(JTA) — The latest casualty in Israel’s “modesty wars” is a Smurfette, a blue cartoon creature who stars in the latest “Smurfs” movie.
While a Smurfette — differentiated only by her long blonde hair and six cartoon eyelashes — graced billboards across Israel for “Smurfs: The Lost Village,” along with her three presumably male Smurfs, she was nowhere to be found on the posters in Bnei Brak.
The film’s distribution company decided to erase the blue-bodied beauty from posters in order not to offend residents, according to the Israeli daily Haaretz, which shared a photo of the poster with only the three male Smurfs. The company, Forum Film, also told Haaretz that it is common practice not to feature women on posters in Bnei Brak.
We’re not sure whether to laugh or cry #SmurfsMoviehttps://t.co/DRRGPfm1Ei— Haaretz.com (@haaretzcom) March 27, 2017
Not all Orthodox communities in Israel are on board with the strict gender-separation represented by the haredi community. Modern Orthodox Jews are among those active in pluralistic groups like the Yerushalmit Movement, Women Changing Jerusalem and Yerushalmim, which have put up their own advertisements featuring pictures of women.
Josefin Dolsten is a former news fellow at the Forward, writing about politics and culture, and editing the Sisterhood blog. She received an MA in Jewish Studies and Comparative Religion from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a BA in Government from Cornell University. Follow her on Twitter at @josefindolsten.
Female Smurf Scrubbed From Movie Posters In Ultra-Orthodox Israeli Town