- For our wives
- Introduction: Why Study Jewish Ethics?
- Jewish Ethical Theories
- Ethical Theory and Practice in the Hebrew Bible
- Ethical Theories in Rabbinic Literature
- Ethical Theories in Jewish Mystical Writings
- Ethical Theories among Medieval Jewish Philosophers
- Spinoza and Jewish Ethics
- Mussar Ethics and Other Nineteenth-Century Jewish Ethical Theories
- Ethical Theories of Hermann Cohen, Franz Rosenzweig, and Martin Buber
- Ethical Theories of Mordecai Kaplan and Abraham Joshua Heschel
- Ethical Theories of Abraham Isaac Kook and Joseph B. Soloveitchik
- Ethical Implications of the Holocaust
- Ethical Theories in the Reform Movement
- Ethical Theories in the Conservative Movement
- Ethical Theories in the Orthodox Movement
- Ethical Theories in the Reconstructionist Movement
- Feminist Jewish Ethical Theories
- Postmodern Jewish Ethical Theories
- Topics in Jewish Morals
- Jewish Bioethics: The Beginning of Life
- Jewish Bioethics: The End of Life
- Jewish Bioethics: The Distribution of Health Care
- Jewish Bioethics: Current and Future Issues in Genetics
- Jewish Business Ethics
- Jewish Sexual Ethics
- Jewish Environmental Ethics: Intertwining Adam with Adamah
- Jewish Animal Ethics
- Jewish Ethics of Speech
- Jewish Political Ethics in America
- Jewish Political Ethics in Israel
- Judaism and Criminal Justice
- Jewish Ethics and War
- BIBLICAL SOURCES: RABBINIC AND SELECTED MEDIEVAL CITATIONS
- SUBJECT INDEX
Abstract and Keywords
This chapter discusses a few major concepts in Jewish sexual ethics. These include extramarital sex and marriage, consent and pleasure in contrast to the duty of both partners to satisfy each other sexually, the traditional requirement that a couple refrain from sexual relations during the woman's menstrual period, masturbation, procreation, same-sex relationships, and gender identity and sexuality. These issues are considered from the author's unique vantage point as both a Conservative rabbi and a feminist. As a Conservative rabbi, she is committed to the Jewish tradition and aware that it both has changed in the past and must be adjusted to respond to new scientific findings about sexual orientation and sexual practices, and new social conditions and moral sensitivities. As a feminist, the author probes that tradition for its biases against women, homosexuals, and transgender people.
Danya Ruttenberg is the author of Surprised By God: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Religion (Beacon Press), nominated for the 2010 Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish literature, and editor of The Passionate Torah: Sex and Judaism (2009) and Yentl’s Revenge: The Next Wave of Jewish Feminism. She is also co-editor, with Rabbi Elliot Dorff, of three books for the Jewish Publication Society’s Jewish Choices/Jewish Voices series: Sex and Intimacy; War and National Security; and Social Justice. In 2010 the Jewish Week named her one of the “36 Under 36” (the Jewish world’s 36 most influential leaders under age 36), and the Forward recognized her as one of the fifty most influential women rabbis. She serves as a contributing editor or on the advisory board to four publications: Sh’ma: A Journal of Jewish Responsibility, Jewschool.com, Lilith Magazine, and the academic journal Women and Judaism. She received her B.A. in Religious Studies from Brown University and an M.A. in Rabbinic Studies, as well as rabbinic ordination, from the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University. She currently serves as Senior Jewish Educator at Tufts University’s Hillel, and teaches and lectures nationwide.
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