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|The decision of the Jewish Theological Seminar to ordain women for the rabbinate constituted a watershed in American Jewish history. Under the leadership of then-Chancellor Gershon D. Cohen, the protracted process of decision-making at the Seminary was the first time that the halakhic case in favor of such an action was aired publicly. |
As Chancellor Emeritus Cohen notes in his Preface to these papers, this volume will be of interest "not only to a student of the place of women in Jewish law, but to any student of Halakhah, for underlying the opinions on the admission of women to the Rabbinical School is the fundamental question of the role of social forces in the shaping of the Halakhah."
Included in this important volume are studies and responsa by Seminary faculty including Joseph Brodie, Israel Francus, Robert Gordus, Simon Greenberg, Anne Lapidus Lerner, Mayer Rabinowitz, David Roskies, Joel Roth and Gordon Tucker.
|Simon Greenberg —|
Dr. Simon Greenberg has been associated with the Jewish Theological Seminary since 1932 and served for many years as its Vice-Chancellor, Vice-President of the Faculties and Professor of Homiletics and Education. He is the author of Foundations of Faith; The Teachings of Judaism on God, Man, Torah and Israel; The Ideals of the Jewish Prayer Book; Living as a Jew Today; The Ethical in the American and Jewish Heritage; A Jewish Philosophy and Pattern of Life.
|The deliberative body issuing this report was formed at the behest of the Rabbinical Assembly, which, at its annual convention held in May 1977 in Liberty New York, passed the following resolution:|
Be it resolved that the Rabbinical Assembly respectfully petitions the Chancellor of The Jewish Theological Seminary of America to establish an interdisciplinary commission to study all aspects of the role of women as spiritual leaders in the Conservative Movement.
Be it further resolved that this study commission, whose membership shall reflect the pluralism and diversity of the Conservative Movement, shall be responsible for a progress report on its findings to be presented to the Executive Council of the Rabbinical Assembly in the spring of 1978, and for a final report and recommendation at the 1979 Convention of the Rabbinical Assembly.