Last night Dax and I went to a Feminist Seder in Manayunk. We didn't know what to expect, but being the enlightened over-educated urban chicksters we are, we were ready for anything. O got her hands on a Feminist Haggadah and so we celebrated our Jewessness over latkes, goat cheese salad and chicken and carrots, not to mention a huge jug of grape-flavored Manischevitz.
This Haggadah was the most entertaining haggadah I've ever laid eyes on. It's very 'current', as it mentions Hitler, nuclear annihiliation, saving the environment, the Suffragist Movement, and lady paratroopers to boot.
Here are some highlights.
Frogs: The myth of the 'Frog Prince' has enslaved women to an unattainable idea of romance...We remove a drop of wine for all women trapped in false hopes and expectations for their lives.
Boils: Women are pressured to look like an artificial and unattainable image of beauty. Some women have felt compelled to surgically alter their bodies...We remove a drop of wine for all women made to feel that they don't measure up.
Locusts: As locusts strip a field, so patriarchy has kept us from the full fruits of our labors...We remove a drop of wine for the pain of all women who have been denied the opportunity to pursue their own passions.
Blood: Our life-giving monthly bood has become a taboo....We remove a drop of wine for the spilled blood of women.
(Ya knew that was coming, right?)
[Insert WORKERS UNITE! cartoon here]
[Insert passage from 'a womyn's seder' about how Lilith got totally screwed in the Bible.]
Just as the maror and charoset combine to form something new and wonderful, so may each of use merge all of her disparate selves into a greater whole. This seder is not about anger. We are proud and happy to be Jewish women.
NB: 'This seder is not about anger' was crossed out. Of course we're angry! We're womyn!
And I don't remember why, but for some reason the phrase 'This is the ghettoest seder ever' was stated at least 3 times over the course of the evening.
We had a great time, laughed our asses off, told way too many jokes about firm balls vs. fluffy balls, as any good feminist seder party should and ended the meal by taking hits from a can of whipped cream. From our lips to god's ears? Isn't that the phrase?
Editorial comment: I'm not mocking the Feminist Seder. It beats the hell out of the coma-inducing Maxwell House version that appears to be a translation of a translation to the 30th degree. This was a very educational and highly engaging ritual celebration. I take my womynhood very very very seriously. And my Jewishwomynhood - don't even get me started. I am afterall, a student loan carrying member of The Seven Sisters Sisterhood. No flaming please!