Zion doesn’t love you

http://glintglimmergleam.tumblr.com/post/79714858244

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Esther assimilates because Uncle Mordecai tells her to.

Esther assimilates because it is safer.

Esther assimilates because the courtesans are sweet.

Esther assimilates because suddenly she’s rich.

Esther assimilates because her parents are a distant memory.

Esther assimilates because the girls back home were nasty.

Esther assimilates because the prayers took too long.

Esther assimilates because non-kosher wine tastes better.

Esther assimilates because the forefathers are a fairy tale.

Esther assimilates because her Hebrew sounds awful.

Esther assimilates because she is stunning with straight hair.

Esther assimilates because she wants to.

It is not Hadassah who saves the Jews.  It is Esther, who hasn’t seen them in years.   Esther, who doesn’t know them any more. Esther, who never knew them.   Esther, who didn’t try.

(Hadassah stayed home and married poor and lived next door and raised poor sons who chanted ancient verses and died with her family by the Persian sword.)

Esther is a Queen, and Esther is a heroine, and Esther’s hair frizzes at night without the oils, and Esther hides her tears beneath scented silks.  Esther lifts her chin higher than the harem whispers.  Esther sees Haman pale and shivering in her dreams.

Esther sinks back into her canopy of spices and jewels and waits once more for her husband’s outstretched scepter.

Waits, and aches for what it means to be Chosen.”

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“Six recognized genders in Old Israel”

Zachar: Usually translated as “male” in English.
Nekevah: Usually translated as “female” in English.
Androgynos: A person who has both “male” and “female” sexual characteristics. [Source: 149 references in Mishna and Talmud (1st-8th Centuries CE); 350 in classical midrash and Jewish law codes (2nd -16th Centuries CE).]
Tumtum: A person whose sexual characteristics are indeterminate or obscured. [Source: 181 references in Mishna and Talmud; 335 in classical midrash and Jewish law codes.]
Ay’lonit: A person who is identified as “female” at birth but develops “male” characteristics at puberty and is infertile. [Source: 80 references in Mishna and Talmud; 40 in classical midrash and Jewish law codes.]
Saris: A person who is identified as “male” at birth but develops “female” characteristics as puberty and/or is lacking a penis. A saris can be “naturally” a saris (saris hamah), or become one through human intervention (saris adam).  [Source: 156 references in mishna and Talmud; 379 in
classical midrash and Jewish law codes.]

Source:  Classical Jewish Terms for Gender Diversity by Rabbi Elliot Kukla, 2006

Our Sages non-judgmentally explore the role of intersex people in regards to many facets of ritual and civil law such as circumcision, redemption, oath-taking and menstruation.

The midrash, in Bereshit Rabah, posits that Adam, the first human being, was actually an androgynos. While in the Babylonian Talmud (Yevamot 64a-64b) the radical claim is made that Abraham and Sarah were tumtumim, gender non-conforming people. According to our tradition the first human being and the first Jews were gender outlaws. This teaches us that it is those that transgress the apparently rigid lines of Judaism that have caused the tradition to grow.

Rabbi Elliot Kukla, Parashat Vayechi: Beyond Stick Figures

nativepeopleproblems.tumblr.com: “Like look, the first man was intersex. The first Jews were intersex. Fuck people who say religions are transphobic and intersexist when they really mean that western christianity is transphobic and intersexist.”

96 Years Ago Today: Rosa Luxemburg was murdered in Berlin

remembering an influential radical Jewish woman!!!

rosaluxemburgblog

1907 or 1908 maybe- rosa luxemburg- rls

96 years ago today, on 15 January 1919, Rosa Luxemburg was detained, interrogated and murdered by right-wing soldiers under the command of socialist Defence Minister Gustav Noske. Today she is remembered around the world for her life and ideas.

Born in Russian-Poland in a middle-class Jewish family in 1873, Rosa Luxemburg emigrated to Switzerland after completing High School and enrolled at Zurich University. Whilst still a student she co-founded the Social Democracy of the Kingdom of Poland (SDKP, later SDKPiL), with Leo Jogiches, Adolf Warszawski and Julian Marchlewski, before being awarded a doctorate in 1897.

The following year, she moved to Berlin and joined the German Social-Democratic Party (SPD), then the largest and most powerful socialist organisation in the world. She rose to prominence on the left-wing of the SPD as a firebrand speaker, journalist and theoretician, writing works on economics, nationalism, imperialism, war, socialism and democracy.

Luxemburg taught at…

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Wagner’s Anti-Semitism Still Matters

Wagner’s Anti-Semitism Still Matters

“What are we to do with Wagner’s anti-Semitism? The recent Wagner anniversary has brought a predictable amount of equivocation and hand-wringing about the German master’s role in the history of hate. We know by now not to read history backward. A nineteenth-century composer who died in 1883 cannot logically be accused of personal complicity in a twentieth-century genocide. Yet that does not mean that the broader question of his responsibility for the spread of modern anti-Semitism can be simply ignored. … The real legacy of Wagner, one with which we are still living today, is nothing less than the sweeping imprint of racial ideology across the length and breadth of modern classical music.”

“But, ironically, the more we learn of banned composers, the harder it is to hear their music outside the framework of the Holocaust. The ending we all know and cannot forget reverberates backward. This is regrettable. For when the composer’s music is permanently coupled to his victimhood, Jewishness becomes merely a negative condition. That generation upon generation of Jewish musicians confronted racism at the heart of classical music does not mean that every work they wrote must be heard as a Semitic cry of despair. Not every knock at the door means the secret police. Not every minor-key passage is lachrymose. Still, the sonic shadows prove hard to elude. We may think we inhabit a post-Holocaust soundscape, but we still very much live in Wagner’s world. “

Book review: The Yemenite tragedy

#to read

Seth J. Frantzman

Review of The “Magic Carpet” Exodus of Yemenite Jewry: An Israeli Formative Myth, by Esther Meir-Glitzenstein Sussex Academic Press, £67.50 / $89.95, published in The Jerusalem Post Magazine January 10

By SETH J. FRANTZMAN

Yemenite Jews in a camp in Israel Yemenite Jews in a camp in Israel

In 1949 they came from all over Yemen, from 1,000 villages, often traveling on foot to reach camp. “It was a desert place without any sign of vegetation. Refugees living in matted huts, like sardines, living a base, primitive life. The camp has 4,000 people and babies are born every day,” recalled Ethel Slonim, a nurse who had arrived in Aden, now Yemen, in 1948. Many died en route, and in the camp.

Yet even more than half a century later, the traumatic immigration is thought of as a miracle. Why has the myth of the Yemenite migration not been fully understood for what it was: a massive tragedy in…

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