A New Song: Feminism, Music, and Voice in Partnership Minyanim.
Abstract: This thesis examines the relationship between music and
revolutionary changes in gender roles among "partnership minyanim," an international
network of Orthodox Jewish prayer groups in which women musically participate in the
communal prayer service in ways which had previously been reserved exclusively for men in
Orthodox worship. Women at partnership minyanim chant from the Torah a... read morend lead parts of the
ritual service, accompanied by robust harmonies from the congregation. This thesis suggests
that partnership minyanim function as an agent of "envoicing" for women who had previously
felt that their voice- both physical and metaphorical- had previously been stifled within
Orthodoxy. Additionally, the thesis presents a variety of interpretations of the Jewish
legal tradition's position on women singing, and unpacks participants' understandings of
their new role within the service. Finally, this thesis considers gender performance and
the construction of an alternative Orthodox habitus for individuals in these worship
Thesis (M.A.)--Tufts University, 2012.
Submitted to the Dept. of Music.
Advisor: Jeffrey Summit.
Committee: Richard Jankowsky, and Stephanie Levine.
Keywords: Music, and Judaic studies.read less