Hadassah-Brandeis calendar features Jewish women writers from around the world

Themes of gender, family and religion from Cambridge to Shiraz to Shanghai

Jewish Women Writers: The Cities behind the Stories

“Tucked away in a little corner of this grand city (Shanghai, China) is the incongruous Hongkew Ghetto; it stands as a reminder and is visited by thousands of tourists who seek to learn about an obscure bit of Jewish history,” says author Vivian Jeanette Kaplan, whose work “Ten Green Bottles” is featured in the latest wall calendar produced by the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute (HBI) at Brandeis University.

“Jewish Women Writers: The Cities behind the Stories” highlights 12 international authors whose writing illuminates life in urban settings all across the globe. Featured authors share experiences that span multiple generations, 12 cities and eight countries. Each writer’s Jewishness informs her work in unique ways.

The 12-month calendar (September 2010-August 2010) highlights themes of immigration, identity, family, gender and religion. It includes Jewish and national holidays and weekly Torah portions.

“Perhaps most important, you will discover how writing these books challenged stereotypes,” says Shulamit Reinharz, founding director of the HBI. “The Hadassah-Brandeis Institute recognizes the power of books to transform and enlighten.” This calendar, like others before it, inspires and delights the viewer, she said. Past HBI calendars featured the achievements and contributions of Jewish women scientists, writers, athletes, rabbis and activist artists.

Beautiful, full-color images of the featured cities fill the pages of the calendar and are accompanied by interviews with the writers.

Groundbreaking authors include National Jewish Book Award Winner Rebecca Goldstein, whose profound exploration of faith and reason in “36 Arguments” sheds light on Cambridge, Mass. Clara Sereni explores her identity as a Jewish-Italian woman with intertwining recipes in “Keeping House, a novel in recipes” and HBI book series authors Joyce Zonana, Esther David, Farideh Goldin and Marjorie Agosin recount their personal connections to the cities within their books.

“Jewish Women Writers: The Cities behind the Stories” is available for purchase for $13.95 plus shipping. Bulk discounts are available. For ordering information, visit the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute website, email or call 781-736-8114.

About the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute (HBI)

The Hadassah-Brandeis Institute (HBI) develops fresh ways of thinking about Jews and gender worldwide by producing and promoting scholarly research and artistic projects.

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