Bat mitzvahs are a common occurrence in countries such as the United States and Israel, but what about Bolivia, Honduras and Cochabamba?
“Today I am a women: Stories of Bat Mitzvah around the world” by Barbara Vinick and Shulamit Reinharz shares different stories of bat mitzvahs held from a variety of backgrounds.
The stories give context to how bat mitzvahs have evolved not only from country to country, but also through time, as it shares celebrations from World War II Italy and the first bat mitzvah held at the only synagogue in Indonesia.
The stories use testimonies and evocative photos to give the reader a real sense of what a bat mitzvah felt like in that time period and location.
Both Vinick and Reinharz are professors at Brandeis University and wrote the book as a part of the work done by the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute. Vinick has studied gendered rituals in Jewish communities worldwide, and Reinharz is the director of HBI and a sociology professor.