Voting Rights

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Stock Photo of "I Voted" Stickers

Voting: Still a Right, Right?

by Emma Nathanson

Typically, walking through the doors of my high school gym brings on a feeling of dread, accompanied by the smell of body odor and wet paint. When I walked into the gym this past November, however, the only thing I felt was excitement. On the day of the 2018 Midterm Elections, I had decided to spend my Tuesday afternoon and evening as an election official, helping voters register, cast ballots, and, most importantly, go home with an “I Voted!” sticker proudly affixed to their shirts.

Women Protest the Dissolution of Bella Abzug's 19th Congressional District, 1972

Channeling Bella and Challenging Power

by Rachael Dubinsky

Women are strong leaders because we understand how deeply intertwined policy is with our everyday lives. Labeled a “passionate perfectionist,” Abzug refused to separate idealism from activism.

Pauline Steinem Letter 1 (1910)

I Learned it in the Archives: Women’s Rights Activism Runs in Steinem Family

by Lisa Rickey

The letterhead listed the names of all the officers, and one name in particular caught my attention. The woman’s name was Pauline Steinem.

Emily Axelrod at L'Taken

Stirred and Spurred to Action

by Emily Axelrod

Judaism never seemed to offer anything that stoked my social justice fire. I didn’t hear many calls to action in services; partly because I wasn’t looking, and partly because services felt mundane to me.

Trans Equality Cover Image

As a Jewish Feminist, I stand for Trans Rights

by Mimi Micner

As a Jewish feminist, I have a particular obligation to fight alongside my transgender siblings as their rights are threatened at the state and national level.

Rita Schwerner

When her husband was murdered during Freedom Summer in 1964 in Mississippi, Rita Levant Schwerner Bender used the ensuing media attention to focus the public’s awareness on the importance of civil rights.
Parade of Suffragists, July 4, 1910

The Five Jewish Disruptive Patriots You Should Know

by Emily Cataneo

Let’s be honest: the Fourth of July is a fun holiday, what with the hamburgers, the watermelons, the fireworks, and the summer camps, but I’m guessing that many of us are not super enthused about celebrating the land of the free and the home of the brave this year, given the current garbage fire of American politics and the dark truths that said garbage fire has revealed about the priorities and mores of our nation.

Anita Pollitzer (cropped)

Looking Back to the Future

by Eden Olsberg

But I don’t want to be silent. After all, it’s not silent women who get stuff done, it’s an explosion of nasty women. So, in thinking about how to move forward and stand my ground, I look to the past. I look to a woman who got stuff done. I look to Anita Pollitzer.

Sing a New Song: Jews, Music, and the Civil Rights Movement

Using the letter of a Jewish civil rights activist and several freedom songs, explore how music is able to cross racial and religious boundaries and build community.

Ida Ginsburg

Despite her short life, suffragist Ida Ginsburg made an impact on her community as founding president of the Jewish Women’s Club of Temple Beth El, which became the Detroit chapter of the National Council of Jewish Women.
Maud Nathan, 1913, cropped

Icons for the New Year: Maud Nathan

by Tara Metal

In Maud Nathan’s second life as an activist, she became president of the New York Consumers League, vice president of the Woman’s Municipal League of New York, and chair of the industrial committee of the General Federation of Women’s Clubs. Her husband, once her companion at parties and fundraisers, began marching beside her at suffrage parades.

Taxation Postcard from the Ann Lewis Collection

This Women’s Equality Day, Let’s Celebrate the Women Who Got Us Here

by Tara Metal

As we approach yet another election year, American voters may be drawing nearer to an enormous landmark: electing a woman president. With Hillary Rodham Clinton polling as the top Democratic contender, it’s never felt more possible.

Ida Dehmel

Deeply enmeshed in German cultural life as a writer, salon hostess, and women’s rights activist, Ida Coblenz Dehmel found herself squeezed out of the very communities she had helped shape when the Nazis came to power.

Florence Schornstein

As director of New Orleans’s Parks and Parkways Department, Florence Shornstein mobilized the community to replant the lush greenery that helped define the city.

Sara Azaryahu

In hopes of creating a place where neither her religion nor her gender would make her a second-class citizen, Sara Azaryahu dedicated herself to founding a Jewish state, but was disappointed by the sexism that remained in her society.

Edith Rosewald Stern

Edith Rosenwald Stern didn’t just commit herself to civil rights causes, she encouraged others to contribute by creating challenge grants to match donations.

Maggie Gyllenhaal

Actress Maggie Gyllenhaal has garnered critical acclaim for her performance in difficult roles in 2002’s Secretary, 2009’s Crazy Heart, and 2014’s The Honourable Woman.

Lani Guinier

Lani Guinier’s groundbreaking work in law and civil rights theory led to her becoming the first woman of color granted tenure at Harvard Law School.

Sylvia Bernstein Seaman

Sylvia Bernstein Seaman fought for women’s suffrage as a teenager, then became an important voice for second wave feminism as the first person outside the medical profession to write about breast cancer.

Anita Pollitzer

As a party organizer for the National Woman’s Party, Anita Pollitzer travelled across the country to earn crucial support for ratifying the Nineteenth Amendment.

Maud Nathan

After her daughter’s death, Maud Nathan battled grief by throwing herself into social justice work, transforming herself from a simple society wife to influential social reformer.

Pearl Bernstein Max

Pearl Bernstein Max directed the staggering work of fusing four different colleges—City, Hunter, Brooklyn, and Queens—into the City University of New York.

Anna Margolin

Under the name Anna Margolin, Rosa Lebensboim wrote what critics called some of the finest Yiddish poetry of the earliest twentieth century.

Clara Lipman

Clara Lipman based her long and successful career as an actress and playwright on her ingénue performances and her gift for light comedy.

Ruth Lewinson

Ruth Lewinson, one of the first female Jewish lawyers in America, both worked in private practice and gave public lectures on practical law to help people better navigate the legal system.
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