As I mull over the development of a certain newborn baby otherwise known as this blog, I see that many posts have to do with American “assimilationist” cultural Judaism, which often connects to a “pick-and-choose” characteristic of Reform Judaism. The purpose of this blog is to critique potentially sexist Jewish practices, to recognize the practices that promote egalitarianism, and to make an effort to impart feminist significance.
That said, Jewish feminism is not exclusive to any one denomination nor is it connected to the philosophy that there must be denominations at all. This is where pluralism comes in. I interpret pluralism to mean the coming together of multiple perspectives for the sake of a common cause (i.e. Jewish feminism). In Obama-speak, this blog is intended to be a salad bowl through which differences are celebrated and learned from rather than broken down and blended together.
I actually believe that it is dangerous for the movement to associate itself with any one denomination because that has the potential to exclude denominations that practice Judaism in ways that are in the greatest need for Jewish feminism.
So this is my dream for this blog. I want us – meaning the editors, commenters, and casual readers – to engage in a pluralistic dialogue on Jewish feminism. I want us to learn from each other about how Judaism can provide equal opportunity in any and all settings. I envision this blog to be a forum for anyone with even the slightest interest in Judaism or feminism to come and find something they can relate to and are passionate about. For that to happen, pluralism must be practiced rigorously.
Sounds doable, doesn’t it?