As a poet and essayist, my work is rooted in the impact feminism has had on my life as a man, particularly as a survivor of childhood sexual violence. As a literary co-translator, I write about the relevance of classical Persian poetry to our contemporary lives.
Twenty years or so ago, not too long after I first started teaching at the college where I am still a professor, one of my colleagues–the woman who started the institution’s Jewish Studies Project–tried to start a Black-Jewish dialogue on campus. It was not successful. One reason, I think, was structural. In my memory the idea for the […]
Today is Shabbat Nachamu, the Sabbath of Consolation. Last year at this time, I was on a family vacation in Europe, sitting in our host’s dining room in Sweden, early in the morning while everyone else was still asleep, and writing the fourth in a series of letters to Jonathan Penton about racism and antisemitism. […]
Reading “The Veil and The Male Élite: A Feminist Interpretation of Women’s Rights in Islam,” by Fatima Mernissi
About two-and-a-half years ago, I posted about Mernissi’s book because reading it was an instructive journey into my own ignorance about Islam, particularly about an aspect of that religion that, to put it mildly, sticks in the craw of many, many people in the west: the veil. My plan at the time was to read her […]