in Leadership Roles in Federations: An Historic Review.” Journal of Jewish Communal Service 72, no. 1/2 (Fall/Winter 1995/96): 96-101.

Reviews the progress in involvement of lay and professional women leaders in federations since the early 1970s when the issue was first put on national and local federation agendas. Surveys in 1972 of volunteer decision makers and in 1975 of professional positions found women severely limited in their participation rate. Subsequent surveys noted improvements, due to active steps taken by the federations to make their boards and upper echelon staff positions more inclusive, yet a 1993 survey still found few women at the very top of federations in large cities. Deutsch calls for continued efforts to attract women philanthropists, volunteers, and professional leaders.

Rochlin, Harriet. “Riding High: Annie Oakley’s Jewish Contemporaries: Was the West Liberating for Jewish Women?” Lilith 14 (Fall 1985/Winter 1986): 14-16.

Equivocating on a firm answer to her question, Rochlin offers examples of successful Jewish women pioneers of the West, then asks a series of quantitative, comparative, and Jewish questions awaiting further research.

Rogow, Faith. “Why is This Decade Different From All Other Decades?: A Look at the Rise of Jewish Lesbian Feminism.” Bridges 1, no. 1 (Spring 1990): 67-79.

Explores the hints of Jewish lesbian history present in the lives of early twentieth- century social reformers and labor organizers and the fiction of Jo Sinclair. Traces developments in the 1970s including the founding of gay synagogues, networks of Jewish lesbian consciousness-raising groups, and the rise of a distinctive literature. Finds increased acceptance of gays and lesbians in congregations and rabbinical training in the 1980s, but also considerable remaining homophobia, ignorance, and ignoring of lesbians by the organized American Jewish community. Criticizes Jewish feminist historical scholarship that ignores lesbians.

Sanua, Marianne. “From the Pages of `The Victory Bulletin’: The Syrian Jews of Brooklyn During World War II.” YIVO Annual 19 (1990): 283-330.

The Victory Bulletin was a monthly published during the War by a group of young Syrian Jewish women. Besides keeping Syrian American Jewish soldiers apprised of what was going on in the community, it also advocated changes in women’s roles.

Sarna, Jonathan D. “The Debate Over Mixed Seating in the American Synagogue.” In The American Synagogue: A Sanctuary Transformed, ed. Jack Wertheimer, 363-394,. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1987. Reprinted in The History of Judaism in America: Transplantations, Transformations, and Reconciliations, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 2: 737-768.. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Traces the symbolism of mixed seating from the drive for family togetherness (“family seating”) chiefly in the Reform Movement in mid-to-late nineteenth century, through a measure of women’s equality in the Conservative Movement early in the twentieth century, to the denominational boundary between Orthodox and non-Orthodox Judaism.

Schwartz, Shuly Rubin. “‘We Married What We Wanted To Be’: The Rebbetzin in Twentieth-Century America.” American Jewish History 83 (June 1995): 223- 246.

Using published sources from the Conservative Movement in particular, Schwartz elevates the position of rebbetzin (rabbi’s wife) to one of religious and communal leadership in the days before women could become rabbis.

Seller, Maxine Schwartz. “Defining Socialist Womanhood: The Women’s Page of the Jewish Daily Forward in 1919.” American Jewish History 76, no. 4 (June 1987): 416- 438.

Analyzes the advice given women by socialist newspaper columnists, who favored involvement in unionism, women’s suffrage, and the feminist movement, yet required them to be true to traditional roles of Jewish women in home and family.

Seller, Maxine Schwartz. “Putting Women Into American Jewish History.”Frontiers 5, no. 1 (Spring 1980): 59-62; and variant published as “Reclaiming Jewish Herstory” in Lilith 7 (1980): 23-24.

Written version of presentation made at the 1979 National Women’s Studies Association. Describes issues of content, format, conceptualization, materials, and student reaction addressed by her effort to add women to a survey course on “The American Jewish Experience.”

Seller, Maxine Schwartz. “The Uprising of the Twenty Thousand: Sex, Class, and Ethnicity in the Shirtwaist Makers Strike of 1909.” In Struggle a Hard Battle: Essays on Working Class Immigrants, ed. Dirk Hoerder, 254-279. DeKalb, IL: Northern Illinois University Press, 1986.

After summarizing the working conditions that led to the strike, Sellers discusses how the coincidence of class and ethnicity within the Yiddish-speaking community created the climate in which Jewish women had no conflict becoming union activists. One of the long- term impacts of the strike was that several Jewish women who came to leadership stayed active thereafter in unions, women’s suffrage campaign, and other political work.

Seller, Maxine Schwartz. “World of Our Mothers: The Women’s Page of theJewish Daily Forward.” The Journal of Ethnic Studies 16, no. 2 (Summer 1988): 95- 118. Reprinted in East European Jews in America, 1880-1920: Immigration and Adaptation, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 2: 513-536. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Demonstrates that the Forward‘s women’s page emphasized politics and public affairs, as did the rest of the newspaper, along with Americanization.

Sinkoff, Nancy B. “Educating for `Proper’ Jewish Womanhood: A Case Study in Domesticity and Vocational Training, 1897-1926.” American Jewish History 77, no. 4 (June 1988): 572-599.

German Jewish women associated with the Clara de Hirsch Home for Working Girls in New York City helped train young Eastern European immigrant women for work and domestic life in America. Their attitude was compassionate but patronizing.

Sochen, June. “Happy Endings, Individualism, and Feminism in American Jewish Life.” American Jewish History 81 (Spring/Summer 1994): 340-345.

Included in a thematic issue of American Jewish History devoted to the American dimension of American Jewish history, Sochen speculates on the influence on Judaism of the American regard for individual autonomy and attention to gender. Jewish feminists in her view provide a model of successful integration of Jewish commitment to social justice and American respect for individual rights.

Sochen, June, guest editor. American Jewish History 70, no. 1 (1980).

Thematic issue on American Jewish women’s history, including articles by Deborah Grand Golomb on the 1893 Congress of Jewish Women; the New York City Kosher Meat Boycott of 1902, by Paula Hyman; volunteer activists, by June Sochen; Julia Richman’s work, by Selma Berrol; Yiddish women writers, by Norma Fain Pratt; images of Jewish women in modern American drama, by Ellen Schiff; and Henry Hurwitz’ mother remembered.

Sochen, June. “Some Observations on the Role of the American Jewish Women as Communal Volunteers.” American Jewish History 70, no. 1 (1980): 22-34.

Stresses that insufficient attention has been paid by either the Jewish community or historians to the importance of women volunteers, in particular the “professional board ladies,” who are professional in all senses of the word, except remuneration.

Stern, Norton B. “The Charitable Jewish Ladies of San Bernadino and Their Woman of Valor, Henrietta Ancker.” Western States Jewish Historical Quarterly 13, no. 4 (July 1981): 369-376.

Discusses the Henrietta Hebrew Benevolent Society, founded in 1880, and its original guiding light and namesake, Henrietta Ancker. Says that this is the only instance of a Jewish charitable group in the West being named for a person.

Stern, Norton B. “The Jewish Community of a Nevada Mining Town.”Western States Jewish Historical Quarterly 15, no. 1 (1982): 48-78.

Includes discussion of six Jewish women entrepreneurs who owned grocery stores, a millinery shop, a restaurant, and a boarding house in Eureka Nevada in 1878.

Tenenbaum, Shelly. “The Ways We Were: Buying Chickens, Paying Bills: Jewish Women’s Loan Societies.” Lilith 16, no. 3 (Summer 1991): 32+.

Highlights information about Jewish women borrowers and lenders that is analyzed thoroughly in her A Credit to Their Community: Jewish Loan Societies in the United States, 1880-1945 (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1993).

Toll, William. “The Domestic Basis of Community: Trinidad Colorado’s Jewish Women, 1889-1910.” Rocky Mountain Jewish Historical Notes 8, no. 4 / 9, no. 1 (Summer/Fall 1987). Reprinted in Women, Men and Ethnicity: Essays on the Structure and Thought of American Jewry, by William Toll, 59-70. New York: University Press of America, 1991.

After the founding of the Hebrew Ladies Aid Society in 1899, Trinidad’s women gradually became the organizing force for the Jewish community, raising funds for needy members and others and sponsoring social events.

Toll, William. “The Female Life Cycle and the Measure of Jewish Social Change: Portland, Oregon, 1880-1930.” American Jewish History 72, no. 3 (1983): 309-332. Reprinted in East European Jews in America, 1880-1920: Immigration and Adaptation, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 3: 309-332. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Applies sociological methods to Jewish history. Examines changes in indicators from the life cycle of women, including age at marriage, differential age between wife and husband, number of children, and work history to understand how the Jewish community develops over time. While differences exist between women of German or Eastern European origin, American-born daughters of both groups shared a marked decline in family size and increase in work participation.

Toll, William. “A Quiet Revolution: Jewish Women’s Clubs and the Widening Female Sphere, 1870-1920.” American Jewish Archives 41, no. 1 (Spring/Summer 1989): 7- 26.

How middle-class American Jewish women regarded themselves and their sense of purpose underwent a major shift during this time period. At first Jewish women, like their Protestant counterparts, did “instinctive nurturing” — informal, sisterly work on behalf of needy Jews, as part of their religious obligation. When specialized institutions took over these general benevolent functions, this role faded. By the 1890s they were attempting to better the lives of the less-fortunate Jews and non-Jews by applying principles from the new field of social science. They formed settlement houses and educated themselves to become politically astute, informed advocates for improvements in public health and a variety of social issues.

Umansky, Ellen. “Feminism and American Reform Judaism.” In The Americanization of the Jews, ed. Robert M. Seltzer and Norman J. Cohen, 267-283. New York: New York University Press, 1995.

Discusses why it took Reform Judaism until the late 1960s to decide to ordain women rabbis even though the Movement from its mid-nineteenth century inception espoused an egalitarian philosophy. According to Umansky, the stance was more theoretical than practical. It required impetus from social changes in the 1960s to create a climate of receptivity. Those changes included more Protestant denominations ordaining women, actual qualified women who were considering the rabbinate, a shortage of rabbis in the Movement, and some indication that congregations would be willing to accept women rabbis. While the decision to admit women to rabbinical study was made before the modern women’s movement had gotten off the ground, it subsequently influenced developments in all aspects of Reform Judaism. The nature of the rabbinate and cantorate began to change in response to feminist notions of balance, intimacy, and empowerment. Lay leadership, religious education, liturgy, receptivity to women’s midrashim (textual interpretations), acceptance of patrilineal descent, and endorsement of ordination for gay and lesbian Jews are all attributable in whole or in part to feminism.

Umansky, Ellen M. “Spiritual Expressions: Jewish Women’s Religious Lives in the Twentieth-Century United States.” In Jewish Women in Historical Perspective, ed. Judith R. Baskin, 265-288. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1992.

Examines the nature of Jewish women’s religious lives beyond the study of religious texts and participation in communal worship, which constitute the traditional definition of Judaism. Umansky finds philanthropic and educational endeavors by Jewish women to be steeped in religious values and spiritual meaning. Likewise, literary writers like Elizabeth Stern and Anzia Yezierska evidenced struggles with religious identity, and Josephine Lazarus wrote an explicitly theological tract, Spirit of Judaism (1896). In the 1920s Martha Neumark sought ordination from the Reform movement, arguing that women were in fact better suited for a Reform rabbinate than men, since most of the people attending services were women who could better identify spiritually with a woman rabbi. In the last twenty years women rabbis have added a personal approach to sermons, and many Jewish feminists have created new rituals. These themes are further explored and documented in her Four Centuries of Jewish Women’s Spirituality (with Diane Ashton, Beacon Press, 1992).

Walden, Daniel, ed. Studies in American Jewish Literature, no. 3. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1983.

Entire issue devoted to Jewish women writers and the portrayal of women in American Jewish literature, with contributions by June Sochen (“Identities Within Identity: Thoughts on Jewish American Women Writers”); Norma Fain Pratt (“Anna Margolin’s Lider: A Study in Women’s History, Autobiography, and Poetry”); articles by Susan Kress, Rose Kamel, Ellen Golub, and Susan Hersh Sachs on Anzia Yezierska; considerations of Grace Paley (by Dena Mandel) and Cynthia Ozick (by Deborah Heiligman Weiner); and the image of women in the writings of twentieth-century male Jewish authors.

Watkins, Susan Cotts and Angela D. Danzi. “Women’s Gossip and Social Change: Childbirth and Fertility Control Among Italian and Jewish Women in the United States, 1920-1940.” Gender & Society 9, no. 4 (August 1995): 469-490.

Through interviews with elderly Jewish and Italian women in New York and Philadelphia, Watkins and Danzi find differences in their acceptance of birth control and of hospitals as desired places for births. The authors attribute the variation to differences between Jewish and Italian social networks. Jewish women had a larger and more varied circle with whom to exchange ideas, and the greater number of Jewish medical professionals in their personal networks also influenced their ability to accept new practices. An interesting contribution to the study of ethnic differences in the acceptance of new health care practices that listens carefully to what the women were saying.

“We Honor Our Founding Mothers,” Na’amat Woman 5, no. 4 (September/October 1990): 4-10+ and 5, no. 5 (November/December 1990): 16-20.

In celebration of the sixty-five birthday of Na’amat USA (formerly Pioneer Women), several members offer reminiscences of their mothers who worked tirelessly for the organization. “Pioneer Women/Na’amat USA was her life,” say Edith Gates, daughter of Rose Brooker, but it could have been said about all the women mentioned. They lived in New York, Milwaukee, Sioux City, Iowa, and many other places, but shared a common vision of bettering the lives of women and children in Israel and the United States.

Weinberg, Sydney Stahl. “Jewish Mothers and Immigrant Daughters: Positive and Negative Role Models.” Journal of American Ethnic History 9 (Spring 1987): 39-55. Reprinted in Mothers and Motherhood: Readings in American History, eds. Rima D. Apple and Janet Golden, 334-350, Columbus, OH: Ohio University Press, 1997, and in East European Jews in America, 1880-1920: Immigration and Adaptation, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 2: 559-575. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Immigrant daughters interviewed viewed their mothers as role models in selflessness, as managers of the family, and savvy “powers behind the throne,” who made it appear as if their husbands were making decisions for the family. Most mothers were more accepting of the Americanization of their children than were the fathers, and where family finances permitted, they encouraged their daughters to get an education. A few of the daughters, who associated their mothers with the background they wanted to shed, had more distant relationships with them. These daughters also considered their mothers to be role models, but in a negative way.

Wenger, Beth S. “Jewish Women and Voluntarism: Beyond the Myth of Enablers.” American Jewish History 79, no. 1 (Autumn 1989): 16-36. Reprinted in East European Jews in America, 1880-1920: Immigration and Adaptation, ed. Jeffrey S. Gurock, v. 1: 375-395. New York: Routledge, 1998.

Attributes the persistence of the view of women as only facilitators whose actions empowered others, even after they had become activists in their own right, to the fact that thinking of women as “enablers” meant there was no need to redefine gender roles.

Wenger, Beth S. “Jewish Women of the Club: The Changing Public Role of Atlanta’s Jewish Women (1870-1930).” American Jewish History 76, no 3 (March 1987): 311-333.

Argues that clubs moved Jewish women out of the home and into public life in Jewish institutions and the general community of Atlanta earlier than this happened in Northern communities.

Zandy, Janet. “Our True Legacy: Radical Jewish Women in America.” Lilith14, no. 1 (Winter 1989): 8-13.

Recalls the strikers, union leaders, and women’s rights activists who can serve as models of “applied spirituality and courageous disobedience.”