The ‘Body Text’ exhibition seeks to highlight aspects common to feminist artists who create within different cultural and religious realms in Israel. Despite their cultural and religious diversity, they are at times perceived as much closer to each other than men and women sharing the same religion or culture. The exhibition presents the voices and faces of the participating artists in the ‘video text’ film clips through which we seek to reveal additional layers of interpretation, and to emphasize both the similarity and difference between the artworks, the artists, and the diverse worlds in which they operate. 

Chairwomen's Greetings

The combination of feminism and religion is neither self-evident nor easy to digest. The objections to it arise from both sides of the divide: religionists tend to view feminism as a faulty ideology with destructive potential for long-established socio-religious orders, and feminists as responsible for the loss of family values and the disintegration of gender identities. On the other hand, liberal western feminism, widely associated with secularism, regards religion as a patriarchal structure to be fought, and therefore considers religious feminism to be an oxymoron that compromises with and submits to repressive religious structures of power. Nevertheless, despite both the internal and external opposition, religious feminism is gaining in strength and spreading, even registering notable achievements to such an extent that some classify it as today’s most prominent feminist movement.

At this international conference, we wish to present the complex dilemmas facing religious feminism in the three religions, to explore their similarities and differences, and to examine the strategies that may create a broad base for collaboration and mutual learning. It is our hope that the common values revealed at the conference will result in profound understanding and greater possibilities for research and practical endeavor.

The conference is accompanied by an exhibition by Jewish, Muslim, Christian and Druze artists. In keeping with the nature of art, it presents an avant-garde and incisive view of social reality and refines questions addressed in academic discussions.

We wish all the conference participants that by learning about the three religions’ differences and diversity we may succeed to identify our broad common denominator and initiate collaborations as part of the ongoing struggle for gender equality and justice for women in the religious world.

Prof. Ruth Halperin-Kaddari and Dr. Ronit Irshai
Conference Chairwomen

Donors' Greetings, Mr. & Mrs. Tager

We are proud to be involved with this conference and wish to pay credit to Professor Ruth Halperin-Kaddari, Dr. Ronit Irshai, and their colleagues for organizing such an important event. Religion and feminism are closely connected, and indeed should not be regarded as a contradiction in terms. There is much more that unites the three religions than that which divides them. Sadly, discrimination against women, whether in the realm of personal status, through violence or the experience of silencing their voices is endemic in all these religions. Art represents a powerful means of expressing difficulties and conflicts yet frequently, women have been and still are excluded.

We are very grateful to Dr David Sperber and Nurit Jacobs-Yinon for curating this wonderful body of work by 13 Jewish, Muslim, Christian and Druze artists on the theme of religious feminism, which will be permanently accessible on the web and will empower women to voice their concerns and emotions. We wish the conference much success,
Esther and Romie Tager,
London

University President's Greetings

I welcome the visitors to the international conference on ‘Feminism in the Abrahamic Religions’, that is being conducted with the help of our loyal partners Esther and Romie Tager, Chairman of the British Friends of Bar-Ilan University. We thank you for this important initiative and for all your support for the Law Faculty and the university’s endeavors. I am truly happy that you could join us today.

“Real change, enduring change, happens one step at a time”, said the Jewish US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Z”L, a woman who became the symbol of the struggle for human rights and women’s rights in the United States. Last September, we said goodbye to this remarkable woman who achieved her successes one step at a time, but did so with perseverance, tirelessly and with inspiring determination.

The same determination can be seen in the work of the Rackman Center for the Advancement of Women’s Status at Bar Ilan University which has been promoting women’s rights for more than 40 years, and in the Program for Gender Studies at the university’s Interdisciplinary Studies Unit. Religions and law play a central role in shaping the attitudes and opinions that influence the status of women in society, and these bodies, characterized by committed and professional leadership, integrate these two fields – law and religion – and advance issues related to women’s rights and the legal equality of women.

Religions are highly influential in forming the attitudes towards the status of women, an issue that features constantly on the global public agenda. With this conference, and the fascinating accompanying exhibition, we are taking a further important step on the path to creating changes that influence and will continue to influence the State of Israel and the society in which we live, for the better.

Best wishes for much success,
Arie Zaban
President, Bar Ilan University    

The Conference

The exhibition ‘Body Text: Feminist Art in Diverse Religio-Cultural Spheres in Israel’ ‘was curated by Nurit Jacobs-Yinon and Dr. David Sperber and is presented as part of the Tager International Conference – ‘Feminism in the Abrahamic Religions: Dilemmas of Gender and Law from a Multicultural Perspective’. The conference is hosted by the Rackman Center operating within the framework of the Faculty of Law of Bar-Ilan University, in conjunction with the Program for Gender Studies at Bar-Ilan University and the Center for the Study of Relations between Jews, Christians, and Muslims of the Open University of Israel.

Conference Chairwomen: Prof. Ruth Halperin-Kaddari and Dr. Ronit Irshai

Conference Steering Committee Members: Dr. Nahed Ashkar Sharary, Prof. Avriel Bar-Levav, Dr. Cochav Elkayam-Levy, Adv. Keren Horowitz, Nurit Jacobs-Yinon, Dr. Hagar Lahav, Dr. Barbara Meyer, Dr. David Sperber, Dr. Tanya Zion-Waldoks

Conference Coordinator: Dr. Tom Rolef Ben-Shahar

Credits

The conference and exhibition were made possible thanks to the generous donation of Esther and Romie Tager from London, longstanding friends and supporters of the Rackman Center and of the Law Faculty of Bar-Ilan University and has been supported financially by the Program for Gender Studies at Bar Ilan University and the Center for the Study of Relations between Jews, Christians, and Muslims of the Open University of Israel.

The virtual exhibition ‘Body Text: Feminist Art in Diverse Religio-Cultural Spheres in Israel’ was curated by Nurit Jacobs-Yinon and Dr. David Sperber, and is presented as part of the Tager International Conference – ‘Feminism in the Abrahamic Religions: Dilemmas of Gender and Law from a Multicultural Perspective’.

The conference is hosted by the Ruth and Emanuel Rackman Center for the Advancement of Women operating within the framework of the Faculty of Law of Bar-Ilan University, in conjunction with the Gender Studies Program at Bar-Ilan University.

Conference Chairwomen: Prof. Ruth Halperin-Kaddari and Dr. Ronit Irshai
Conference Steering Committee Members: Dr. Nahed Ashkar Sharary, Prof. Avriel Bar-Levav, Dr. Cochav Elkayam-Levy, Adv. Keren Horowitz, Nurit Jacobs-Yinon, Dr. Hagar Lahav, Dr. Barbara Meyer, Dr. David Sperber, Dr. Tanya Zion-Waldoks
Conference Coordinator: Dr. Tom Rolef Ben-Shahar

The conference and exhibition were made possible thanks to the generous donation of Esther and Romie Tager from London, longstanding friends and supporters of the Rackman Center and of the Law Faculty of Bar-Ilan University and has been supported financially by the Gender Studies Program at Bar-Ilan University and the Center for the Study of Relations between Jews, Christians, Muslim, the Open University of Israel.

‘Body Text: Feminist Art in Diverse Religio-Cultural Spheres in Israel’ – Virtual Exhibition:

Artists:
Hanan Abu-Hussein, Fatma Abu-Roumi, Raida Adon, Andi Arnovitz, Itzik Badash, Nechama Golan, Doris Hakim, Shula Keshet, Yara Kassem Mahajena, Ruth Schreiber, Yael Serlin, Dafna Shalom, Amira Ziyan

Curatorship and Production: Nurit Jacobs-Yinon and Dr. David Sperber

Design and Website Construction:  Studio Josef
         CEO, Studio Josef: Josef Dalal
         Web Design and Characterization: Elisheva  Lytvynov
         Web Development and Construction: Yehudit Sloushch
         Web Design: Neta Feldman

Hebrew/English Translation and Editing: In Other Words: Translation & Editing Services, 
         Hadas Ahituv and Jeremy Kuttner

Arabic Translation: Ruba Sima’an, Glocal

‘Video Text’:

Photography: Elad Peretz, David Atsmi
Editing: Elad Peretz
Assistant Producer: Ido Sivan
Translation and Subtitles: NG Subtitling
Director and Producer: Nurit Jacobs-Yinon, ‘Aluma Films’

© 2021. All Rights Reserved: ‘Body Text’ exhibition; Nurit Jacobs-Yinon and David Sperber

invitation-Body-Text-english