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ICJW Bea Zucker Calendar Study Series


Introduction Vea la Introducción en Español   

The ICJW Bea Zucker Calendar Study Series invites you to engage with the meaning and relevance of the entire annual cycle of Jewish festivals. Each unit guides study for individuals, learning partners or groups. The series is comprehensive—we explore the major holidays as well as less well-known ones, fasts and the commemorative dates on the Israeli calendar. We specially include women's observances such as Rosh Hodesh. We focus on the intersection of an ancient and evolving Jewish calendar with contemporary issues, our lives and choices.

The study units will accumulate monthly over the course of four years. These units contextualize the holidays, discuss their roots, raise questions for consideration, offer internet links for further inquiry, reflect about our methods, and summarize the issues raised. We also consider relevant food traditions, symbols, images, texts and observances associated with the festivals, including the readings from the biblical scrolls from a refreshing feminist perspective—Song of Songs, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes and Esther.

One of the unique aspects of the  ICJW Bea Zucker Calendar Study Series  is its commitment to supporting current feminist initiatives and fieldwork. With the intention to contribute cultural analysis and insight from Jewish tradition, units will relate to such areas as human trafficking, women’s health, discrimination against girls and women, equal pay, as well as related broad human concerns, such as the environment, interfaith, and political ideas. Classic Jewish sources and festivals are meaningful to current society and activism. 
This series will empower people to observe a Jewish lifestyle with passionate commitment to feminist social justice and action.
Launched in the season of Yom Ha'atzmaut—Israel Independence Day, Iyar 5774 - May 2014, the first part of the ICJW Bea Zucker Calendar Study Series was written by Dr. Bonna Devorah Haberman z"l, with the following units:
The course is currently being completed by Dr. Meesh Hammer-Kossoy, with the following units currently available.
Click here for other ICJW online courses on the Jewish Festivals, Biblical Women and Women's Life Cycle Events and the Bea Zucker Online Bible Study Course - the weekly parasha from a feminist perspective.

Dr. Bonna Devora Haberman passed away in June 20 15 after a long struggle with cancer. Many of her units for this course were written during her treatment. Click here to read our Tribute.