An analytical biography of Professor Nehama Leibowitz, a key Jewish figure of the twentieth century. Urim Publications, Jerusalem, 2009. 608 pages.

This biography documents her life story, inspiring personality and scholarship. It discusses her strong views on such issues as Zionism, humanism and feminism, as well as the influences that shaped her. Other topics covered include her pioneering approach to Bible and commentaries that changed the face of Jewish Bible study, her acceptance as a prominent Torah scholar despite her gender, and the future of her work in light of recent scholarship.

Nehama Leibowitz’s story is not only that of an accomplished woman or even of a great Jewish personality, but also touches upon some of the major developments and concerns of twentieth-century Jewish life.

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“Unterman’s biography has placed Nehama alive among us once again in a love’s labor that has not been lost.” 

- Dr. Rachel Adelman, Jerusalem Post


“This book is brave... not only worth reading – it is a great starter for many discussions about topics important to us and more critically, important to Nehama.”

- Rabbi Francis Nataf, BookJed


“Unterman has done an immense amount of research... Her book will be a valuable resource to future scholars who want to study this woman.”

- Rabbi Jack Riemer, South Florida Sun-Sentinel


“Unterman’s familiarity with her material, extensive interviews and clear writing come through in her book... a worthy read for English speakers looking for a critical and in-depth analysis of Leibowitz’s beliefs and writings, as well as insight into the way her students viewed their revered teacher.”

- Shoshana Kordova, Haaretz


“The biography is a fascinating depiction of an old-style religious Zionist... Overall, an essential read for Nehama aficionados, but worthwhile... for everyone.”

- Vicki Belovski, Jewish Chronicle


“Fascinating, exhaustive and thought-provoking... I particularly liked... the many stories and interviews – because it really brought Nehama to life.”

- Rabbi Gil Student, Hirhurim blog


“Highly readable. It is recommended for the so-called general reader, and is a must for educators, feminists, and Zionists.”

- Chaim Seymour, Bar-Ilan University


“Clear, well-written and well-documented... I would recommend it as a guide to all interested in the history of biblical interpretation, feminist scholarship, Jewish education, and contemporary Israeli Bible scholarship outside that of the ‘usual’ scholarly, academic world. Indeed, Unterman's Nehama Leibowitz: Teacher and Bible Scholar is an enduring resource for scholars engaged in recovery of female Bible interpreters in the past and present.”

- Igal German, University of Toronto


“Unterman succeeds in capturing Nehama’s memorable personality, and in reconstructing her classroom and the lively discussions that took place there... The final Section in Unterman’s volume, “Looking to the Future,” is one of her finest... Comparisons between Nehama’s methods and those of contemporary teachers such as R. Yoel Bin Nun and Dr. Avivah Zornberg are enlightening, as is Unterman’s discussion of the negative influence of the matriculation examinations on the approach of the religious state system. Her conclusions may be unsettling, but she is to be commended for squaring with the truth and articulating the challenges facing the field of Torah education today.”

- Marla L. Frankel, Nashim: A Journal of Jewish Women's Studies and Gender Issues