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Upcoming Events

Book Launch

Marriage, and Jewish Families: Paradoxes of a Social Revolution

 Marriage, and Jewish Families: Paradoxes of a Social Revolution

Panel discussion with editor, Sylvia Barack Fishman and authors

Sylvia Barack Fishman

Sunday, March 20, 2016,  7:00 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Rapoporte Treasure Hall, Goldfarb Library
Brandeis University 
415 South St., Waltham, MA 


Annual Diane Markowicz Memorial Lecture on Gender and Human Rights

Karima Bennoune

HBI to host Karima Bennoune, author of Your Fatwa Does Not Apply Here: Untold Stories from the Fight Against Muslim Fundamentalism. Bennoune is a Professor of International Law at the University of California – Davis School of Law and is the United Nations’ Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights.

Sunday, April 3, 2016, 7 PM

Rapaporte Treasure Hall, Goldfarb Library
Brandeis University
515 South St., Waltham, MA

Free and open to the public.
To RSVP, email hbi@brandeis.edu

Upcoming Deadlines

Helen Gartner Hammer Scholar-in-Residence Program
Thursday, January 28, 2016

Boston Agunah Taskforce

Boston Agunah Taskforce

Learn more

Latest Publications

Lisa Fishbayn JoffeFresh Ideas from HBI: The HBI Blog

Nashim: A Journal of Jewish Women's Studies & Gender IssuesNashim: A Journal of Jewish Women's Studies & Gender Issues 

The Strangers We BecameThe Strangers We Became

 Marriage, and Jewish Families: Paradoxes of a Social RevolutionMarriage, and Jewish Families: Paradoxes of a Social Revolution

Inbar Raveh - Feminist Rereadings of Rabbic LiteratureFeminist Rereadings of Rabbinic Literature


The Audacity of HolinessThe Audacity of Holiness: Orthodox Women's Theater in Israel

KnishKnish: In Search of the Jewish Soul Food

Fresh Ways of Thinking About Jews and Gender Worldwide

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The Hadassah-Brandeis Institute develops fresh ways of thinking about Jews and gender worldwide by producing and promoting scholarly research, artistic projects and public engagement.

The world's only academic center of its kind, the HBI provides research resources and programs for scholars, students and the public. The Institute publishes books and a journal, convenes international conferences and local programming, and offers competitive grant and internship programs.

We invite you to explore our website and experience the impact of the HBI.

HBI Congratulates Helène Aylon

Bridge of KnotsA heartfelt congratulations to Helène Aylon as she receives the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award from the Women’s Caucus for Art on Feb. 4. The award recognizes the contribution of women to the arts and their profound effect on society, honoring women for their work, their vision, and their commitmentHelène Aylon speaks of her five-decade multimedia art as a “rescue” of the Body, the Earth, and God — all stuck in patriarchal designations. HBI is proud to have published Aylon’s memoir, Whatever Is Contained Must Be Released: My Orthodox Jewish Girlhood, My Life as a Feminist Artist, in the Reuben-Rifkin-HBI Series with Feminist Press. Aylon serves on the HBI’s Academic Advisory Committee, has received multiple research awards for her art. In addition to her exhibitions all over the world, Aylon exhibited Machberet Memories at HBI’s Kniznick Gallery.  For more information, visit Helène AylonPhoto credit: Helène Aylon"My Wailing Wall" at Rider University’s Bart Luedeke Center, NJ 

HBI's Spring Seminar Now in Session

The Hadassah-Brandeis Institute's themed Spring Seminar, North American Jewish Women's Writing of Fiction, Memoir and Poetry features a series of talks from international scholars and authors.

Join us as they analyze these genres while exploring Jewishness and gender. Prof. Sylvia Barack Fishman, HBI's co-director, directs the HBI Spring Seminar. The lectures are free and open to the public. 

Tuesday, February 9, 5:30 – 7:00PM, Scholar-in-residence, Lori Harrison-Kahan, “The Intermarriage Plot: Emma Wolf, Bettie Lowenberg, and the Deghettoization of American Jewish Fiction.” Liberman-Miller Lecture Hall

Tuesday, February 23, 5:30 – 7:00PM, Scholar-in-residence, Kathryn Hellerstein, "'What is it to be a Jewish woman poet?' Women Poets as Jewish Translators" Liberman-Miller Lecture Hall

Tuesday, March 8, 5:30 – 7:00PM, Scholar-in-residence, Chantal Ringuet, “On the Other Side of Poetry. Rachel Korn and Kadia Molodowsky, two Yiddish Women Writers in North America,” Liberman-Miller Lecture Hall

Tuesday, March 29, 3:30PM – 5:30PM, Spring Seminar, Allegra Goodman, Title: TBA, Liberman-Miller Lecture Hall

Tuesday, April 12, 5:30 – 7:00PM – Spring Seminar, Nora Gold, Title: TBA, Liberman-Miller Lecture Hall

Tuesday, May 3rd, 4:30 – 7:30PM - Spring Seminar Final Presentations, Liberman-Miller Lecture Hall

Special Event
Join us for a book launch party of recent publication, Love, Marriage and Jewish Families: Paradoxes of a Social Revolution, edited by HBI Co-director Prof. Sylvia Barak Fishman on Sunday, March 20th, 7:00 PM, Rapaporte Treasure Hall, Brandeis University. The event will feature discussion from chapter authors on topics ranging from love, sexuality, family transformations, marriage and more.

The Spring Seminar is supported in part with a gift from Elaine Reuben, HBI Board member. 

HBI Gives $75,000 in Research Awards

Titles like “Wild, Outside, in the Night: Maurice Sendak, Queer American Jewishness, and the Child” and “Kadosh Kadosh Kadosh: All Rise for Women on a Beit Din” are just two of the 25 research awards the HBI will support over the following year.

These projects, of Golan Moskowitz and Helene Aylon respectively, and the others received a total of $75,000 after the annual Academic Advisory Committee meeting in December, 2015. The AAC, comprised of 160 experts and academics from 52 schools in eight countries, review the appropriate proposals and comment over a review period. The process culminates with a day-long meeting at HBI, this year attended by 30 members, to discuss the finalists. Final decisions are made by Prof. Sylvia Barack Fishman, HBI’s co-director and chair of the AAC along with Prof. Shulamit Reinharz, HBI’s founding director and Dr. Lisa Fishbayn Joffe, associate director of HBI and director of the Project on Gender, Culture, Religion and the Law. 

The research awards support the HBI mission of developing fresh ways of thinking about Jews and gender worldwide. Sub-categories include History, Israel and the Yishuv; Families, Children and the Holocaust; Diaspora Studies, Judaism, Gender, Culture, Religion and the Law, Biography, Film and Video and Arts. 

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Scholarly Research

Artist-in-Residence program

Gilda Slifka Internship Program

Visit our YouTube channel for additional videos on our HBI Conversations program and the Project on Gender, Culture, Religion and the Law.

HBI in the News

HBI’s co-director Sylvia Barack Fishman mentioned in The Jewish Week, Seeing Crisis, Jewish Ethics Group Urges Reform.

Shulamit Reinharz, HBI Founding director, on More Young Women Moving Back Home in the Boston Globe.

Former scholar-in-residence Nina Lichtenstein in Lilith, The Making of a Viking Jewess.

Janet Freedman, scholar at the Brandeis Women's Studies Research Center and a member of the HBI's Academic Advisory Council, started a national conversation on the NWSA's acceptance of a BDS resolution. Dr. Freedman's blogs in Fresh IdeasA Statement in Opposition to the NWSA Resolution on BDS  and For the Womens Studies Association the BDS Vote Was Over Before it Began prompted other references and blogs in The Forward's Sisterhood, the Forward's  Dont Be Surprised When Activists Connect Israel to Campus Rape, Inside Higher Ed's  Another Association Backs Israel Boycott and the Daily Beast's Do Feminists Have to Hate Israel?

Research award recipients, Julia Phillips Cohen and Sarah Abrevaya Stein discuss their award-winning book, Sephardi Lives: A Documentary History. 

Cynthia Shamash, author of The Strangers We Became: Lessons in Exile from One of Iraq's Last Jews in the HBI Series on Jewish Women is interviewed by Vox Tablet, Girlhood Interrupted.

Katka Reszke, Helen Gartner Hammer Scholar-in-Residence served as chief screenwriter for Karski & The Lords of Humanity

Elana Maryles Sztokman, award-winning HBI author, explains which Jewish feminists she would invite to dinner in The Prosen People

Susan Weiss, HBI author and former scholar-in-residence on in the Forward on why Israel's Voiding of Conversions Should Worry Us All

Rabbi Lila Kagedan, research association in the HBI Project on Gender, Culture, Religion and the Law on taking the title, rabbi.

The JWA's Rising Voices blog profiles HBI Research Award recipient, Helène Aylon, in Artists For a Cause