Cincinnati [Ohio] : Hebrew Union College Press ; Detroit, MI : Distributed by Wayne State University Press, c2007.
Book — xx, 337 p. ; 24 cm.
Based on passages in "Leviticus", rabbinic law dictates that Jewish women who experience uterine bleeding are prohibited from having physical contact of any kind with their husbands. The intricate laws of niddah (enforced separation) spell out exactly when and under what circumstances physical relations, even simple touching, can be resumed. Aside from the guidance of other women, how could sixteenth-century women learn all the rules and regulations of such an intimate subject?To educate women in a more efficient manner, Rabbi Benjamin Slonik (ca. 1550-after 1620) harnessed the relatively new technology of printing to publish a "how to" book for women in the Yiddish vernacular. Informing and correcting the religious lives of women, particularly in the most personal of realms, was of great importance, for dire consequences were said to await those who were lax in their observance. Slonik's book, "Seder mitzvot ha-nashim" ("The Order of Women's Commandments") not only illuminates the history of Yiddish printing and public education, but is rare remnant of a direct interface between a member of the rabbinic elite and the laity, especially women. Slonik's text also sheds light on the history of Jewish law, particularly the reception offered to the Shulhan arukh, an important legal code that had just been published.In "My Dear Daughter", Edward Fram investigates these issues while locating Slonik's efforts in their bibliographic and historical contexts. The study is accompanied by a transcription of the 1585 edition of the "Seder mizvot ha-nashim" and facing-page English language translation of the Yiddish text. (source: Nielsen Book Data) 9780878204595 20160528