First things first. My second weigh in was last night, and I lost another 3 1/2 pounds, bringing my two week total up to 11 1/2. :)
Now, on to the book.
I've been working through this book since the middle of December, and I just don't know what to say about it. I have two books by this author, this one and How to Run a Traditional Jewish Household. I'm not sure which one I got first, but I haven't read the other one yet.
This book is a collection of previously written essays on the need/attempt to mesh the feminist ideals with living an Orthodox Jewish life. For the most part, it's just an interesting book. I do get the impression, though, that the author sort of wants to have her cake and eat it too. She wants women to be able to do all the things that men can do, while still being traditional women. I'm not saying it's a bad thing, or impossible, but it just strikes me as wanting all the best of both worlds, without admitting that you're going to inherit some of the problems as well. Some of the things, like women needing to be able to request a divorce, in accordance with the halakhic law, make perfect sense. Others, the rights of women to study Torah, to be called up to read it, etc. are perhaps a matter of taste. She does make the point that the law, in relation to women, has always been a living thing, growing and reflecting the larger society around the Jewish people.
The one chapter that I just didn't agree with anything was the chapter on the 'right' of women to abortion.
*sigh* Like I said, I'm really not sure what to say about the book. I enjoyed reading it, but *raises hands* Meh.
So, my next book is God is Not Great by Christopher Hitchens. I've started the first chapter, and I can say, I remember getting this book when it first came out, so excited about it (I was in a semi-atheist phase) and loving it so much. Now, when he's going on and on about how much more wonderful nature is than the cathedrals, etc. All I can think is, well, no duh. Nature was created by God, and is therefore always going to be far more magnificent than anything humans can create. And when he's nattering on about the random perfection of the human genome, I sort of laughed. Since when did chaos breed order and perfection?