If you’ve ever pushed a stroller up a curb cut or used a ramp to avoid stairs or needed an extra wide door to navigate with a wheelchair, you probably have Judith Heumann to thank. Judith Heumann , who passed away just a few weeks ago, was one of the people instrumental in getting Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 signed into law. This act gave accommodations to people with disabilities and changed thousands of lives for the better- not only those with disabilities.
It is Women’s History Month, a good time to recall Judith Heumann’s accomplishments along with other outstanding Jewish women who made the world a better place or proved that women were brave and strong and bold like the Maccabees.
Here are just a few of the books in our library celebrating women and their accomplishments.
When a name is unfamiliar, I often find it best to start with a children’s book to get the highlights of the person’s life. Children’s biographies are entertaining and enlightening, short, well written and illustrated. They usually set a person in the social and historic content.
Here is a selected list of books featuring women:
64.5 Alfond. Feeding the Women of the Talmud, Feeding Ourselves retells the stories of 69 women of the Talmud and links them to vegan and plant based recipes. A uniquely beautiful book.
741.5 Finck. Let There be Light: the real story of her creation thoughtfully reimagines the Book of Genesis with a female God and in the format of a graphic novel. The author is a well-known New Yorker cartoonist
940.41 Macadam. 999: the extraordinary young women of the first official transport to Auschwitz who left their hometowns thinking that they were bound for work in a factory. Instead, they ended up in Auschwitz and their dreams became nightmares. The book celebrates they bravery and spirit as well as the tragedy of these mostly teenagers.
JBIO Cocca-Lefler. Fighting for Yes: the story of disability rights activist Judith Heumann tells Heumann’s story with humor and humanity as she and her family fought to have her enrolled in public school to her service in the Federal government and beyond.
JBIO Churnin. A Queen to the Rescue: the story of Henrietta Szold, founder of Hadassah, is s brief but full look at Szold’s life and the impact the organization that she had on American women and Israeli life.
JBIO Kantrovitz. Sylvie lives in a school in France. This graphic novel tells the story of her upbringing and maturation as she becomes aware of the world around her and how her life is different from her contemporaries.
BIO Lehrer. Golem Girl: a memoir tells the true story of Riva Lehrer, one of the first children to survive with spina bifida, and her struggle to be accepted as a person and an artist. It features reproductions of the artist’s paintings.
JBIO Lindauer. Hannah G. Solomon Dared to Make a Difference by founding the National Council of Jewish Women, the first national American organization for Jewish women.