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A Jewish Feminine Mystique?: Jewish Women in Postwar America Paperback – December 7, 2010
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The first group of articles focuses on women who worked as activists addressing social problems. Of these essays several focus on Jewish organizations and the women active in them and other are mini-biographies of individual activists. The second group of articles examines Jewish immigrant women, in this period, whose lives bore no resemblance to those of comfortable suburban women. The third group focuses on the image of the Jewish woman and those who challenged the gender expectations. The raunchy comediennes Belle Barth, Pearl Williams and Patsy Abbott are the focus of "The Bad Girls of Comedy." Separate essays are devoted to the career and politics of Judy Holliday, the image and accomplishments of Jennie Grossinger and "Reading Marjorie Morningstar in the Age of the Feminine Mystique and After." The penultimate essay is devoted to the feminist movements since the 60s and the final essay is a reflection on Betty Friedan's life. The role of Judaism in developing these women's interests and independence and the later conflicts that arose in the feminist movement between Jews and non-Jews, is addressed.
This book is well-indexed with footnotes and, like many volumes comprised of collections of papers from a conference, this title is for those with a serious interest in the subject, not for casual readers.