Abraham’s daughters – a bat mitzvah story


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“This documentary should be seen by every family planning a Bar Mitzvah or Bat Mitzvah. My colleagues and I have used this film to great effect as an orientation for 6th graders and their families early in their B’nai Mitzvah preparation. It never fails to provoke enthusiastic discussion about the meaning of this important event in their lives. Lauren Shweder has given us a terrific teaching opportunity. With it’s magical mixture of realism, humor and spirituality, Abraham’s Daughters celebrates Jewish life in America at it’s best. “

Jerome Davidson,

Temple Beth-El, Great Neck, NY

“A psychologically perceptive and emotionally sensitive portrait of a bat mitzvah that explores the event’s meaning not just for the child, but for the parents and grandparents as well. This look behind the scenes and below the surface illuminates the multiple layers of meaning inherent in this family rite of passage. I recommend this documentary to other educators.”

– Judith Davis, Ed.D., family therapist and author, “Whose Bar/Bat Mitzvah Is This, Anyway? A Guide for Parents Through a Family Rite of Passage” (St. Martin’s Press).

Abraham’s Daughters is a wonderful film about a rite of passage not only for an adolescent
girl, but its meaning for her New York parents and grandparents
who are Holocaust survivors. The powerful reflections of all of
those engaged in the rite are beautifully captured by the film,
and the meaning of the ritual unfolds as the filmmaker takes us
into their lives and their plans for the event. The film stayed
with me for many days as I turned over in my own mind its angles
on ritual, Jewish identity, and coming of age.”

Professor of American Studies,
University of Minnesota







Torah pointer


Partial List of Institutions that Use Abraham’s Daughters:

Temple Beth-El, Great Neck, NY
Temple Isaiah, Lexington, MA
Temple Emanuel, Andover, MA
Temple B’nai Or, Morristown, NJ
Congregation Kol Ami, White Plains, NY
Temple Shaaray Tefila, New York, NY
Westchester Reform Temple, Scarsdale, NY
Temple Sholom of Chicago, Chicago, IL
Temple Beth Elohim, Old Bethpage, NY
Community Synagogue of Rye, Rye, NY
Temple Israel, New York, NY
Temple Beth Torah, Wellington, FL
Congregation Beth Israel-Judea, San Francisco, CA
Temple Beth El, Eureka, CA
Agency for Jewish Education of San Diego County,
San Diego, CA
Congregation Bet Breira, Miami, FL
The Jewish Education Center of Cleveland, OH
The Park School, Baltimore, MD
Temple Emanu-el, Haverhill, MA
Baltimore Hebrew Congregation, Baltimore, MD
Union Temple of Brooklyn, Brooklyn, NY
Temple Beth Israel, Skokie, IL
Temple Beth David of Commack, Commack, NY
Tiferet Bet Israel, Blue Bell, PA
Temple Israel, Boston, MA
Temple Beth Shalom, Needham, MA
Indiana University Jewish Studies Department,
United Hebrew Congregation, St. Louis, MO










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