Thursday, October 27, 2005

What's wrong with the women?

Gil Student on women and Simchas Torah:
Simply put, it stinks to be a female on Simhas Torah. I mean, look at them! They just sit or stand and stare at the men dancing... I see them in shul staring at us and if they're not bored, I'm bored for them.Why can't they just dance in the women's section? It's not like they need Torah scrolls to dance.
Maybe the sociologists in the audience can explain this phenomenon to us. They're permitted to dance, to join in the festivities of Simchas Torah, so why don't they?

Is it a form of false consciousness? Have they convinced themselves that it's good and proper and right and True to Judaism for them to be left out of the party? Or is it simply their choice - a choice to be lazy - to sit and socialize while their men sing and dance.

[Anecdote: When my wife and I were first engaged we went to the Yeshiva for Simchas Torah. As I did the circle dances, she sat in the woman's section watching me. Each time I passed her, I smiled or raised my eyebrows in greeting. After 15 or 20 minutes of this, the woman sitting in front of my wife said to her companion:(in a voice my wife later called "a mixture of pride and indiganation") "Why does that guy keep smiling at me?"]