Beit Midrash

Will Women-Only Torah Study Soon Become Old-School?

The most remarkable aspect of the first full-time co-ed learning program just ending at the Drisha Institute for Jewish Education, a pioneer in advanced Torah study for women, is how unremarkable it felt.

I visited the experimental program for college and graduate students spending the month of June in a “student immersion program” that combined Talmud and philosophy in examining “the relationship between spirituality and community involvement and action,” according to the program description.

A YouTube Haggadah

Skirball project combines 14 short artistic videos
for each section of the seder.

Staff Writer

An older man sits in his living room armchair, relaxing in striped button-down pajamas while crunching loudly on a raw root vegetable.

“Daddy, what are you eating?” asks his son, sitting on the sofa across from him, clad only in boxer shorts. 

“Horseradish,” the balding father responds in a thick Israeli accent, shaking his right forefinger.

“Raw horseradish? Are you crazy? Uch. How can you eat that — it’s so bitter!”

Artists are hoping people will incorporate videos like “Maror,” above, into their seders.

‘Our Battles Have Caught On’

Israel Correspondent

Jerusalem — What do Israelis make of the crisis over conversions that has bitterly divided American Jews? While many are still unaware of the Reform and Conservative movements and what they stand for, there are indications that the issue, which has simmered for about a year, is finally making an impact here.

The media this week devoted more attention than ever to the issue. The mass-circulation dailies, which rarely referred to the conversion crisis, have been brimming with articles on the so-called “conversion bill crisis” for several months now.

Not Your Typical Beit Midrash

Staff Writer
Jerusalem — Nine students are sitting around a table in a sunny classroom near the Old City, studying verses from the Midrash. Their bearded teacher, a knit kipa on his head, leads them in a discussion of the passage’s biblical roots and some possible interpretations. Sounds like a typical yeshiva scene. But most of the students are wearing blue jeans. The class includes bareheaded men — and several women. Not a typical yeshiva scene.
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