“For There Is Hope: Gender and the Hebrew Bible,” an interfaith conference to honor the memory and legacy of Dr. Tikva Frymer-Kensky, will take place from 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. on Sunday, October 21 at The Jewish Theological Seminary, 3080 Broadway (at 122nd Street) in New York City.
The symposium will address the roles gender plays in the culture, literature, and study of the Hebrew Bible, with particular attention to the impact of Dr. Frymer-Kensky’s impassioned work in these areas to make the Bible relevant to all of its readers. In addition to presentations by nationally renowned Bible scholars, the event will feature a musical tribute by Debbie Friedman, award-winning singer, songwriter, and guitarist.
Committed to fostering meaningful religious experience, Dr. Frymer-Kensky worked to make ancient texts relevant and ethically informative for contemporary readers. She was committed to interfaith dialogue and to discovering humanistic values in ancient texts that would reach and inform a wide audience.
The faculty will include: Dr. Susan Ackerman, professor of Religion, Dartmouth College; Dr. Mary Boys, professor of Practical Theology, Union Theological Seminary; Dr. Tamara Cohn Eskenazi, professor of Bible, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion; Dr. Stephen Geller, professor of Bible, JTS; Rev. Dr. Katharine R. Henderson, executive vice president, Auburn Theological Seminary; Dr. Lori Lefkovitz, professor of Gender and Judaism, Reconstructionist Rabbinical College; Dr. Carol Meyers, professor in Religion, Duke University; Liz Swados, award-winning author, musician, director, and composer; and Dr. Jeffrey H. Tigay, professor of Hebrew and Semitic Languages and Literatures, University of Pennsylvania.
Dr. Frymer-Kensky (1943-2006) was an outstanding scholar of the Hebrew Bible and the ancient Near East. Combining rigorous scholarship and a feminist perspective, she offered new insights into ancient worlds and their texts that are powerfully relevant to a contemporary audience. Her books, which make major contributions to the study of biblical religion, literature, and feminist criticism, include In the Wake of the Goddesses: Women, Culture and the Biblical Transformation of Pagan Myth; Motherprayer: The Pregnant Woman’s Spiritual Companion, and Reading the Women of the Bible, which won the Koret Jewish Book Award in 2002 and a National Jewish Book Award in 2003. In 2006, the Jewish Publication Society published a collection of her articles, Studies in Bible and Feminist Criticism, and she was the first woman to have her work included in JPS's Scholar of Distinction series.
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