Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

History of Gender Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 1 - 15 of 15

Full-Text Articles in History of Gender

'My Happiness Overturned': Mourning, Memory And A Woman's Writing, Rachel Greenblatt Aug 2011

'My Happiness Overturned': Mourning, Memory And A Woman's Writing, Rachel Greenblatt

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

In the late seventeenth century, Beila Perlhefter mourned her seven children in the introduction she wrote to a Yiddish ethical work written (at her urging, she tells her readers) by her husband, Ber. While the autobiographical information provided in the introduction is sparse indeed, it shares certain generic characteristics with other self-writing by early modern Jews from Prague, including Yom-Tov Lipmann Heller's "Megillat eivah." At the same time, each voice is a different voice, all the more so the rare instance of a woman's voice, and this short piece defies easy categorization.

This presentation is for the following ...


The Zaks Parokhet From Prague (1602): Sacred Object, Local Liturgy, And Familial Memory, Rachel Greenblatt Aug 2007

The Zaks Parokhet From Prague (1602): Sacred Object, Local Liturgy, And Familial Memory, Rachel Greenblatt

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

The Zaks parokhet, donated to Prague’s Altneuschul by Nathan, known as Karpel Zaks and his wife Hadasi in 1602, provides a framework through which to view the intersection of liturgy, memory and material culture in one early modern Jewish community. The parokhet’s role as a memorial to its donor is not apparent, however, by examining the object in isolation. In seeking to understand this Torah curtain’s meaning for its donor and the worshippers who used it, I consider its graphic and material design, contemporaneous texts and additional ceremonial objects from Prague and its environs, with particular concern ...


A Challenge To Sexual And Marital Propriety And Communal Reaction, Kenneth Stow Aug 2006

A Challenge To Sexual And Marital Propriety And Communal Reaction, Kenneth Stow

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

The selection of sources from the early 1550's Rome deal with the question of honor of young women and their fathers.

The Jewish Community of Rome was unimpressed. It wanted it made clear that one did not make accusations that could harm the well-being, in fact, mostly financial, but also the honor, of young women. Indeed, the bride Ricca was herself awarded what amounted to a hefty fine; we know that among Christians, it was the father’s honor that was considered impugned, and any monetary sanctions would go to him. Not here.

Finally, we learn something about sacred ...


Two Cases Of Apostasy In Dubno In 1716 Jews, Christians, And Family Life, Magda Teter Aug 2006

Two Cases Of Apostasy In Dubno In 1716 Jews, Christians, And Family Life, Magda Teter

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

This text relates a trial of two Christian women who accepted to Judaism that took place in the city of Dubno in eastern Poland in 1716. The text presented here comes from a collection of primary sources published in Kiev [now Kyiv] in 1869, as part of effort by scholars at the time to collect and publish primary source materials about Ukraine. The collection is called Arkhiv Iugo-zapadnoi Rossii, or The Archive of South-Western Russia, and contains documents from the South-Western part of Ukraine.

This presentation is for the following text(s):


Juveniles In Early Modern Jewish-Italian Communities Between Family Control And Kabbalistic Piety, Roni Weinstein Aug 2006

Juveniles In Early Modern Jewish-Italian Communities Between Family Control And Kabbalistic Piety, Roni Weinstein

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

The presentation discusses conceptions of childhood, youth, and marriage in Italian Jewish Culture.

The text reproduced is an excerpt from a mid-seventeenth century work by Pinhas Baruch Monselice.

Click here to view a video


The Role Of Marriage And Marital Sexuality In Lurianic Kabbalah, Lawrence Fine Aug 2006

The Role Of Marriage And Marital Sexuality In Lurianic Kabbalah, Lawrence Fine

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

The presentation situates the development of Lurianic Kabbalah in its context of sixteenth-century Safed. Focusing on two texts by Hayyim Vital, Lawrence Fine discusses sexuality and marital relations in Lurianic Kabbalah and among the Kabbalists themselves.

This presentation is for the following text(s):

  • Ta'amei Mitsvot, Parshat Bereshit (Reasons for the Commandments concerning “Be Fruitful and Multiply”) by Hayim Vital (1570s)
  • Sha'ar Kavvanot (The Gate of [Contemplative] Intentions, Concerning Sabbath Eve) by Hayim Vital (1570s)

Click here to view the video


“The First Duty Of Nature Is To Preserve Life” A Jewish Woman’S Plea For Divorce In Late 18th-Century Trieste, Lois Dubin Aug 2006

“The First Duty Of Nature Is To Preserve Life” A Jewish Woman’S Plea For Divorce In Late 18th-Century Trieste, Lois Dubin

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

The presentation discusses a letter from Relle [Rachele] Morschene (1770-1844) of Trieste to Chief Rabbi Raffael Natan Tedesco, written in the throes of her three-year long effort to extricate herself from her marriage to husband Lucio Luzzatto (1755-1801). From 1793 to 1796, Morschene pursued separation and civil divorce through the Habsburg courts at the same time as a Jewish religious divorce. Indeed, she was one of the first European Jewish women to seek and obtain a civil divorce. Her legal situation was novel because Jews in the Habsburg Monarchy were among the first to be subjected to civil marriage regulation ...


The Woodstruck Deed The Documentation Of Accidental Defloration Among The Jews Of Early Modern Italy, David Malkiel Aug 2006

The Woodstruck Deed The Documentation Of Accidental Defloration Among The Jews Of Early Modern Italy, David Malkiel

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

The “woodstruck” (mukat ets) deed, a Hebrew document that officially records the accidental defloration of a young girl, appears in sixteenth-century Italy, in a block of deeds recorded by Jewish notaries in Rome, in a rabbinic responsum and in the record book of the Padua community. Prior to that, there is no record of such an instrument anywhere in Jewish history and literature, despite the fact that the frequency of accidental defloration must have been a constant. Moreover, the registers of the Jewish notaries of sixteenth-century Rome contain over a hundred such deeds for the sixteenth century alone. The appearance ...


Jewish Women And Economic Encounters With Christians, Debra Kaplan Aug 2006

Jewish Women And Economic Encounters With Christians, Debra Kaplan

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

R. Yair Hayyim ben Moses Samson Bacharach (1638-1702) is well-known for his knowledge of halakha and Kabbalah. Over the course of his lifetime, he served as the rabbi in several locations in the Holy Roman Empire. In these two responsa, Bacharach deals with one of the halakhic problems surrounding women’s trade with non-Jews. Such trade inevitably caused women to enter into seclusion (yihud) with non-Jews, especially since according to Jewish law, the presence of the non-Jew’s wife did not alleviate the prohibition of seclusion with a non-Jew.

This presentation is for the following text(s):


Unequal Opportunities The Economic Possibilities Open To Jewish Women In 18th Century Poland-Lithuania, Adam Teller Aug 2006

Unequal Opportunities The Economic Possibilities Open To Jewish Women In 18th Century Poland-Lithuania, Adam Teller

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

The following texts present an image of economic opportunities, and gender roles in Jewish society in eastern Europe. The first text is an 18th-century supplication by a Jew, Bunim Szlomowicz, against his wife; the second is a 1751 decree by the Council of Lithuania regulating women's roles in trade.


Marriage And Networkbuilding, Claudia Ulbrich Aug 2006

Marriage And Networkbuilding, Claudia Ulbrich

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

In eastern France Jewish marriages are well documented in the eighteenth century. Following a decree by Louis XIV in 1701 that Jewish marriage contracts had to be deposited with notaries within 15 days of marriage, these documents were registered with increasing frequency in the entire French-German region. Registration became generally obligatory in that time, so that we have large amounts of documents both for Christian as for Jews. Historians have never fully analyzed these files. Jean Fleury, who was prompted by genealogical interests, surveyed the 8500 items in the Metz archive, and compiled 2021 marriage contracts from the seventeenth and ...


Pinkas Shamash Altona (1766-1767), Elisheva Carlebach Aug 2006

Pinkas Shamash Altona (1766-1767), Elisheva Carlebach

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

Elisheva Carlebach's presentation discusses excerpts from the Pinkas Shamash Altona, providing a glimpse on an aspect of Jewish life that usually remained obscured--illegitimate children born to Jewish domestic servants, and the servants themselves, held very marginal status in the community. One of the pertinent issue was death. If they died the responsibility for buying them was contested between many different parties.

This presentation is for the following text(s):

Click here for a video presentation.


Jewish Marriage In Christian Eyes, Yaacov Deutsch Aug 2006

Jewish Marriage In Christian Eyes, Yaacov Deutsch

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

This presentation deals with a Christian description of early modern Jewish marriage rituals. The text is a translation of a chapter on Jewish marriage from Johannes Buxtorf's "Synagoga Judaica" or "Jewish Synagogue" (1603).

This presentation is for the following text(s):


Ordering Early Modern Marriage, Elisheva Baumgarten Aug 2006

Ordering Early Modern Marriage, Elisheva Baumgarten

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

In this presentation, Elisheva Baumgarten discusses marriage rituals as recorded by a seventeenth-century Jewish author of a book of customs (sefer minhagim), which became popular in the early modern period. Baumgarten compares Yuspa of Worms' work with materials from the medieval period. She also places Jewish marriage rituals within the context of non-Jewish cultures of the time.

This presentation is for the following text(s):

  • The Custom book of R. Juspa of Worms (17th century)

Click here to view the video


Emw 2006: Gender, Family, And Social Structures, Emw 2006 Aug 2006

Emw 2006: Gender, Family, And Social Structures, Emw 2006

Early Modern Workshop: Resources in Jewish History

The 2006 Early Modern Workshop on the topic of “Gender, Family, and Social Structures” addressed a spectrum of topics about the transformation of the concept and form of family in general, and of Jewish family in particular in the early modern period.

The workshop took up questions of: marriage rituals, as represented by early modern (Elisheva Baumgarten) and Christians (Jacob Deutsch), and marriage contracts (Ruth Lamdan), responsibilities of the Jewish community to women and out-of-wedlock children (Elisheva Carlebach), challenges to marriage and marital propriety (Debra Kaplan on rabbinic responses to Jewish women’s encounters with Christian men; David Malkiel and ...