Category Archives: feminism

Remind me not to do interviews, someone

I’m not going to link to the latest one, it’s just embarrassing. But. I am the only soferet in Canada at the moment, yes, as far as I know. But only because the other Canadian sofrot are expatriate or dead. I am not proud of being the only soferet in Canada, okay? And I told […]

NY Times article

My protege Linda features in the NY Times: First, the synagogue sought out a female scribe, still a rarity in the Jewish world, in which the traditional understanding of Jewish law is that only devout Jewish men are allowed to be Torah scribes. Then, they decided to try to turn the idea of dedicating a […]

Hooray scribal colleagues

Go Linda!

Mazel tov Hanna

Dear everyone, Thanks for all the emails. No-one else needs to send me the article about Hanna, okay? Yes I know her, yes I’ve seen the article(s), we’re good. Hanna recently started her first complete sefer Torah; she works in Israel, which makes her braver than me, given how hard it is in Israel for […]

Computer Engineer Tefillin Barbie

The original Tefillin Barbie was a 2006 model with a long denim skirt.* She’s getting increasingly difficult to find, but people are still buying Tefillin Barbies. So I’ve bought a dozen Computer Engineer Barbies to play with instead. Computer Engineer Barbie wears leggings, which is a bit of a change from the frummie skirt. Still, […]

student love

I love RG. RG has been coming to Apprentice with a Sofer on Tuesday nights. She doesn’t count herself as valid to work on a sefer Torah (because she holds that men and women have different halakhic capabilities) so every time we do a new thing, she asks me “Can I do this? Can I […]

your student doesn’t finish her first sefer Torah every day

My beloved student Julie has been writing a Torah in San Francisco at the Contemporary Jewish Museum for the past year, and once she’d finished writing (yay) it came time to sew it together and have a bit of an Event. So I went out there to help with the sewing and to be part […]

cheers for readers!

Wow, you people are the best. Following a post containing some uncertainty about the availability of wool tank tops and cotton tzitzit (the one for the stringent, the other for the allergic-to-wool), Rebecca links us to a wool tank top, which even has wider shoulder pieces rather than spaghetti straps, to please both the large-chested […]

Making Your Own Girl-Shaped Tallit Katan

I couldn’t get to Limmud this year because of the snow closing all the airports. This is one of the sessions I would have given. Wearing tzitzit under your clothes isn’t just something men do, but commercially-available tallitot katanot are definitely man-shaped. Bring a strappy top and come learn how to make a tallit katan […]

Israeli Masorti responsum on sofrot

Been meaning to write about this since 2009…one of my colleagues in Israel asked the Masorti movement for their official position on lady scribes. Their response is here. It’s in Hebrew, so I’m posting a summary of the main points: * The Gemara and many major halakhic decisors say it’s a problem for women to […]