Jewish Weddings: Identity, Desire, and Anxiety by Amy Levin

As a Jewish feminist, I’m often critical of marriage. And, as a 26-year old (this month) who attended Jewish camp, leadership/environmental programs in Israel, and was active in Jewish youth groups growing up, I’ve been frequenting my fair share of Jewish weddings lately. These occasions bring me joy, nostalgia, and an overall reminder in the beautiful power of ritual and ceremony. But they also bring me a piercing sense of anxiety – one that I’m sure I am not alone in experiencing. I see marriage as a heteronormative and ideologically oppressive institution that promotes a hierarchy of relationships – being married as the most desirable form of a relationship, and remaining single as a failure of the female, much like not having children is seen as a failure of womanhood. I see the seventy billion dollar (or more) American wedding industry as representative of the capitalist impulse involved in the planning of weddings, bachelorette parties, and honeymoons, not to mention the violence involved in the so-called “blood diamonds” of so many engagement rings. Continue reading “Jewish Weddings: Identity, Desire, and Anxiety by Amy Levin”

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