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Bat mitzvah wow!

Profiling soferet Shoshana Gugenheim

I know I said I'd be offline for a few days -- and I mostly am! -- but I'm logging on briefly this morning to let folks know that the new issue of Zeek: A Jewish Journal of Thought and Culture is online, and (as usual) everything in it is good.

I especially want to point folks toward my contribution to this issue (not because it's mine, but because it's a story I think is really worth reading): an interview with / profile of soferet (Torah scribe) Shoshana Gugenheim, which is called Shoshana Gugenheim: Woman of the Book. We spoke about art, Judaism, halakha, pluralism, and what it means for a woman to engage in the work that Shoshana's doing. Here's a tiny taste of the introduction:

For a woman to dedicate her life not only to sofrut, but specifically to writing a sefer Torah, is radical. Gugenheim isn't just claiming her right to hold forth as a Jewish woman about her reality; she is taking the most fundamental tool of Jewish authorship and authority into her own hands. When I write poems out of my own Jewish experience, I can say I'm "writing the Torah of my life" — but when Gugenheim takes up ink and quill, she is writing her life's Torah in a literal sense.


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