Articles About Bat Mitzvah by Barbara Vinick and Shula Reinharz

"Today I Am a Woman" by Barbara Vinick and Shulamit Reinharz
The Prosen People Blog, Jewish Book Council

In the few months since our book was published, women of different ages have come up to us with stories of their own experiences of bat mitzvah... These stories have brought home to us in a personal way the trajectory of Jewish women's experience in the last half-century in the United States...Read more

"The Sisterhood of Bat Mitzvah" by Barbara Vinick
The Prosen People Blog, Jewish Book Council

I didn’t have a bat mitzvah...When I reached 13 in the 1950s, girls who attended three-day-a-week Hebrew School at our suburban Conservative synagogue north of Boston did not have that option. In those post-World War II years before the second wave of feminism, a public coming of age ceremony at Temple Beth El was strictly the realm of the boys. I didn’t really mind being excluded. After all, who wanted to go to special practice sessions with the cantor all year?.. Read more

"Destination Bat Mitzvahs" by Shulamit Reinharz
The Prosen People Blog, Jewish Book Council

The other day I had a discussion with a group of girls about their ideal bat mitzvah...Several of the girls said that that their ideal was to celebrate away from home. A few wanted to go to Israel, specifically the Western Wall or Masada. Other ideas were more surprising: “Germany, because it has great technology,” “Japan, because I love anime,” and “France, so I can see a real fashion runway”...Read more

"Bat Mitzvahs Around the World"
An interview in 614: HBI eZine

Meet Barbara Vinick, who has been collecting stories from Mumbai, Libya, Croatia, and other surprising areas of the world. Read the interview

"My Jewish Armchair Trip" by Barbara Vinick
614: HBI eZine

For the past several years, I have collected stories from around the world about bat mitzvah, the ceremony that marks the coming-of-age of Jewish girls. When I tell people about this collection, the question I hear most often is "So, did you go to those places?" No, in the digital age, I didn't have to. I was a virtual traveler on a tour that took me around the globe to Jewish communities in 78 countries. From my home computer, I journeyed to places near and far, from Jewish congregations in neighboring towns to remote locations where I never knew Jews had made their homes...Read more

"We Might All Be Able To Learn From These Bat Mitzvah Girls" by Shulamit Reinharz
The Jewish Advocate

Chatting with a young person who had just finished a year-long internship at a national Jewish organization, I asked her what she had learned. She answered immediately, “I learned to hate our competitor organization.” This response is altogether too common in a community with many organizations that often are trying to outdo each other in fundraising, attracting new members, drawing an audience and disseminating their divergent philosophies...Read more

"The history of the book" by Barbara Vinick

When I was first given the idea to collect worldwide stories about bat mitzvah, I wasn’t optimistic. After all, wasn't bat mitzvah "invented" in the United States? Had they heard of celebrating a girl's coming-of-age in other places in the world? And wasn't it limited to Reform and Conservative congregations?... As it turned out, I was wrong on all counts...Read more