America’s Jewish Women: A History from Colonial Times to Today

America’s Jewish Women uncovers what it has meant to be a Jewish woman in America by weaving together the stories of remarkable individuals—from the colonial matron Grace Nathan and her great-granddaughter, the poet Emma Lazarus, to labor activist Bessie Hillman and Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  In this groundbreaking history, we see how they and the scores of women—the wives, mothers, activists, and workers who appear in these pages—maintained their Jewish identities as they wrote themselves into American history.  Defined by a strong sense of self, a resolute commitment to making the world a better place, and diverse notions of what being a Jew means, America’s Jewish women left deep imprints on their families, communities and the nation they call home.

  • Table of Contents
  • Introduction
  • Prologue
  • Chapter One: “Many are the blessings I partake of”: America’s Early Jewish Women
  • Chapter Two: “Mothers in Israel”: The American Jewesses
  • Chapter Three: “A new kind of Jewess”: Eastern European Jewish Women in America
  • Chapter Four: “Woman is looking around and ahead”: Wider Worlds
  • Chapter Five: “Down from the pedestal . . . up from the laundry room”: Into the Future
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Women Who Would Be Rabbis: A History of Women’s Ordination, 1889–1985

Conservative Judaism in America: A Biographical Dictionary and Sourcebook

From 1889, when Mary M. Cohen asked why can’t women be rabbis, to acrimonious debates in Orthodox Judaism on the question, this history uncovers the backstory of women’s long road to rabbinic ordination.  A finalist for a National Jewish Book Award and a main selection of the Jewish Book Club. Documenting the lives and careers of the most important leaders in Conservative Judaism’s first century, this invaluable reference work provides a history of the movement and its central institutions.
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Women and American Judaism: Historical Perspectives

American Jewish Women’s History: A Reader

Leading scholars find women shaping American Judaism from colonial days to the present in their homes, synagogues, and the public eye. (Co-editor)
Emphasizing the diversity and complexity of American Jewish women, this reader collects landmark essays, written by the first generation of scholars of Jewish women’s and gender history. (Editor)
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Making Women’s Histories: Beyond National Perspectives

New Essays in American Jewish History

Contributors cover the emergence of the writing of women’s histories in places like Tsarist Russia, the British Empire in Egypt and India, Qing-dynasty China, and the U.S. roiling through the 1960s and envision their futures. (Co-editor) The chapters pointing to new directions in the writing of American Jewish history include my “Yentl: From Yeshiva Boy to Syndrome.” (Co-editor and contributor)
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Three Hundred and Fifty Years: An Album of Jewish Memory

This beautifully illustrated book, commissioned for the 350th anniversary of Jewish life in America, highlights historic moments from the 1654 landing in New Amsterdam of the first Jewish community to twenty-first century presidential campaign buttons in English and Hebrew. (Co-author)