How Gender Shapes the Jewish Experience

By Harriet Hartman

Hadassah-Brandeis Institute, December 3, 2009

In this powerpoint presentation, Prof. Harriet Hartman discusses how gender shapes the Jewish experience and how Jewishness shapes the gender experience. She describes the following contradictory notions of familism that mark the Jewish community:  Jews have smaller families than other (white, educated) Americans and yet family has always been central to Judaism and Jews and strong family roles mitigate against women’s labor force and career involvement. Her research questions focus on how contemporary Jews reconcile these contradictory traditions of familism and on the role that Jewish identity plays in the patterns of contemporary American Jews in work, education and family. She describes her conclusions and offers policy implications for Jewish communal institutions and the Jewish family. Fundamentally, she argues that Jewish organizations need to support the dual tendencies of familism and involvement in the labor force for men and women by providing infrastructure (like child care) and forums for working out the inherent conflicts and issues, with Jewish guidance.

Topic: Gender, Jewish Identification, Men, Workplace, Jewish Organizations, Family, Women

Name of Publication: Jewish Women and Work: A Panel Discussion

Preview: Download

It appears you do not have a PDF plugin installed for this browser. To be able to preview the PDF, please install a PDF reader such as Adobe Reader.

Genre: Conference Presentation

Coverage: United States

Language: English

Copyright Holder: Author

Copyright Information: Download for personal use, freely distribute link

Bibliographic Information:
Hartman, Harriet. How Gender Shapes the Jewish Experience . Jewish Women and Work: A Panel Discussion. Hadassah-Brandeis Institute. 3 December 2009:


» View Publication
(PDF, 788 Kb)

Bookmark and Share