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Women's Torah Study: The Idea and the Meaning
By Dr. Hanah Kehat

Center Updates

Applications for the Fanya Gottesfeld Heller Grants (Student, Research, Travel, Translation) can be submitted untill January 1 , 2014.

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A Conference in Celebration of a Decade of "Kolech" (December 16th, 2008)

Kolech, the important forum for religious feminists in Israel celebrated ten years since its' founding, at Bar-Ilan University. The festive event took place in the Mintz auditorium at the University, and was well attended by over 300 participants. The attendees came to show support for the important work of the organization throughout its short history.

Prof. Miriam Faust of Bar-Ilan University opened the conference with tremendous praise for the organization, and was followed by Dr. Hanah Kehat, one of the founders of Kolech who has been active in the organization ever since. It was a moving speech, describing the original vision which has since materialized.

The evening continued with lively discussions, on what the challenges of the organization's next ten years will be, led by Prof. Tova Cohen. Participants of the panel included Rabbinical advocate Rivka Lubitch, who spoke about the issues that women are facing in the rabbinical courts. Naama Cohen-Safrai discussed the younger generation of activists within the organization, Evelyn Zikri spoke about the identity of Mizrahi Sephardic women as activists in the organization and Dr. Eli Holzer reflected on the challenge of being both "religious" and "feminist". Prof. Noam Zohar added an interesting perspective by speaking about the halakhic obstacles and objectives facing women in the organization and Dr. Gili Zivan from the Herzog Center spoke about the activities of Kolech within the community. Rachel Keren, Director of Kolech and Midreshet Ein Hanaziv responded to the various perspectives.

Kolech distributed awards to some of its' most active members, and a prize was given to Tsippi Levin-Byron, winner of the song competition which was held by Kolech this year. The evening concluded with the presentation of the movie "Chalakah", produced by Avigail Sperber. A fascination discussion ensued about the concept of "Men, Women, and the Shekhinah between them".

The event was enlivened by the performance of Hagit Kfir, whose songs throughout the evening,added to the festivities. Kfir has become a noted personality in the organization. The Fanya Gottesfeld Heller Center for the Study of Women in Judaism is proud to have supported Kolech activities since its inception and to have helped host such a unique celebration of tremendous achievements.