Association for Jewish studies 1997- 22(1) by Nelson, M

By Nelson, M

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Whenher husbandreturned,he was perturbedby this development andcontendedthatthe wife's occupationwas outsidethe boundsof modesty expectedof a marriedwoman, for she inevitablyhad to have contactwith the fathersof herpupils;this was entirelyunacceptableto him. Onenaturally wonders whether teaching was a common professionfor women in this society. Thereis little evidence available,aside from a referenceto female teachersin eleventh-centuryCairo as well as a synagogueknown as the "Synagogueof the WomenTeachers,"wherereadingandwritingweretaught 22.

Dan, "GershomScholem and Jewish Messianism,"in Gershom Scholem:TheMan and His Work,ed. P. , 1994),pp. 73-86, esp. 82-86. 2. See I. , HebrewUniversity,1991). 3 Whileall of theseare important and contributeto the overall understandingof what is the most influential kabbalisticdoctrinesince the Zohar,4I would like to approachthe Lurianic materialfroma differentperspective. While R. Hayyim Vital's Etz Hayyim5has justifiablybeen considered the foundationalpresentationof the Lurianicsystem, its popularityhas overshadowedvariousotherLurianictextswhichofferuniqueandinnovative approachesto kabbalistictheosophy,particularlyin the area of scriptural interpretation.

1, p. 50, n. 4. Goiteinconfirmedthis whenhe wrotethatThursday was the day on which fees were normallypaid; see MediterraneanSociety,vol. 3, p. 188. ](Jerusalem,1984),p. 31. 26 RENEELEVINEMELAMMED Despite the fact thathe is at his mother'sday andnight,and if he buys somethingfor a pittance,it is for him andhis mother,andhis wife knowsnothingof it; laterhe complainsto everyonein the city thatshe [the wife] is not fulfillinghis needs andis not sleepingat home. I will not preventyou fromsleepingat home.

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