• Raucher, Michal
  • Michal Raucher
  • Undergraduate Director and Associate Professor of Jewish Studies
  • Schools: PhD in Religious Studies, Northwestern University (with a graduate certificate in Gender and Sexuality Studies), MA in Bioethics: University of Pennsylvania, BA in Hebrew Bible: Jewish Theological Seminary, BA in Religion: Columbia University
  • Office Address: 14 College Avenue, Miller Hall 104
  • Phone Number: 848-932-1717

Recent Event

Religion After Roe: Abortion in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam
Monday, September 19
Donahue Auditorium, Dolan Science Center, John Carroll University

Recording of Event

Research Interests

  • Anthropology of Judaism
  • Jewish women in Israel and America
  • Agency and Authority among religious women
  • Religion and Bioethics
  • Anthropology of Reproduction
  • Reproductive Justice

Research in Progress

“Tapping on the Stained Glass Ceiling: The Ordination of Orthodox Jewish Women in America and Israel.” Interviews and observations started in June 2016.

“Jewish Reproductive Justice: Pronatalism and Pro-Choice Judaism.” In partnership with the CrossCurrents Summer Research Colloquium at Auburn Theological Seminary

Regularly taught courses

  • Arab-Israeli Conflict
  • Israeli Culture
  • Jews and Medicine
  • Jerusalem Contested



Conceiving Agency: Reproductive Authority among Haredi Women, Indiana University Press, (2020).

Journal Articles

“Whose Womb and Whose Ethics? Surrogacy in Jewish Ethics,” Journal of Jewish Ethics, 3.1 (2017). 68-91.

“Ethnography and Jewish Ethics: Lessons from a Case Study in Reproductive Ethics,” Journal of Religious Ethics, 44.4 (2016). 636-658.

“The Cultural and Legal Reproduction of Poverty: Abortion Legislation in Israel.” Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion, 30:1 (2014). 147-156.

“What they Mean by ‘Good Science’: The Medical Community’s Response to Boutique Fetal Ultrasounds.” Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 34:5 (2009). 528-544.

Ramarajan, Arulmozhi, Renzong Qiu, Michal Raucher, Ruth Chadwick, Amna Nossier, Shahida Zaidi. “Sexual Rights and Gender Roles in a Religious Context. Reproductive and Sexual Health Rights: 15 Years after the International Conference on Population and Development.” FIGO World Report on Women's Health. International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics, 106:2 (2009). 151-155

Book Chapters

“Be Fruitful and Multiply…Except…Contraception in Judaism: Balancing Competing Values.” Religious Perspectives on Reproductive Ethics, edited by Dena Davis. New York: Oxford University Press. 2019

“Anonymous Intimacy: Orthodox Jewish Women as Legal Advisors on the Internet.” In Digital Judaism, edited by Heidi Campbell, 74-90. New York: Routledge, 2015.

Commentary and Roundtable Contributions

“Immersing in Climate Change.” Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion. 33.2 (2017). 162-167.

Henning, Alyssa, Michal Raucher, and Laurie Zoloth. “A Jewish Response to the Vatican?” American Journal of Bioethics 9:11 (2009). 37-39.

Zoloth, Laurie, Leilah Backus, Teresa Woodruff, Alyssa Henning and Michal Raucher. “Like/As Metaphor and Meaning in Bioethics Narrative,” American Journal of Bioethics 8:6 (2008). W3-W5

Book Reviews

Review of Michal Kravel-Tovi, When the State Winks: The Performance of Jewish Conversion in Israel. Religious Studies Review (Forthcoming)

Review of Jonathan Saks, The Dignity of Difference: How to Avoid the Class of Civilizations. The New Jewish Canon, edited by Claire Sufrin and Yehuda Kurtzer (Forthcoming 2020).

Review of Rebecca Todd Peters, Trust Women: A Progressive Christian argument for Reproductive Justice. The Syndicate Network. May 8, 2019

Review of Pregnancy in Practice: Expectation and Experience in the Contemporary US. Association for Feminist Anthropology. 2015.

Ethnographic Encounters in Israel: Poetics and Ethics of Fieldwork. H-Judaic. 2015.

Blog Posts (Peer reviewed)

“Even the Allies are Misogynist” Feminist Studies in Religion Blog, May 28, 2019.

“Feminist Ethnography Inside and Outside the Field” Feminist Studies in Religion Blog, May 8, 2018.

“Sexual Assault, Feminism, and the Jews” Feminist Studies in Religion Blog, October 19, 2017.

“‘Facts on the Ground’: An Ironic Approach to Orthodox Female Rabbis?” Feminist Studies in Religion Blog, November 11, 2015.


“Jewish Law’s Positive View on Contraception,” The New York Jewish Week, February 6, 2018.

Blog Posts (not peer reviewed)

“Let’s Talk about Sex” JTS Torah Commentary, June 7, 2017.

“Facing Our Past and Looking toward the Future” JTS Torah Commentary, May 27, 2016.

“Rachel Leans In,” JTS Torah Commentary, November 5, 2015.

“Dissent is Not a Dirty Word,” JTS Torah Commentary, June 19, 2015.

“The Clothes Make the (Wo)Man,” JTS Torah Commentary, June 13, 2014.

Public Talks

I teach and lecture on a wide range of topics, including reproduction in Israel, Jewish ethics, Jewish women, and Jewish feminism. For a sample of my teaching style, see this lecture:

“Whose Womb and Whose Ethics? Surrogacy in Jewish Ethics.” Temple Beth Sholom, Cherry Hill, NJ. April 29.

“Is there a Jewish Continuity Crisis?” The Jewish Theological Seminary, June 8, 2020.

Awarded Grants

2019: CrossCurrents Summer Research Collquium, Auburn Theological Seminary, “Pronatalism and Reproductive Justice in Judaism.”

2016-2017: American Academy of Religion, Individual Research Grant, “Tapping on the Stained Glass Ceiling,” $5,000

2016-2017: Hadassah-Brandeis Institute, Research Grant, “Tapping on the Stained Glass Ceiling,” $4,000

2015-2016: Israel Institute, Research Grant, “Orthodox Female Clergy in Israel and America,” $8,195

2010-2011: Wenner Gren Foundation, Dissertation Fieldwork Grant, “Haredi Reproductive Ethics,” $12,995

2010-2011: Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture, Doctoral Scholarship, “Haredi Reproductive Ethics,” $4,000

2009-2010: Fulbright Fellowship, Institute of International Education, “Haredi Reproductive Ethics.”

Professional Affiliations

American Academy of Religion

Feminist Studies in Religion, board member, co-chair of E-Feminist Studies in Religion

Editorial board member, Journal of Jewish Ethics

Vice President, Society of Jewish Ethics

Association for Jewish Studies

Association for Israel Studies