Digest: The Politics of the Ultrasound, SATC2 Musings

The Sisterhood Digest:

• Israel has become a major battleground in the Democratic primary fight between incumbent Jane Harman and challenger Marcy Winograd. Both women vying to represent California’s 36th congressional district are Jewish, but Winograd is much more critical of Israeli policy than is her opponent, and she has accused Harman of being beholden to AIPAC; Harman is taking her offensive to the airwaves.

• The New York Times reports on the new Oklahoma law, which, much like one enacted in Alabama in 2002, requires a woman seeking an abortion to “be presented with an ultrasound image and with a detailed oral description of the embryo or fetus.” Anti-abortion advocates hope this will encourage women to carry to term; those in favor of abortion rights say the directives are just cruel.

• Ynet columnist Rivkah Lubitch advocates the establishment of alternative rabbinic courts in Israel. Her call to action comes in the wake of the Chief Rabbinate’s new rules requiring the marriage registrar to send converts and those whose parents were married outside of Israel to go to religious court, in order to determine their status as a Jew or a non-Jew.

• Lilith wants you to weigh in on the high demand for Jewish donor eggs.

• Meet Valerie Hoffenberg, the Jewish woman sent by French President Nicolas Sarkozy to strengthen the Palestinian economy.

• Interfaith Family looks at the Jewish identity of the feminist essayist and poet Adrienne Rich — a subject explored previously on the pages of the Forward.

• Over at Jewesses With Attitude, Leah Berkenwald calls “Agora,” the new film starring Rachel Weisz, “the answer to the sins” — the main characters’ extreme consumerism, their apathy to the plight of less fortunate women, etc. — of [“Sex and the City 2.”]

• In other SATC2-related musings, former Bintel Brief guest columnist Hanna Rosin wonders why the sexually voracious Samantha character didn’t sleep with an Arab man during the “girls’” onscreen trip to Abu Dhabi.

• Like Madonna, Lady Gaga and Rihanna before her, Missy Elliot is the latest female musical artist to schedule a concert in Israel. The R&B star will be at the Tel Aviv Fairgrounds on July 15.

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