Professor Wins Award for ‘Mitzvah Girls’

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In her most recent book, Ayala Fader, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Sociology and Anthropology, delved deep into the close knit Hasidic Jewish community of Boro Park, Brooklyn.

For her efforts, the Jewish Book Council recently awarded Mitzvah Girls: Bringing Up the Next Generation of Hasidic Jews in Brooklyn (Princeton University Press), with the 2009 Barbara Dobkin Award in Women’s Studies.

In the book, which is one of 18 winners in the council’s annual book awards, Fader examined language, gender, and the body from infancy to adulthood to showing how Hasidic girls in Brooklyn become women responsible for rearing the next generation of non liberal Jewish believers. To uncover how girls learn the practices of Hasidic Judaism, she looked beyond the synagogue to everyday talk in the context of homes, classrooms, and city streets.

Fader will be honored along with her fellow winners on at a gala award ceremony on March 9 at the Center for Jewish History in Manhattan at 15 West 16th St. The awards ceremony, which begins at 7:30 p.m., is free and open to the public.

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