Miria Kano

Publication Date

Summer 12-1-2013


Between 2001 and 2012, I collaborated with Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb, Rabbi Malka Drucker, Rabbi Shefa Gold, Rabbi Min Kantrowitz, and Rabbi Deborah Brin to investigate the challenges and opportunities afforded by womens recent attainment of rabbinic ordination. As members of the first and second generations of women rabbis, they offer unique perspectives on the recent histories of both American and Jewish cultures. This dissertation is a narrative exploration of how these rabbis came of age, cultivated self-understanding, chose careers as spiritual leaders, crafted public identities, and formed communities in 20th/21st Century American Jewish societies. This research focuses on the role of autobiographical story construction and performance in the transformation of rabbinic leadership, and examines the ways in which these stories provide new models for people seeking contemporary or alternative Jewish practice and connection. I question too the ways in which these stories foster Jewish identity and community in two New Mexico congregations, Congregation Nahalat Shalom and HaMakom, the Place for Passionate and Progressive Judaism, as well as in the expanding margins of less traditional, electronically mediated Jewish communities, Jewish Family Services, Shomer Shalom, and Kol Zimra.'


Jewish, Rabbi, Women, Life Story, New Mexico

Project Sponsors

The Hadassah-Brandeis Institute, the Karl H. Schwerin Graduate Fellowship in Ethnology, the New Mexico Folk Lore Scholars Endowment, the Hibben Senior Fellowship and the University of New Mexico Graduate and Professional Student Association.

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First Committee Member (Chair)

Field, Les

Second Committee Member

Lamphere, Louise

Third Committee Member

Salvador, Mari Lyn

Included in

Anthropology Commons