By Melissa Raphael
The feminine Face of God in Auschwitz, the 1st full-length feminist theology of the Holocaust, argues that the masculinist bias of post-Holocaust theology turns into totally obvious merely while thought of within the mild of either women's perceptions of God and in their holocaustal experiencesand priorities. development upon released stories of 4 girls imprisoned at Auschwitz-Birkenau-Olga Lengyel, Lucie Adelsberger, Bertha Ferderber-Salz, and Sara Nomberg-Przytyk-it considers women's special reports of the holy relating to God's perceived presence and lack within the camps. attractive with Berkovits, Fackenheim, Levinas and different post-Holocaust Jewish thinkers, the feminine Face of God in Auschwitz is a thorough and refined meditation upon God's position and that means. wondering the real nature of the Jewish God found in Auschwitz, and arguing for God's participation in its extremities of agony and style, it powerfully resists defamatory interpretations of the Holocaust as proof of divine vengeance, indifference or overlook.
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Extra info for The Female Face of God in Auschwitz: A Jewish Feminist Theology of the Holocaust (Religion Andgender)
56 Emil Fackenheim’s thought typiﬁes this deﬁant posture. In his early work, God’s Presence in History,57 Fackenheim drew a parallel between the decisive transformatory ‘root experiences’ of God’s self-revelation in the Exodus and at Sinai, and ‘epochmaking events’ such as that of Auschwitz which challenged the very substance of the ‘root experiences’. In Auschwitz the ‘epoch-making event’ was God’s self- 30 Post-Holocaust theology: a feminist perspective revelation in the giving of a 614th commandment: the commandment that Jews must survive and die as Jews.
Despite Judith Plaskow having consistently argued that Jewish women’s status as ‘Other’ to the male norm is grounded in a masculinist theology of which halakhic inequalities are but a symptom, most Jewish feminists regard women’s role and status as ﬁrst and foremost a matter for halakhic and thereby social reform. 11 Although it by no means suggests indifference, even in the two full-length, single-author volumes of Jewish theology that go by that name (Judith Plaskow’s Standing Again at Sinai and Rachel Adler’s Engendering Judaism) the Holocaust is not discussed and barely even alluded to.
If anyone heard the [divine] voice, it was they, and if anyone’s response ought to guide and direct our own, it is theirs. Indeed, it is only because of them that we can respond at all, and only through them that we can begin to see how to interpret the meaning of the divine presence for ourselves. Morgan continues: ‘Only through the actions and words of people [the context indicates men] like R. ’39 Rabbi Oshry’s judgements are profound and humane. Again, for a feminist, the problem is not with the judgements as such but with the exclusionary absence of female subjecthood from the secondary and primary texts (Morgan’s and Oshry’s respectively).