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Judaic Audio Lectures, Panel Discussions, Author Talks, Workshops & More

The AJL Podcast brings you the best talks on Jewish literature and the Jewish library world, with respected experts and popular authors. Please check back periodically, as new lectures will be added to the series.


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Bat Mitzvah & Beyond: Jewish Girls Coming of Age in Fiction

Judaism has a built-in mechanism for coming-of-age, but are there ways that contemporary books for middle and high school readers deal with Jewish girls’ development in addition to or beyond the Bat Mitzvah ceremony? How has the Bat Mitzvah been positively and negatively portrayed in recent books? What are the pressures that Jewish tweens, teens, and young women face and how does the current body of literature address or contribute to the conflicting messages about beauty, body image, and self-esteem that are prevalent in our society?

June Cummins is an Associate Professor in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at San Diego State University, where she specializes in children’s literature and Jewish-American Literature. She gave this presentation at the 2009 Association of Jewish Libraries convention in Chicago.

32 min 20 sec


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