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Hannah Safran Don't Wanna Be Nice Girls: The Struggle for Suffrage and the New Feminism in Israel Haifa: Pardes Publications, 2006.
We live in a time of powerful forces that operate to isolate us--to disconnect us from each other, from women who struggled against injustice and oppression in the past and those who are still engaged in the very same struggles. Powerful disputations disconnect us from feminist women who are resisting power structures around us, and from women who took part in feminist endeavors over the years. Our separate struggles for success in careers, intimate relationships and inner growth, and for our own economic survival, often expose us to individualist ideologies and practices that help us forget the enormous amount of human effort invested in our current understanding of women's lives.
Hannah Safran's book, Don't Wanna Be Nice Girls: The Struggle for Suffrage and the New Feminism in Israel, is an attempt to challenge these forces and connect us to significant feminist projects that took place in Israel-projects that we didn't know of, or knew of but have forgotten. This sense of connection to Israeli feminists in the 1920s and 1970s generates an exciting journey of encounter with their courage and persistence, but at the same time a terribly sad one. Safran's account of the complex feminist struggle to enhance the legitimacy of the movement and its cause in the wider society is both optimistic and pessimistic: Wonderful women devoted the best of their resources to …