Whose Torah? A Concise Guide to Progressive Judaism

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Whose Torah? A Concise Guide to Progressive Judaism, by Rebecca T, Alpert. New York, NY: The New Press, 2008. 164 pp. $23.95.

Rebecca Alpert is among the fitst women to be ordained as a rabbi and is a leader and advocate fot progressive social issues. In this slim volume Alpett endeavors to show the progressive values inherent in Jewish tradition and how progressive Judaism encompasses social justice in its approach to the most important social and political issues of our time: sexuality, gender, tace, war and peace, poverty, and the environment.

Whose Torah? is part of the "Whose Religion" series published by the New Press, in which leading thinkers from Judaism, Catholicism, Protestantism, and Islam demonstrate how theit traditions call for progressive positions on contemporary social issues. Alpert concisely delineates the textual basis fot progressive social justice positions on many issues and introduces the movements, leaders, and organizations that are the cote of the progressive Jewish ethos. She looks at contemporary societal issues through the lens of Torah and demonstrates the Jewish undetpinnings of contemporary progressive politics.

In the chaptet s on sexuality and gendet, Alpert explores Jewish views on intimacy, marriage, divorce, birth control, abortion, and homosexuality. She demonstrates the ways that Judaism, in genet al, advocates a positive view of sex and shares her own views on marriage equality and same sex marriages. …