This Awesome Video Lists 18 Things Jewish Orthodox Feminists Are Sick Of Hearing

jewish-orthodox-feminists

Feminism and Orthodoxy. Two terms you probably didn’t expect to see in the same sentence, right? Well if you have been paying close attention to the uprising of women in a lot of religions in the world today (including Latter Day Saints, Islam, Church of England, and Catholicism) feminism seems to be increasingly part of the every day fabric of spiritual women who want to take up equal roles as men in their chosen faith without being seen as compromising their inherent beliefs.

You can also add Jewish Orthodox women to that growing list, as you will see in the awesomely hilarious video below made by Talia Lakritz who happens to be a member of the Jewish Orthodox faith as well as a feminist. Yep, the “F” word!

Talia is also a student at Barnard College and is the woman behind the Nerd With A Voice Youtube channel which she started five years ago as a platform to share her original music. Her videos also contain musings about life, music, education, religion, and Benedict Cumberbatch. Ya know, the usual stuff.

In a recent video which is starting to get a lot of attention (32,000 and counting) she gives a list of 18 things Jewish Orthodox feminists are sick of hearing, where she dresses up as a handful of various Orthodox female characters. She told the Times of Israel that the idea came about after conversations she had had in her own life. Talia is a member of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance (JOFA) and it was while she was at a summer camp earlier this year that she decided to make the video.

“I’ve wanted to make this video for a LONG TIME, based on countless conversations and experiences I’ve had as an Orthodox Jewish feminist. That’s right, I’m ‘one of those’,” she writes in a description about the video.

Discussions with other members at the camp added fuel to the fire and she realized she wasn’t the only one experiencing the backlash when it came to her being an Orthodox feminist. Many of the the phrases she lists are based around conservative Orthodox ideas that women’s obligations should be separate from men (not necessarily unequal), and center more around the home and raising the family. The idea of women in leadership roles is also sometimes seen as a point of contention in some conservative circles.

jewish-orthodox-feminists

But Talia, being part of a new generation of Orthodox women who believe feminism to be an integral part of their faith included statements such as these in the video: “Women should have an active role in Jewish communal life, just not yet”, “why call it feminism, why can’t you call it something less provocative?”, “women don’t need to do all those extra things because they’re so holy”, and this zinger “you’re never gonna find a husband if you keep this up.”

The interesting thing about this video is that the heightened attention to it forced Youtube to contact her.

“What really got the views going was when it hit the feminist scene in Israel. Just goes to show that Jewish feminists everywhere encounter similar struggles,” she said.

She only has just over 800 subscribers and her videos average anywhere from 100-500 views. So when Youtube saw the huge numbers she was getting on this video, they thought she was illegally buying views. It turns out the interwebs are just high attuned to anyone posting about feminism these days!

Her interest in feminism stemmed from her upbringing which was quite varied. She attended a co-ed school and once gave a speech about sexism after not being allowed to play football with the boys. She also attended a girls school. When she started attending Barnard it was there that she was introduced to a community of feminist Orthodox Jewish women like herself.

jewish-orthodox-feminists

“I think the reason people are scared is that they are suspicious of feminism because it’s a modern value, and mixing tradition and modernity means we’re not frum [religiously observant] anymore. The more women are empowered within Judaism the better it is for everyone,” she said.

As for the idea that her video may exclude other orthodox feminist voices (as some men often claim women do amongst feminist circles), she already has her bases covered:

“I realize that there are Orthodox Jewish male feminists, and am super grateful for them! However, this video is not about them. Supporting a cause means the spotlight won’t always be on you. Much love to the men in the Orthodox community who work to make things better for both sides of the mechitzah. If you want to make a video about things male Orthodox Jewish feminists are tired of hearing, do it and tweet it at me (@nerdwithavoice). I would be delighted,” she writes.

We love seeing a diverse array of feminists sharing their message of empowerment across the web. The intersectionality aspect of feminism is so important that we need voices like Talia’s to show other women in her own community why the fight for equality is their fight also.

Take a look at the video below and subscribe to her channel:

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