Thursday, November 11, 2010

Are women allowed to learn Ramban?

A strange Cross Currents:
Face it. The Torah community does not provide many organized opportunities for women who have the skills and desire to study Torah textually. Women looking for that often face an uncomfortable choice. They either have to settle for presentations that are unchallenging and unsatisfying, or seek it out in programs whose hashkafa is way out of synch with their own. Why should a young woman who learned to love textual learning have to find it in an institution that offers women Talmud faculty members from JTS, or male teachers who speak about their misgivings about the authority of Chazal? --- RYA
Male teachers like Ibn Ezra, Maimonides, Shmuel Ben Hofni, Chai Gaon, Nachmonides, and R. Samson Rephael Hirsch?

All of these male teachers had misgivings about the authority of Chazal on matters outside of Halacha, and spoke about it openly. I know the "traditional community" doubts it and finds the suggestion appalling, but this is because they haven't studied the sources and are blithesomely unaware that the genuinely "traditional" position is not the one that they profess.

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