Feminist Theology and the Jewish Tradition

Melissa Raphael

in The Oxford Handbook of Feminist Theology

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780199273881
Published online January 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Religion and Theology

Feminist Theology and the Jewish Tradition

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Building on the foundations of First Wave Jewish and Christian women's activism, Jewish feminist theology has made a decisive contribution to the post-Holocaust renewal of Jewish thought. Its vision of Israel as an assembly of gendered persons whose ethical relationships with the world and with one another are witness to the love and justice of God has introduced inclusive language into the liturgy, and has expanded the linguistic and imaginal range of Jewish evocations of God. In doing so, Jewish feminist theology has established the theological terms on which to affirm the full humanity of Jewish women as subjects and agents of their own Jewish experience. This chapter begins by outlining the denominational and postdenominational contexts of Jewish feminist theology and assessing its standing in the primarily Anglophone Jewish community in which it has established itself since the second half of the 1970s. It then moves on to examine the ideas and approaches of a number of Jewish feminist theology's key practitioners, and some of the challenges it is likely to face over the coming years.

Keywords: Jewish feminist theology; Israel; Jewish women

Article.  11004 words. 

Subjects: Religion ; Religious Studies ; Philosophy of Religion ; Interfaith Relations

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