Share Your Favorite Social Justice Haggadah!

Passover is only a few days away, which means our minds are set on freedom. (And matzo balls, but I digress). As the holiday that tells the story of the Israelite’s exodus from slavery in ancient Egypt, talking about justice is a hugely important aspect the celebration.

Fittingly, there are a ton of haggadot (the text read during the seder) that highlight these themes and help us apply the notions of freedom and justice to modern day life. In past years, we’ve told you about some of our faves - like the Food and Justice Haggadah Supplement by the folks at Uri L’Tzedek and Jews United for Justice’s Labor Seder. But we know we’re missing some biggies.

That’s where you come in! Do you have a favorite haggadah, supplement, or Passover reading? One that means a lot to you and that illuminates themes of freedom, justice, or social change? If so, we want to hear about it!

This Passover, share you favorite social justice haggadah in the comments below or by tweeting us at @repairtheworld #HaggadahShare

Thanks and Happy Passover!

How to Successfully Ban Bossy

Facebook’s COO, Sheryl Sandberg, has a track-record for coining catchy phrases that launch revolutions. Her book Lean In got women thinking in new ways about getting the most out of their careers and lives. More recently, she pioneered the notion Ban Bossy, which suggests that we do our daughters, and all women, a disservice by labeling women who speak up for themselves with a negative label like “bossy” instead of a positive one like “leader.”

“Words like bossy send a message: don’t raise your hand or speak up,” says the ban bossy website. “By middle school, girls are less interested in leading than boys – a trend that continues into adulthood. Sandberg’s campaign has partnered with the Girl Scouts of America and superstars like Beyonce and Jennifer Garner to spread their message.
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4 Jewish Women’s Blogs That Change the World

As Laurel Thatcher Ulrich famously wrote, “Well behaved women rarely make history.” Her words have become a rallying cry and an inspiration for women everywhere – including women bloggers, who make history through their words.

This Women’s History Month, here are 4 women-centric Jewish blogs that strive to give voice to the diverse, wonderful, rebellious, and inspiring stories of women.

The Sisterhood: This popular blog, housed at The Jewish Daily Forward, covers a far-ranging array of compelling topics from stories about modern day sex-trafficking, Jewish motherhood, and to how an Israeli beauty queen is fighting for women’s rights in her country.

Lilith: The pioneering Jewish women’s publication also has an awesome blog that brings the magazine’s “independent, Jewish, and frankly feminist” journalism online. Contributors range in background from secular to Orthodox, which means there’s room for every voice on the blog.

Jewish Women’s Archive: Titled “Jewesses with Attitude,” JWA’s blog is consistently sassy and smart. The organization recently launched a fellowship called Rising Voices, for outstanding Jewish teen girls who will, among other things, share their thoughts and words on the blog.

JewFem: Founded by Dr. Elana Maryles Sztokman, the former Executive Director of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance (JOFA), this blog and website covers gender and feminism from an observant Jewish perspective.

Do you have a favorite Jewish women’s blog that we’re missing on this list? Let us know in the comments below, or by tweeting @repairtheworld.

Mayim Bialik, Women’s History Month, and “Princess Culture”

Maybe you remember her as the star of Blossom, the early-90s sitcom that launched her career. Perhaps you watch her today playing Amy Farrah Fowler, the adorkable neurobiologist on The Big Bang Theory. You may even know her as a regular contributor to the Jewish parenting website, Kveller.

However you know Mayim Bialik, you undoubtedly think, like we do, that she is awesome. After all, how many other Hollywood celebrities find the time to be super engaged parents, education activists, and cookbook authors (check out the newly released a href=”http://www.amazon.com/Mayims-Vegan-Table-Great-Tasting-Healthy/dp/0738217042″>Mayim’s Vegan Table)?

So in honor of Women’s History Month, we’re turning to one of our favorite contemporary heroines for her thoughts on women in culture today – and particularly on the “princess culture,” which seems to permeate so much of society. Check out the first part of Mayim’s thoughts below, then head on over to Kveller for the rest!

On the Big Bang Theory Princess Scene & Why I Don’t Like Princess Culture
By: Mayim Bialik

Last night’s episode of The Big Bang Theory featured my character, Melissa Rauch’s character, and Kaley Cuoco’s character dressed up as different Disney princesses. I was Snow White (since I’m the brunette), Melissa was Cinderella, and Kaley was Sleeping Beauty.

This would be a good time to tell you that I never once for Halloween or Purim ever dressed as a princess. I don’t remember having any particular fondness for fairy tales or the color pink. I despised the color purple and much as I enjoyed jewelry and trying out my mom’s makeup and even wearing my favorite robe (which happened to be pink) around the house, there is not one picture of me dressed like any sort of princess, Disney or otherwise.

I did, however, really enjoy being “character” females for dress-up holidays; most notably, my mother loved to dress me as a “gypsy.” I am hoping this isn’t perceived as racist in this culture of political correctness, but basically, “gypsy” meant fun fabrics, brightly colored belts, lots of layers, a bandana, and a darkening of a mole near red lips. I loved Japanese kimonos as a child, and once I went to a costume party in a kimono and traditional wooden Japanese shoes.

Read the rest of Mayim’s thoughts here…