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Transcript
THE GOVERNANCE OF RELIGIOUS DIVERSITY
MORE OR LESS SECULARISM?
10-12 June 2015
SESSION:
ROUNDTABLE: GOVERNING RELIGIOUS DIVERSITY AND GENDER RELATIONS
THE MONOPOLY OF JEWISH ORTHODOXY IN ISRAEL AND ITS EFFECTS ON THE STATUS OF
WOMEN
Raphael Cohen-Almagor | University of Hull
Democracy is supposed to allow each and every individual the opportunity to follow her
conception of the good without coercion. Generally speaking, Israel gives precedence to
Judaism over liberalism. This article argues that the reverse should be the case. In Section
I it is explained what are the Halachic grounds for discrimination against women. Section
II considers Israeli legislation that is pertinent to promote equality between men and
women, aimed to counter the discriminatory Jewish Law. Section III analyses
inegalitarian manifestations of Orthodox Judaism in Israeli society today, especially
discriminatory practices in matters of personal status. It is argued that Judaism needs to
adapt gender equality because of Israel’s commitment to human equality.