Category Archives: Feminism and Religion

A Feminist Reflects on Yom Kippur

From author Elana Maryles Sztokman over at The Jewish Week: Yom Kippur asks us to forgive, but this a challenge for me because I think forgiving can be much harder than asking for forgiveness — especially if we are expected … Continue reading

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“Sexism is a Sin. Happy New Year 5764″

Over at Jewish Women Watching: In these days of repentance, ask yourself: Is the leader of my organization a man? Is the board of my organization more than 50% men? Is my rabbi a man? Why? Plus feminist Rosh Hashana … Continue reading

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TED Talk by Karima Bennoune Nearing One Million Views

Professor Karima Bennoune’s powerful and inspiring TED Talk® When people of Muslim heritage challenge fundamentalism, posted online this summer, is already nearing one million views.  From the TED site (emphasis added): Karima Bennoune shares four powerful stories of real people fighting … Continue reading

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Formal Equality on Yom Kippur

Writing the Jewish Women’s Archive (here), student Dina Lamdany has these reflections on the “gender-neutral” quality of Yom Kippur: The morning Torah reading is about the Kohen Gadol’s (high priest) Yom Kippur service in the temple, and the afternoon reading … Continue reading

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Israel Faces a New Front of Segregation

Two female soldiers were recently punished because one was braiding the other’s hair outside of the tent. A religious soldier complained that this was an immodest behavior, and the two were disciplined. The public uproar made the military reverse their … Continue reading

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Sepper on “Doctoring Discrimination in the Same-Sex Marriage Debates”

Elizabeth Sepper (Washington University St. Louis) has posted to SSRN her working paper Doctoring Discrimination in the Same-Sex Marriage Debates,  Indiana L.J. (forthcoming 2014).  Here is the abstract: As an increasing number of state legislatures legalize same-sex marriage, some religious … Continue reading

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CFP: Gendered Rites/Gendered Rights: Sex Segregation, Religious Practice, and Public Live

From colleagues at Brandeis, this CFP: GENDERED RITES/GENDERED RIGHTS: Sex Segregation, Religious Practice, and Public Life Call for Papers The Hadassah-Brandeis Institute Project on Gender, Culture, Religion, and the Law seeks paper proposals for an international conference entitled Gendered Rites/Gendered … Continue reading

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Dr. Kelly Brown Douglas, “Black Bodies and the Black Church: A Blues Slant”

From Palgrave, this new book by Dr. Kelly Brown Douglas (Religion, Goucher College): Black Bodies and the Black Church: A Blues Slant.  Here’s is the publisher’s description: There is a problem in the black church. It is a problem with … Continue reading

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“Why it is important to integrate human rights into international policy-making”

From Equality Now: The Liberian President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, has just returned from a business trip to Britain, where she met President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono of Indonesia and UK Prime Minister David Cameron.  In Liberia, more than 58% of women … Continue reading

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Posted in Acts of Violence, Feminism and Law, Feminism and Medicine, Feminism and Politics, Feminism and Religion, Sisters In Other Nations | Comments Off

Iranian Women Now Barred From Numerous College Majors Including Engineering, Nuclear Physics, Computer Science, English Literature, Archaeology and Business.

From the BBC News: More than 30 universities have introduced new rules banning female students from almost 80 different degree courses. These include a bewildering variety of subjects from engineering, nuclear physics and computer science, to English literature, archaeology and … Continue reading

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Gender, Religion and Military Service in Israel

If this topic is of interest, read “What Happens When the Two Israels Meet,” an Op-Ed by Shani Boianjiu in the NYT.

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Sisters Speaking Out, Nuns on the Bus

From the AP: The accompanying news story (here) explains: A group of Roman Catholic nuns began a nine-state bus tour protesting proposed federal budget cuts Monday, saying they weren’t trying to flout recent Vatican criticisms of socially active nuns but … Continue reading

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American Nuns Tell the Vatican, “We Don’t Need Your Stinkin’ Bishops”

From Reuters (here): The largest organization of U.S. Catholic nuns on Friday rejected a Vatican assessment that they had fallen under the sway of radical feminism and needed to hand control of their group over to a trio of bishops. … Continue reading

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Posted in Feminism and Religion | 1 Comment

Inniss on “Bridging the Great Divide”

Lolita Buckner Inniss has published Bridging the Great Divide–A Response to Linda Greenhouse and Reva B. Siegel’s Before (and After) Roe v. Wade: New Questions About Backlash, 89 Wash. U. L. Rev. 963 (2012).  Here is the abstract: This essay … Continue reading

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Ashe on “Women’s Wrongs, Religions’ Rights”

Marie Ashe (Suffolk) has posted to SSRN her article Women’s Wrongs, Religions’ Rights: Women, Free Exercise, and Establishment in American Law, 21 Temple Political & Civil Rights Law Review 163 (Fall 2011).  Here is the abstract: This article provides an … Continue reading

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Corbin on “Expanding the Bob Jones Compromise”

Caroline Mala Corbin (Miami) has posted to SSRN her chapter “Expanding the Bob Jones Compromise,” which will appear in the forthcoming Cambridge U Press book edited by Austin Sarat, Matters of Faith: Religious Experiences and Legal Responses in the United … Continue reading

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“How Can There Be Too Much Focus on Poverty and Injustice?”

A reader of the NY Times sent in this letter to the paper after reading about the Vatican’s condemnation (see here) of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, the largest organization of U.S. nuns: I am a lifelong Catholic, 80-plus … Continue reading

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Feminist Law Profs Interview with Sara McDougall

I recently spoke with Sara McDougall (History, John Jay College) about Professor McDougall’s book Bigamy and Christian Identity in Late Medieval Champagne (Penn Press 2012), previously blogged here, as well as Professor McDougall’s other work. Crawford Question: In the church … Continue reading

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McDougall, “Bigamy and Christian Identity in Late Medieval Champagne”

Sara McDougall (History, John Jay College) has published Bigamy and Christian Identity in Late Medieval Champagne (Penn Press 2012).  Here is the publisher’s description: The institution of marriage is commonly thought to have fallen into crisis in late medieval northern … Continue reading

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Rush Finally Apologizes (Sort Of)

Rush Limbaugh has apologized (in his way) for comments about Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke (whom he called Susan and identified as a college coed). Here is his statement, posted to his show’s website. Ms. Fluke recently testified as at … Continue reading

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Posted in Activism, Feminism and Law, Feminism and Politics, Feminism and Religion, Law Schools | Comments Off

Announcing Two New Issues of “Women in Judaism”

From the FLP mailbox, this notice of two new issues of the interdisciplinary journal Women in Judaism: Vol. 8:1 features: Articles Voicing a New Midrash: Women’s Holocaust Writing as Jewish Feminist Response Deidre Butler Reading Jewish Identity, Spiritual Alienation, and … Continue reading

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When Mary Saw Two Pink Lines

Via The (UK) Telegraph, this story of vandalism to a billboard outside an Anglican church in Auckland, New Zealand: A scissor-wielding protester has destroyed a controversial billboard of the Virgin Mary, just days after it went up outside a New … Continue reading

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Remembering Paula E. Hyman, 1946-2011

Over at the Jewish Daily Forward, Deborah Dash Moore writes a moving remembrance of historian Paula Hyman, who died today.  Professor Hyman was the Lucy G. Moses Professor of Modern Jewish History at Yale University and the author of The Jewish … Continue reading

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Posted in Deaths, Feminism and Religion, Firsts | Comments Off

A Feminist on Yom Kippur

Writing for Sh’ma (here) in 2005, Martha Ackelsberg (Political Science, Smith College) asked, “How Can a Feminist Like Me Enjoy a Liturgy Like This?” My secret is now out: I actually enjoy the Yom Kippur Avodah Service. How can this … Continue reading

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Corbin on “The Irony of Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church & School v. EEOC”

Caroline Mala Corin (Miami) has posted to SSRN her piece forthcoming in the Northwestern University Law Review Colloquy, “The Irony of Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church & School v. EEOC.”  Here is the abstract: The question presented in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran … Continue reading

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Request for Signatories to Amicus Brief in Hosana-Tabor Case (First Amendment, Employment Discrimination and Gender Issues)

We have drafted an amicus brief for law professors in the Hosanna-Tabor case, which involves a ministerial exception to employment laws and has important implications for gender discrimination. Cheryl Perich was a kindergarten and fourth grade teacher at Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical … Continue reading

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“There’s a gigantic universe beyond South Carolina, and while you probably won’t ever visit a distant star or go inside a cell, there are instruments we can use to see farther and deeper than your eyes can go, and there are books that describe all kinds of wonders. Don’t close yourself off to them simply because you weren’t there.”

The above title is an excerpt from this post.

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Erasing Women (or, Where Are the Women? Der Tzitung edition)

You may have already read about the newspaper Der Tzitung, which excised Hillary Clinton and Audrey Tomason from a White House photograph because of a religious aversion to printing photographs of women. The paper apologized “if this was seen as … Continue reading

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Posted in Feminism and Religion, Sexism in the Media | Comments Off

Leslie Griffin on Religion, Free Exercise and Women’s Equality

Leslie C. Griffin (Houston) has posted to SSRN her essay Smith and Women’s Equality, 32 Cardozo L. Rev. __ (forthcoming 2011).   Here is the abstract: This essay was part of a Cardozo symposium celebrating the twentieth anniversary of the landmark … Continue reading

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What’s on Your (Seder) Plate?

Even Time magazine is hip to the orange on the seder plate: Some may consider the orange a symbol of women’s rights, derived from a man supposedly telling Professor Susannah Heschel that “a woman belongs on the bimah [in a … Continue reading

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Corbin on “Nonbelievers and Government Religious Speech”

Caroline Mala Corbin (Miami) has posted to SSRN her article Nonbelievers and Government Religious Speech, 97 Iowa L. Rev. __ (2011).  Here is the abstract: In the past few years, nonbelievers have become much more prominent in the United States. … Continue reading

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Ninth Circuit Allows Muslim Woman To Sue County Under RLUIPA

Reversing a lower court deciion, the Ninth Circuit has ruled that a Muslim woman who was forced to remove her headscarf while in detention in a California facility has stated a claim under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons … Continue reading

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Posted in Feminism and Religion, If you're a woman | Comments Off

Whalen Films, “A Question of Habit”

This short film is narrated by Susan Sarandon and is about women religious in the United States.  Here’s the description from the film’s website: In the February 23, 2008 episode of Saturday Night Live, Tina Fey made a seemingly serious … Continue reading

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Posted in Feminism and Religion | 1 Comment

“Women of Faith”: Documentary Film on Women in the Catholic Church

Rebecca Alvin (Cape Cod Community College) has made a documentary film, “Women of Faith”, about women and the Catholic Church.  Here is the description from the film’s distributor, Women Make Movies: This absorbing documentary examines women’s decisions to lead religious lives … Continue reading

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Posted in Feminism and Religion | 1 Comment

The Law of Forgiveness

Last week’s Chronicle includes an article (here) about a rising subdiscipline in “forgiveness studies.” In Turning the Other Cheek, a Growing Scholarly Discipline, Tom Bartlett reports on several academic studies of forgiveness: At the time [of his mother's murder], [Mr. Worthington Everett … Continue reading

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Nothing Quite Like the Force that is a Stereotype

This postcard was on every seat when a colleague arrived at her local synagogue for Rosh Hashanah services.  (I have redacted the name of the congregation.)  My colleague was irate, and asked others sitting around her whether they, too, found … Continue reading

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Request for Law Prof Pledges of Support for Park51 Project (aka “Ground Zero” “Mosque”)

From law professors Susan P. Koniak (Boston University), George M. Cohen (Virginia) and David A. Dana (Northwestern): This is not a request to sign a joint letter. We thought, as a community, we could raise our voices instead by pledging financial support … Continue reading

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Mayor Bloomberg on Tolerance

The proposed construction of a Muslim community center and mosque in Lower Manhattan has received national media attention.  Earlier this week, Mayor Michael Bloomberg made a tremendous plea for tolerance.  It is one of the best political speeches I have … Continue reading

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Posted in Feminism and Religion | 1 Comment

Where Are The Women? The Catholic University of America and its Law School’s Center for Law, Philosophy and Culture is hosting a womenless symposium on”The Nature of Judicial Duty: A Reflection on Philip Hamburger’s Law and Judicial Duty”on April 8-9, 2010.

The Symposium’s home page is here. The listed speakers include: Philip Hamburger (keynote), Richard A. Epstein, Emilio M. Garza, R.H. Helmholz, H. Jefferson Powell, Lloyd L. Weinreb and Michael P. Zuckert. –Ann Bartow

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Posted in Courts and the Judiciary, Feminism and Religion, The Overrepresentation of Men, The Underrepresentation of Women, Where are the Women? | Comments Off

Why a Women’s Seder?

Why a women’s seder?  Here’s how Rabbi Susan Fendrick explains (here): To read the biblical story of the Exodus with open eyes is to understand Passover as, among other things, a celebration of women’s heroism. But in the traditional haggadah, … Continue reading

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Posted in Feminism and Religion | 1 Comment

New Law Blog on Religion and the First Amendment!

Leslie Griffiths (Houston) just started a blog on religion and the first amendment. Check it out here:   http://www.religionrogue.blogspot.com/

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Mr. Deity and the Help-Meet, Or, Explaining the Politics of Housework In Three and a Half Minutes

I’ve discovered “Mr Deity and the Help Meet,”  in which Lucy (aka Lucifer) takes Mr. Deity to task 3 days before the Creation for changing male and female roles (and the balance of power).  Giving birth? Breast feeding? The women … Continue reading

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Posted in Academia, Feminism and Culture, Feminism and Religion, It's satire, in case that requires pointing out | Comments Off

Fuchs on Sephardic Attitudes to Women’s Torah Studies

Ilan Fuchs (Schusterman Visiting Israeli Professor, Tulane; Bar Ilan University) has posted to SSRN his paper,  “‘Sephardic’ Halakhah? The Attitude of Sephardic Decisors to Women’s Torah Study: A Test Case”.   Here is the abstract: This paper examines Sephardic rabbinic … Continue reading

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Caroline Mala Corbin, “Ceremonial Deism and the Reasonable Religious Outsider”

Abstract: State invocations of God are common in the United States; indeed, the national motto is”In God We Trust.”Yet the Establishment Clause forbids the state from favoring some religions over others. Nonetheless, courts have found the national motto and other … Continue reading

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Posted in Academia, Feminism and Religion, Feminist Legal Scholarship | 1 Comment

“Religion and Women”

In this column Nicholas Kristof briefly discusses intersections of gender and religion. It made me think back to this Pandagon post and the associated comments thread. Generalizing about “religion” is deeply problematic. –Ann Bartow

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Death of Theologian Mary Daly

From the National Catholic Reporter: Mary Daly, radical feminist theologian and a mother of modern feminist theology, died Jan. 3 at the age of 81. She was one of the most influential voices of the radical feminist movement through the … Continue reading

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Posted in Feminism and Religion | 2 Comments

CFP: “What Pertains to a Man”? Transcending Gender Boundaries in Jewish and Israeli Law

Call for Papers “What Pertains To a Man”? Transcending Gender Boundaries in Jewish and Israeli Law Conference to be held at the University of Chicago Law School Monday March 1, 2010 This small one day conference will be structured around … Continue reading

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Women in the Hanukkah Story: Not Just Judith Anymore

In this month’s Hadassah magazine, a story about a Modi’in,   Israel educator who has added a female role to his dramatic interpretation of the Hanukkah tale of Judah the Maccabee who led the Hasmonean people in defying Syrian Greek … Continue reading

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Chris Matthews Takes on Abortion and the Catholic Church

Chris Matthews does a great job skewering the Rhode Island bishop who denied Patrick Kennedy communion. With apologies for linking to the videos as posted by Americans United for Life (it was the only version I could figure out to … Continue reading

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Posted in Bloggenpheffer, Feminism and Religion | 3 Comments