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Medieval Jewish Women in History, Literature, Law, and Art: An Annotated Bibliography
Compiled by Cheryl Tallan
HistoryAdelman, Howard. 1991. "Italian Jewish Women." In Jewish Women in Historical Perspective. Ed. Judith Baskin. Detroit: Wayne State U.P. 135-158. Contains sections on women in the public sphere, women and worship, published women writers, women as ritual slaughterers, women and business, and education and private life.
---. 1991. "Rabbis and Reality: The Public Roles of Jewish Women in the Renaissance and Catholic Restoration." Jewish History 5: 27-40. Discusses the public activities of Jewish women in the areas of dress, public visibility, prayer and disruption of services, ritual slaughtering, witnessing, and business.
---. 1993. "The Educational and Religious Activities of Jewish Women in Italy." In Shlomo Simonsohn Jubilee Volume. Ed. Aharon Oppenheimer et al. Tel Aviv: Tel Aviv U. P. 9-23.
---. 1994. "Custom, Law, and Gender: Levirate Union among Ashkenazim and Sephardim in Italy after the Expulsion from Spain." In The Expulsion of the Jews: 1492 and after. Ed. Raymond Waddington and Arthur Williamson. New York and London: Garland. 107-125.
---. 1994. "Wife-Beating among Early Modern Italian Jews, 1400-1700." Eleventh World Congress of Jewish Studies: Proceedings (1993). Division B, Volume I, 135-141 (English section). Using both responsa and literary sources, Adelman shows the ambivalence of the Italian community in forcing a husband to divorce his wife in clear cases of wife-beating.
---. 1995. "Servants and Sexuality: Seduction, Surrogacy and Rape: Some Observations Concerning Class, Gender, and Race in Early Modern Italian Jewish Families." In Gender and Judaism: The Transformation of Tradition. Ed. Tamar Rudavsky. New York & London: New York U.P. 81-97.
---. 1996. "'A Disgrace for all Jewish Men': Preliminary Considerations for the Study of Wife-Beating in Jewish History." Medieval Feminist Newsletter 21: 21-23. States that medieval rabbis rarely condemn wife-beating and rarely force divorce in the cases of abusive husbands.
Adler, Michael. 1939. "The Jewish Woman in Medieval England." In The Jews of Medieval England. London: Edward Goldston. 17-42. Emphasizes women's economic role.
Agus, Irving. 1965. Urban Civilization in Pre-Crusade Europe. 2 vols. New York: Yeshiva U.P. Contains responsa on ketubbah and inheritance problems of women and also on their economic activities.
---. 1969. "The Family". In The Heroic Age of Franco-German Jewry. New York: Bloch. 277-309. Describes both marriage arrangements and the high status of women due to large dowries and their activity in business.
Amt, Emilie, ed. 1993. "Jewish Women." In Women's Lives in Medieval Europe. New York: Routledge. 279-296. Includes excerpts from chronicles, law codes, ethical wills, and responsa which reflect the lives of European Jewish women from 1096-1470.
Assis, Yom Tov. 1988. "Sexual Behaviour in Mediaeval Hispano-Jewish Society." In Jewish History: Essays in Honour of Chimen Abramsky. Eds. Ada Rapoport-Albert and Steven J. Zipperstein. London: Peter Halban. 25-59. Discusses the sexual relationships in medieval Spain concerning courtship and love, husbands and wives, concubines, premarital and extra-marital sex, prostitution, adultery, illegal marriages and incestuous relations, rape, and homosexuals.
Baskin, Judith. 1991. "Some Parallels in the Education of Medieval Jewish and Christian Women." Jewish History 5: 41-51. Discusses the education of girls and also some learned women, both Christian and Jewish.
---. 1991. "Jewish Women in the Middle Ages." In Jewish Women in Historical Perspective, ed. Baskin. Detroit: Wayne State U. P. 94-114. Examines the lives of Jewish women both in Moslem lands and in Christian Europe.
Blasco Martinez, Asuncion. 1989. "El Adulterio de Dona Lumbre Judia De Zaragoza: Causas y Consecuencias [The adultery of Dona Lumbre, Jewess of Saragosa: Causes and Consequences]." Michael 11: 99-120. Includes the archival sources and their analysis of a celebrated adultery case in fourteenth-century Saragosa.
---. 1990. "Testamentes de Mujeres Judias Aragonesas, 1401-1418" [Wills of Jewish Aragonese Women, 1401-1418]. Tenth World Congress of Jewish Studies (1989): Proceedings. Division B, Vol. II, 127-134. Contains information on the wills of five Jewish women, most of them widows.
Brayer, Menachem. 1986. The Jewish Woman in Rabbinic Literature: A PsychoHistorical Perspective. Hoboken NJ: Ktav. Though very traditional in tone, this book contains much material of historic interest.
Cohen, Amnon. 1984. Jewish Life under Islam. Cambridge MA: Harvard U.P. 127-137. Describes the status of Jewish women as depicted in the archives of the Muslim court of Jerusalem.
Courtemanche, Andree. 1987. "Les femmes juives et le credit a Manosque au tournant du XIVe siecle" [Jewish Women and Credit in Manosque at the turn of the Fourteenth Century]. Provence Historique 150: 545-558. Describes the magnitude and extent of Jewish women's activities as lenders of money and grain.
Dobson, Barrie. 1992. "The Role of Jewish Women in Medieval England" (Presidential Address). In Christianity and Judaism Studies in Church History 29. Ed. Diana Wood. Oxford: Blackwell. Includes Jewish women's commercial and legal activities and a comparison of some aspects of the lives of Jewish and Christian women in thirteenth-century England.
Emery, Richard. 1987. "Les veuves juives de Perpignan (1317-1416)" [Jewish Widows of Perpignan (1317-1416)]. Provence Historique 150: 559-569. Discusses age at marriage, length of marriage, and length of widowhood of 285 Jewish widows.
Epstein, Isadore. 1970. "The Jewish Woman in the Responsa 900 C.E.- 1500 C.E." In The Jewish Library 3: Woman. Ed. Leo Jung. London: Soncino. 41-62. Includes interesting material on women's lives from rabbinical replies to questions from communities.
Fishman, Talya. 1992. "A Kabbalistic Perspective on Gender-Specific Commandments: on The Interplay of Symbols and Society". AJS Review 17.2: 199-245. An examination of Sefer HaKanah, a Kabbalistic work written in late fourteenth or early fifteenth century Byzantium, shows the author depriving women of opportunities accorded to her in Jewish legislation.
Friedman, Mordechai Akiva. 1974. "The Ethics of Medieval Jewish Marriage". In Religion in a Religious Age. Ed. S.D. Goitein. Cambridge MA: Association for Jewish Studies. 83-102. Using Cairo Genizah documents, Friedman describes marriage formulae, age at marriage, wife's freedom of movement, divorce procedures and ethics of divorce.
---. 1981. Jewish Marriage in Palestine. Volume I and II. Jerusalem: Daf Chen. Volume I contains a general introduction and a detailed study of Palestinian marriage contracts found in the Cairo Genizah; volume II contains complete texts of the documents, translations into English, and comments.
---. 1989. "Marriage as an Institution: Jewry Under Islam." In The Jewish Family: Metaphore and Memory Ed. David Kraemer. New York: Oxford U.P. 31-45. Poses the question, was the legal relationship between husband and wife among Jews in the Near East of the tenth to the thirteenth centuries that of property or partnership.
Frishtik, Mordechai. 1990. "Violence Against Women in Judaism." Journal of Psychology and Judaism 14: 131-153. Deals with different types of violence by husbands against their wives in the Jewish family in the past, includes references made to this violence by Jewish sages.
Garshowitz, Libby. 1995. "Gracia Mendes: Power, Influence, and Intrigue." In Power of the Weak: Studies on Medieval Women. Ed. Jennifer Carpenter and Sally-Beth MacLean. Urbana & Chicago: U. of Illinois P. 94-125. For a description of the life and financial affairs of this most famous of the sixteenth-century Portugese conversas Garshowitz draws on material from the responsa literature and other traditional Jewish sources.
Goitein, Shelomo D. 1967-1993. A Mediterranean Society. Berkeley: U. of California P. "Professions of Women" 1: 127-130. "The World of Women" 3: 312-360. Goitein's monumental 6 vol. work on the medieval Jewish society of Eygpt taken from original sources contains much material on women.
---. 1967. "A Jewish Business Woman of the Eleventh Century." In The Seventy-Fifth Anniversary Volume of The Jewish Quarterly Review. Ed. A.A. Neuman and S. Zeitlin. Philadelphia: Jewish Quarterly Review. 225-242. A detailed account, transliteration, and translation of documents dealing with Wuhsha, the broker, in eleventh century Egypt.
---. 1974. "The Jewish Family in the Days of Moses Maimonides." Conservative Judaism 29(1): 25-35. Although lacking in citations of the original sources, this article, under the headings of personal letters, agnate bonds, siblings and cousins, and the independence of women, emphasises the strength of the bonds between members of the natal family over those between members of the nuclear family.
---. 1977. "Three Trousseaux of Jewish Brides from the Fatamid Period." AJS Review 2: 77-110. Lists and comments on three trousseaus from lower middle-class, wealthy, and very wealthy brides, of the eleventh and twelfth century Egyptian Jewish community.
---. 1979. "The Sexual Mores of the Common People." In Society and the Sexes in Medieval Islam Ed. Afaf Lutfi Al-Sayyid-Marsot. Malibu CA: Undena Publications. 43-61. Discusses seclusion of women, concubinage with slave girls, marriage contracts, letters, divorce, and homosexuality.
---. 1980. "The Jewish Family of the High Middle Ages as revealed by the Documents of the Cairo Geniza." Gli Ebrei nell'Alto Medioevo. Vol. 26 of Settimane di Studio del Centro Italiano di Studi Sull'Alto Medioevo. 2 parts. Spoleto: Presso la Sede del Centro. 2: 713-733. A general report of material covered in Conservative Judaism 29 (1974) and more fully in volume 3 of A Mediterranean Society.
Goodblatt, Morris. 1952. Jewish Life in Turkey in the XVI Century. New York: Jewish Theological Seminary. 94-100, 111-117, 169-175. Information on women from the writings of Samuel De Medina of Salonika.
Grossman, Avraham. 1991. "Medieval Rabbinic Views on Wife-Beating, 800-1300." Jewish History 5: 53-62. Shows the changes in Rabbinic attitudes on wife-beating over the centuries and in differing locations.
---. 1993. "The Status of Jewish Women in Germany (10th-12th Centuries." In Zur Geschichte der judischen Frau in Deutschland. Hrsg. Julius Carlebach. Berlin: Metropol-Verl. 17-35. Stresses the favourable situation of Jewish women in Germany.
Hassoun, Jacques. 1986. "Un Judaisme au feminin" Les nouveaux cahiers. 86: 6-14. Using Genizah sources, material concerning the women of medieval Egypt including marriage contracts and the affairs of al-Wushah, the broker, are discussed.
Henry, Sondra and Emily Taitz. 1990/1978. Written Out of History: Our Jewish Foremothers. 3rd ed. rev. Sunnyside NY: Biblio P. About prominent Jewish women from the Bible to the 20th century.
Hughes, Diane Owen. 1985. "Earrings for Circumcision: Distinction and Purification in the Italian Renaissance City." In Persons in Groups: Social Behavior as Identity Formation in Medieval and Renaissance Europe. Ed. Richard Trexler. Binghampton: Medieval and Renaissance Texts and Studies. 155-177. A discussion of both dress and jewellery of northern Italian Jewish women as a result of Jews having to wear special signs or clothing.
---. 1986. "Distinguishing Signs: Ear-rings, Jews and Franciscan Rhetoric in the Italian Renaissance City." Past & Present 112: 3-59. Describes the imposition of distinguishing signs, both earrings and clothing, on Jews as a result of Franciscan sermons in northern Italian cities in the fifteenth century.
Iancu, Daniele. 1990. "Le trousseau de Mayrone." Les nouveaux cahiers. 101: 24-28. A description of a dowry of a Jewish bride of Aix-en-Provance in the late fifteenth century with a discussion of that dowry and those of her sisters.
Jordan, William C. 1978. "Jews on Top: Women and the Availability of Consumption Loans in Northern France in the Mid-Thirteenth Century." Journal of Jewish Studies 29: 39-56. Includes material on Christian women borrowers and Jewish women creditors and the relations between them.
---. 1983. "An Aspect of Credit in Picardy in the 1240s: The Deterioration of Jewish-Christian Financial Relations." Revue des etudes juives 142: 141-152. Pp. 149-150 have information on women, both Jewish and Christian, as borrowers and creditors.
---. 1988. "Women and Credit in the Middle Ages: Problems and Directions." The Journal of European Economic History 17(1): 33-62. Pp. 46-7 have information on the Jewish female lender in medieval Europe.
---. 1993. Women and Credit in Pre-Industrial and Developing Societies. Philadelphia: U. of Pennsylvania P. Part one emphasizes the importance of Jewish women moneylenders/pawnbrokers all over medieval Europe.
Lamdan, Ruth. 1996. "Child Marriage in Jewish Society in the Eastern Mediterranean during the Sixteenth Century." Mediterranean Historical Review. 11(1): 37-59. Contains sections on the father's authority and child marriage, the reasons for the early age of marriage, and the results of child marriages. Uses material from the responsa literature.
Marcus, Ivan. 1986. "Mothers, Martyrs, and Moneymakers: Some Jewish Women in Medieval Europe." Conservative Judaism 38 (3): 34-45.
Marcus, Jacob R. 1974/1938. The Jew in the Medieval World. A Source Book: 315-1791. New York: Atheneum. Three sections pp. 142-145, 302-303, and 389-393 deal with medieval women.
Marin Padilla, Encarnacion. 1992. "Inutil rebeldia de Ceti Leredi en relacion con su matrimonio (siglo XV)." Sefarad 52 (2): 501-512. Describes the nonconformist Ceti Leredi who tried to rebel against her marriage.
Melammed, Renee Levine. 1986. "The Ultimate Challenge: Safeguarding the Crypto-Judaic Heritage." American Academy for Jewish Research: Proceedings. 53: 91-109. Lists the characteristics of the transmission of knowledge of Judaism through Spanish records of the trials of 111 women charged with Judaizing between 1492 and 1520.
---. 1986. "Sixteenth Century Justice in Action: the Case of Isabel Lopez." Revue des etudes juives 145: 51-73. The report of the trial of a conversa, Isabel Lopez. A popular version of this case is, "Legajo 162: The Rediscovered Case of Isabel Lopez, Burned at the Stake November 30, 1518," by Claudia Wise with Susan Schnur, Lilith vol. 17, no 3, Summer 1992, 18-24.
---. 1991. "Sephardi Women in the Medieval and Early Modern Periods." In Jewish Women in Historical Perspective. Ed. Judith Baskin. Detroit: Wayne State U.P. 115-134. In a general overview of many aspects of the lives of Sephardi women, material on crypto-Jewish women is included.
---. 1991. "Some Death and Mourning Customs of Castilian Conversas." In Exile and Diaspora. Ed. A. Mirsky, A. Grossman, Y. Kaplan. Jerusalem. Describes some mourning customs observed by crypto-Jewish women in Spain at the turn of the sixteenth century.
---. 1992. "Women in (Post-1492) Spanish Crypto-Jewish Society." Judaism 41.2: 156-168. Discusses the level of Jewish observances of two families of Alcazar.
---. 1994. "A Sixteenth-Century Castilian Midwife and her Encounter with the Inquisition." In The Expulsion of the Jews: 1492 and after." Ed. Raymond Waddington and Arthur Williamson. New York and London: Garland. 53-72. Analyses and expands on accounts of the investigations of the Inquisition between 1514 and 1563 of a Castilian conversa midwife, Beatriz Rodriguez, who was accused of Judaizing.
---. 1997. "He Said, She Said: A Woman Teacher in Twelfth-Century Cairo." AJS Review 22 (1): 19-35. A detailed discussion of two Maimonidean responsa dealing with a woman teacher and her controversy with her husband.
Mordtmann, J[ohannes] H[einrich]. 1929. "Die juedischin Kira im Serai der Sultane." Mitteilungen des Seminars fuer Orientalische Sprachen zu Berlin. Zweite Abteilung - Westasiatische Studien. XXXII (32): 1-38. About three women named Kira in the court of the Sultan of Turkey in the sixteenth century.
Neuman, Abraham A. 1942. The Jews in Spain. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society. 2 vols. 2: 19-63. Includes sections on courtship and marriage, marriage customs and ceremonies, and domestic life.
Nirenberg, David. 1991. "A Female Rabbi in Fourteenth Century Zaragoza?" Sefarad 51: 179-182. An archival document from the Crown of Aragon in 1325 reports on a plea from Ceti, Jewess, rabbess. Various possibilities of the meaning of "rabbess" are discussed.
Noble, Shlomo. 1971. "The Jewish Woman in Medieval Martyrology." In Studies in Jewish Bibliography, History and Literature in Honor of I. Edward Kiev. Ed. Charles Berlin. New York: Ktav. 347-355. Emphasizes the crucial role played by Jewish women in their communities' resistance during the Crusades.
Oliveri, Fabio. 1994. "Jewish Women in Ancient and Medieval Sicily. Eleventh World Congress of Jewish Studies: Proceedings (1993). Division B, Vol. I, 130-134 (English section). Using material from the Sicilian archives, Oliveri discusses sexual activity, marriage relationships, and their faithfulness to Judaism of medieval Jewish Sicilian women.
Olla Repetto, Gabriella. 1988. "La Donna Ebrea a Cagliari nel '400 [The Jewish Woman in Cagliari in the 1400s]. Anuario de Estudios Medievales. 18: 551-562. Contains material from the state and city archives on the social and marital status of Jewish women in fifteenth-century Cagliari, Sardinia.
Rokeah, Zefira Entin. 1973. "Some Accounts of Condemned Jews' Property in the Pipe and Chancellor's Rolls." Bulletin of the Institute of Jewish Studies. 1: 19-42. Accounts in the Latin original of property confiscated from Jews convicted of coinage offences, many of whom were women, by the English government in the 1270's.
Scherr, Lilly. 1976. "La femme juive a travers les siecles, III Le moyen age." Les nouveaux cahiers 46: 28-31. Discusses divorce, abandonment, business dealings, education, and religious rights of medieval Ashkenazic women.
Seror, Simon. 1995. "Les noms des femmes juives en Angleterre au moyen age." Revue des etudes juives. 154: 295-325. Names of Jewish women in medieval England as found in tallage lists and Hebrew documents.
Shatzmiller, Joseph. 1992. "Une 'matriarche' juive au tournant du XIVe siecle: Rosa de Grassa." In Femmes Mariages-Lignages XIIe-XIVe siecles: Melanges offerts a Georges Duby. Bruxelles: De Boeck Universite. 325-340. A description of several incidents in the life of a Jewish woman including information on family and business relationships and interaction with the surrounding community as found in archival documents.
Stillman, Yedida K. 1974. "The Wardrobe of a Jewish Bride in Medieval Egypt." In Studies in Marriage Customs. Ed. I. Ben-Ami and D. Noy. Folklore Research Center Studies IV. Jerusalem: Magnes P. 297-304. Describes women's garments mentioned in the trousseau lists of the Cairo Genizah.
---. 1976. "The Importance of the Cairo Geniza Manuscripts for the History of Medieval Female Attire." International Journal of Middle East Studies. 7: 579-589. Uses trousseau lists to describe and put into historical perspective, patterns, textiles, and garments worn by Jewish women in the Fatimid, Ayyubid, and Mamluk periods (969-1517 C.E.).
Stouff, Louis. 1987. "Isaac Nathan et les siens. Une famille juive d'Arles des XIVe et XVe siecles" [Isaac Nathan and his relations. A Jewish family of Arles during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries]. provence historique 150: 499-512. Includes a description of Venguessona, mother of Isaac Nathan, as a money lender, merchant, and owner of both Hebrew and Latin books.
Stow, Kenneth and Sandra Debenedetti Stow. 1986. "Donne ebree a Roma nell'eta del ghetto [Jewish Women in Rome at the time of the establishment of the Ghetto]." La Rassegna Mensile di Israel 52: 63-116. A description of cases in the archives dealing with the social life of women and children in sixteenth-century Rome.
Stow, Kenneth. 1987. "The Jewish Family in the Rhineland in the High Middle Ages: Form and Function." American Historical Review 92: 1085-1110. Describes the medieval Jewish Ashkenazic woman as a family member, wife, and sexual partner.
---. 1995. "Marriages are Made in Heaven: Marriage and the Individual in the Roman Jewish Ghetto." Renaissance Quarterley 48(3): 445-491. Contrasts the rights of Jewish women to that of Christian women in terminating engagements in sixteenth-century Rome.
Taitz, Emily. 1992. "Women's Voices, Women's Prayers: Women in European Synagogues of the Middle Ages." In Daughters of the King Ed. Susan Grossman and Rivka Haut. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society.
Tallan, Cheryl. 1987-1988. "Medieval Jewish Women in History, Law, Literature, and Art: A Bibliography." Medieval Feminist Newsletter 4: 9-10; 5: 28; 6: 24-25.
---. 1990. "The Position of the Medieval Jewish Widow as a Function of Family Structure." Tenth World Congress of Jewish Studies (1989): Proceedings. Division B, Vol. II, 91-98. From a study of the widow and her relationship to her family, this article raises the possibility of a slight shift in family structure from a slightly bilateral form to a more patriarchal one.
---. 1990. "Medieval Jewish Widows." Jewish Folklore and Ethnology Review. 12.1-2: 34.
---. 1991. "Medieval Jewish Widows: Their Control of Resources." Jewish History. 5.1: 63-74. Outlines the sources of widows' income, from work and from family assets.
---. 1992. "Opportunities for Medieval Northern-European Jewish Widows in the Public and Domestic Spheres." In Upon My Husband's Death: Widows in the Literature and Histories of Medieval Europe. Ed. Louise Mirrer. Ann Arbor: U. of Michigan P. 115-127.
---. 1994. "The Economic Productivity of the Medieval Jewish Widow." Eleventh World Congress of Jewish Studies: Proceedings (1993). Division B, Volume I, 151-158 (English section). Details several ways of earing income by medieval Jewish widows and discusses the effects of both religion and gender on these work roles.
Toch, Michael. 1993. "Die judische Frau im Erwerbsleben des Spatmittelalters [The Jewish Woman in the Working World of the late middle ages]." In Geschichte der judischen Frau in Deutschland. Hrsg. Julius Carlebach. Berlin: Metropol-Verl. 37-48. Portrays women as moneylenders, servants, doctors and midwives, and active in printing, food and textile production, prostitutes and other underworld figures in fourteenth and fifteenth century Germany.
Uitz, Erika. 1990. Women in the Medieval Town. London: Barrie & Jenkins. The Legend of Good Women. Trans. Sheila Marnie. Mount Kisko NY: Moyer Bell. Contains information on women in late-medieval towns: pp. 67-68, Jewish women doctors; p. 116, Jewish women lenders; p. 98, Jewish woman giving home for a school.
Wallach-Faller, Marianne. 1985. "Veranderungen im Status der Judischen Frau [Changes in the Status of the Jewish Woman]. 3. Der Status der judischen Frau im Mittelalter [The Status of the Jewish Woman in the Middle Ages]." Judaica 41(3): 160-167. Compares Jewish women with Christian and Moslem women in areas of family rights and service to God.
Wernham, Monique. 1987. La Communate Juive de Salon-de-Provence d'apres les Actes Notaries 1391-1435. Toronto: PIMS Studies and Texts 82. Contains material on marriage contracts, pps. 136-37 has information on women moneylenders.
Literature: Writing and Printing by WomenBreger, Jennifer. 1993. "The Role of Jewish Women in Hebrew Printing." A Bookman's Weekly. 91.13: 1320-1329. Includes information about scribes, printers, patrons from the thirteenth to the twentieth centuries.
Burns, Robert Ignatius. 1996. Jews in the Notarial Culture: Latinate Wills in Mediterranean Spain 1250-1350. Berkeley: U. of California P. Includes some women's wills, from both wives and widows, discusses some women's wills from the Geniza also.
Gil, Moshe, ed. 1976. Documents of the Jewish Pious Foundations from the Cairo Geniza. Leiden: Brill. Contains two women's wills, that of a pious woman written in 1006, pp. 119-127, and that of the wife of a scholar, pp. 270-274, written in 1151.
Goitein, Shelomo D. 1967-1993. A Mediterranean Society. 6 vols. Berkeley: U. of California P. Vol. 3, pp. 115, 117, 175-176, 186, 193-194, 197, 217-218, 353-354, contains letters written by or dictated by women. Vol. 5, pp. 146-147, the will of a pious woman, pp. 153-155, the will the wife of a scholar, pp. 468-470, a poem by the wife of Dunash ibn Labrat.
Gutwirth, Eleazar. 1985. "A Judeo-Spanish letter from the Genizah." In Judeo-Romance Languages, ed. Isaac Benabu and J. Sermoneta. Jerusalem: The Hebrew University and Misgav Yerushalayim. 127-138. A detailed description and translation of a letter written in Judeo-Spanish to a son in Cairo from a mother in sixteenth-century Safed.
---. 1986. "The Family in the Judeo-Spanish Genizah Letters of Cairo (XVIto XVIIIth C.)." Vierteljahrschrift fur Sozial- und Wirtschaftsgesichte 73.2: 210-215.
Henry, Sondra and Emily Taitz. 1990. Written out of History: Our Jewish Foremothers. 3rd ed. rev. Sunnyside NY: Biblio P. Contains poems 62-64, 127-130; religious writings, 92-100, 130-132.
Kobler, Franz, ed. 1953. A Treasury of Jewish Letters. 2 vols. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society. Vol. 1, pp. 145-146, 233-234; vol. 2, pp. 364-367, 391-392, 464-474, are letters from women.
Kracauer, I. 1916. "Ein juedisches Testament aus dem Jahre 1470." Monatsschrift fuer Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judentums 60: 295-301. The will of the Jewess, Ryke of Frankfurt, written on the 9th of November, 1470.
Kraemer, Joel. 1991. "Spanish Ladies from the Cairo Genizah." Mediterranean Historical Review 6.2: 237-67. Includes letters from wife to husband, daughter to father, mother to son, sister to brother, daughter-in-law to mother- and father-in-law by people from Sefardic families who left Spain after 1492.
Landau, Alfred and Bernhard Wachstein, Hrsgs. 1911. Judische Privatbriefe aus dem Jahre 1619. Wein und Liepzig: Wilhelm Braumuller. Contains the original letters in Hebrew and Yiddish and translations and transcriptions of 47 letters, many by women, sent from Prague to Vienna in November, 1619.
Mann, Jacob. 1970/1931. Texts and Studies in Jewish History and Literature. Israel: n.p. vol. 1, pt. 2. 505-15.
Nichols, James. 1981. "The Arabic Verses of Qasmunah bint Ismail ibn Bagdala." International Journal of Middle East Studies. 13: 155-158. Information and poems of the twelfth-century Spanish Jewish poet, Qasmuna.
Sirat, Colette. 1990. "Les femmes juives et l'ecriture au Moyen Age." Les nouveaux cahiers 101: 14-23. Finds evidence from Egypt, 1000-1250, and from Europe, 1250 and later, that some Jewish women could write.
Spiegel, Marsha and Deborah Kremsdorf. 1987. Women Speak to God: The Prayers and Poems of Jewish Women. San Diego: Women's Institute for Continuing Jewish Education.
Umansky, Ellen and Dianne Ashton, eds. 1992. Four Centuries of Jewish Women's Spirituality: A Sourcebook. Boston: Beacon P. In the first section of this book, writings from 1560-1800, there are some interesting letters and poetry by women in Renaissance and early modern Europe.
Images of Jewish Women in LiteratureAdelman, Howard. 1990. "Images of Women in Italian Jewish Literature in the Late Middle Ages." Tenth World Congress of Jewish Studies: Proceedings (1989). Division B, Volume II, 99-106. Examines works from several genres of Italian Hebrew literature about women and compares them with Italian halakhic texts, works about Jewish women in medieval Spain, and contemporaneous Italian literature on women.
---. 1994. "Finding Women's Voices in Italian Jewish Literature." In Women of the Word: Jewish Women and Jewish Writing. Ed. Judith Baskin. Detroit: Wayne State U.P. 50-69. Analyzes descriptions of women by Italian Jewish authors from the late middle ages to the nineteenth century also mentions some women writers including Rachel Mopurgo.
Aizenberg, Edna. 1984. "Una Judia muy Fermosa: The Jewess as Sex Object in Medieval Spanish Literature and Lore." La Coronica 12.2: 187-194. Illustrates the Jewess as sex object in certain medieval Spanish texts under the headings of prohibition, domination, and sexualization with reference to Foucault's History of Sexuality and other theoretical considerations.
Baskin, Judith. 1994. "From Separation to Displacement: The Problem of Women in Sefer Hasidim." AJS Review 19.1: 1-18. Stresses the German pietists' concern with illicit liaisons and some of the reasons for it.
---. 1995. "Images of Women in Sefer Hasidim. In Mysticism, Magic, and Kabbala in Ashkenazi Judaism: International Symposium held in Frankfurt a. m. 1991. Ed. Karl E. Grozinger and Joseph Dan. Berlin: Walter de Gruyter. 93-105. A shorter version of the article in the AJS Review.
Bellamy, James A. 1983. "Qasmunah the Poetess: Who Was She?" Journal of the American Oriental Society 103: 423-4. Identifies Qasmunah as the daughter of Isma`il b. Naghrilla, i.e., Samuel ha-Nagid (933-1055 or 1056).
Bitton-Jackson, Livia. 1981. Madonna or Courtesan? The Jewish Woman in Christian Literature. New York: Seabury P. Gives information on the medieval Jewish women both in literature and in history.
Dishon, Judith. 1994. "Images of Women in Medieval Hebrew Literature." In Women of the Word: Jewish Women and Jewish Writing. Ed. Judith Baskin. Detroit: Wayne State U.P. 17-49. Investigates the images of women in the secular Hebrew literature of the middle ages including maqamat, tales, and short stories.
Fishman, Talya. 1988. "A Medieval Parody of Misogyny: Judah ibn Shabbetai's 'Minhat Yehudah sone hanashim'" [The offering of Judah the Misogynist]. Prooftexts 8: 89-111. Describes an early Hebrew example of a theme found in often in medieval eastern literature, the "wiles of women".
Green, Arthur. 1983. "Bride, Spouse, Daughter: Images of the Feminine in Classical Jewish Sources." In On Being a Jewish Feminist. Ed. Susannah Heschel. New York: Schocken. 248-260.
Mirrer, Louise. 1996. "The Beautiful Jewess: Marisaltos in Alfonso X's Cantiga 107." In eadem, Women, Jews and Muslims in the Texts of Reconquist Spain. Ann Arbor MI: U. of Michigan P. 31-44. The depiction of the deliverance and conversion of a Jewess by the Virgin Mary.
Rosen, Tova. 1988. "On Tongues Being Bound and Let Loose: Women in Medieval Hebrew Literature." Prooftexts 8: 67-87. Describes the "mute beauty" in male love lyrics, the "garrulous shrew" in Maqama literatue, the bride's speech in wedding poems, and the Kharjas as "maiden songs".
Roth, Norman. 1978. "The 'Wiles of Women' Motif in the Medieval Hebrew Literature of Spain." Hebrew Annual Revue 2: 145-165.
---. 1982. "The Kahina: Legendary Material in the Accounts of the 'Jewish Berber Queen'." The Magreb Review 7 (5&6): 122-125. Discusses various treatments of the Kahina story and the mythical elements in them.
Scheindlin, Raymond. 1986. Wine, Women, & Death. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society. On pages 77-89 Scheindlin outlines characteristics of the genre of Jewish love poetry from Spain of the tenth- to twelfth-century, on pages 90-134 he gives a selection of those poems and discusses them.
LawBiale, Rachel. 1984. Women and Jewish Law. New York: Schocken. Contains information on rulings affecting women by medieval rabbis.
Falk, Ze'ev. 1966. Jewish Matrimonial Law in the Middle Ages. London: Oxford U.P. Describes medieval Jewish law and practice in areas of monogamy, the matrimonial match, divorce, and the status of woman.
Feldman, David. 1974/1968. Marital Relations, Birth Control, and Abortion in Jewish Law. New York: Schocken Books. Among material from the third to the twentieth centuries, the rulings of many medieval Jewish sages are given.
Friedman, Mordechai A. 1972. "The Monogamy Clause in Jewish Marriage Contracts." Perspectives in Learning 4: 20-40. A detailed account of elements of marriage contracts in the medieval Jewish Egyptian community.
Morrell, Samuel. 1982. "An Equal or a Ward." Jewish Social Studies 44: 189-210. Discusses the legal capacities of a married woman from Talmudic to early modern times.
Riskin, Shlomo. 1989. Women and Jewish Divorce. Hoboken NJ: Ktav. 47-133. A discussion of the rulings issued between 700 to 1564 C.E. on the moredet, the rebellious wife, on the agunah, the deserted wife, and on the right of women to initiate divorce.
MedicineBarkai, Ron. 1991. Les Infortunes de Dinah: Le Livre de la Generation. Tr. J. Barnavi. Paris: Cerf. Contains two sections: a survey of medieval Jewish writings on the nature of woman, her anatomy, sexuality, fertility and pregnancy, and treatment of female illnesses; the Hebrew original and a translation into French of Sefer Toledet, a treatment of a Greek gynecological text by Soranus of Ephesus.
Cardoner Planas, A. 1949. "Seis mujeres hebreas practicando la medicina en el reino de Aragon." Sefarad 9.2: 441-445. Lists midwives and women doctors practising medicine in the Crown of Aragon during the fourteenth century.
Friedenwald, Harry. 1944. "Jewish Doctoresses in the Middle Ages." In The Jews and Medicine. 2 vols. rpt. New York: Ktav, 1967. 1: 217-220. Lists Jewish women practicing medicine in Paris, Montpellier, Germany, Italy, and Turkey from 1292 to 1603.
Lopez de Meneses, Amada. 1957. "Cinco Catalanas Licenciades en Medicina por Pedro Ceremonioso (1374-1382)." Correo Erudito V, No. 37: 252-254. Four Jewish women licenced to practice medicine in Catalonia.
Segre, Marcello. 1970. "Dottoresse ebree nel medioevo [The Jewish Woman Doctor in the Middle Ages]." Pagina di storia della medicina 14.5: 98-106. Lists the Jewish women doctors active in Italy and in other European countries.
Shatzmiller, Joseph. 1992. "Femmes medecins au Moyen Age. Temoignages sur leurs pratiques. (1250-1350)" Histoire et societe, Melanges offerts a Georges Duby, I: Le couple, l'ami et le prochain. Aix-en-Provence: n.p. 165-175. Contains information on Jewish women doctors who received a kind of partial authorization.
---. 1994. "Women in the Medical Profession." In idem, Jews, Medicine, and Medieval Society. Berkeley: U. of California P. 108-112. Lists medieval female Jewish doctors in Provence, Spain, Sicily, and Italy who worked as opthalmologists, surgeons, gynecologists and obstetricians, and in general medicine.
ArtGutmann, Joseph. 1978. Hebrew Manuscript Painting. New York: George Braziller. Some Biblical women, such as Miriam and Ruth, and some women from medieval Jewish life are portrayed.
---. 1989. "Jewish Medieval Marriage Customs in Art: Creativity and Adaptation." In The Jewish Family: Metaphore and Memory. Ed. David Kraemer. New York: Oxford U. P. 47-62. Includes two illustrations of the wedding ceremony from a prayer book of the Italian rite of 1481.
Feuchtwanger, Naomi. 1986-87. "The Coronation of the Virgin and the Bride." Jewish Art 12/13: 213-24. The custom of placing a crown or wreath on the head of a bride in medieval Germany is depicted in many pictures of the bridal couple in prayer books for the middle of the thirteenth to the late fourteenth centuries.
Friedenberg, Daniel. 1987. Medieval Jewish Seals from Europe. Detroit: Wayne State U. P. Seals portraying women are on pages 79, 137-38, 198.
Haraszti-Takacs, Marianne. 1989. "Fifteenth-Century Painted Furniture with Scenes from the Esther Story." Jewish Art 15: 14-25. Scenes from the Esther story including some from midrashic commentaries to Esther on panels and wedding chests which were commissioned by Jewish patrons include female figures.
Metzger, Mendel. 1973. La Haggada enluminee. I Leiden: E.J. Brill. Contains illuminations from Haggadot of the thirteenth to the seventeenth centuries, a few of these illuminations portray women.
Metzger, Therese and Mendel Metzger. 1982. Jewish Life in the Middle Ages. Illuminated Hebrew Manuscripts of the Thirteenth to the Sixteenth Centuries. New York: Fine Art Book. Many aspects of women's lives, e.g. childbirth, are portrayed.
Narkiss, Bezalel. 1969. Hebrew Illuminated Manuscripts. New York: Keter. On p. 126 is found the illustration of women reading and learning from the Darmstadt Haggadah. Other women are seen in the plates on pages 57, 69, 70, 85, 87, 89, 102, 108, 119, 121, 122, 140, 142, 144, 148, 152, and 159.
---. 1982. Hebrew Illuminated Manuscripts in the British Isles. Vol. I, The Spanish and Portugese Manuscripts: pt. 1 Text, pt. 2 Plates. Jerusalem and London: Oxford U. P. In the plates from illustrated Haggadot mainly from fourteenth century Spain, many women are depicted including Miriam, Eve, Lot's daughters, also participants in seders.
Narkiss, Mordechai. 1958. "An Italian Niello Casket of the Fifteenth Century". Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes 20-21: 288-295. On a silver plate attached to the front of the casket three women are portrayed observing the commandments of hallah, niddah, and hadlakat ha-ner.
Sabar, Shalom. 1990. "Bride and Courtesan: Images of the Jewish Woman in Hebrew Manuscripts of Renaissance Italy." Tenth World Congress of Jewish Studies, Proceedings, Jerusalem, Division D, Volume II, pp. 63-70.
Sed-Rajna, Gabrielle. 1987. The Hebrew Bible in Medieval Illuminated Manuscripts. New York: Rizzoli. In addition to portraits of women in "The Women of Worth" chapter, pps. 147-154, other women are also depicted in illuminations from thirteenth- to fifteenth-century German, French, Spanish, and Italian manuscripts.
Schubert, Kurt, Hrsg. 1978. Judentum im Mittelalter. Eisenstadt: Kulturabt. des Amtes d. Bgld. Catalogue of an exhibition in Schloss Halbturn. A few of the illustrations portray women.
Schultz, Magdalena. 1988. "Das Bild der Frau in mittelalterlichen hebraeischen Handschriften." In Frauenalltag-Frauenforschung: Beitraege zur 2. Tagung der Kommission Frauenforschung in der Deutschen Gesellschaft fuer Volkskunde, Freiburg, 22-25, Mai 1986. Frankfurt am Main: Verlag Peter Lang.
Wigoder, Geoffrey, ed. 1977. Jewish Art and Civilization. Fribourg: Chartwell. Some plates illustrating medieval women during holidays and at festive occasions, especially in Italy.
Wischnitzer, Rachel. 1960. "The Esther Story in Art." In The Purim Anthology. Ed. Philip Goodman. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society. 224-228. Compares the depiction of Esther in Jewish and Christian art around the turn of the thirteenth century.
MusicHarran, Don. 1995. "Madama Europa, Jewish Singer in Late Renaissance Mantua." Festa Musicologica: Essays in Honor of George J. Buelow. Ed. Thomas J. Mathiesen and Benito V. Rivera. Stuyvesant NY: Pendragon P. 197-231. An account of all the information that is known about this professional singer.
---. 1996. "Doubly Tainted, Doubly Talented: The Jewish Poet Sara Copio (d. 1641) as a Heroic Singer." In Musica Franca: Essays in Honor of Frank A. D'Accone. Ed. Irene Alm, Alyson McLamore, and Colleen Reardon. Stuyvesant NY: Pendragon P. 367-422. Concentrates on Sara as a singer of epic poetry.
Heskes, Irene. 1994. "Miriam's Sisters: Jewish Women and Liturgical Music." In eadem, Passport to Jewish Music: Its History, Traditions and Culture. Westport CN: Greenwood P. 325-334. The same article is found under the same title in [Music Library Association] Notes. 1992. 48(4): 1193-1202. Musical activities of medieval women are found on pp. 328-331 of the book.
Sendrey, Alfred. 1970. The Music of the Jews in the Diaspora (up to 1800). New York: Thomas Yoseloff. Women making music are mentioned on pages 98, 104, 227-8, 257, and 330. These include juglaresas, wailing women, female hazzanim, and 16th and early 17th Italian singers.
Taitz, Emily. 1986. "Kol Ishah - The Voice of the Woman: Where was it heard in medieval Europe." Conservative Judaism 38(3): 46-61. Describes women in music, as mourners, and participants in the religous service.
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