The prevalent מנהג is that women do not get drunk on Purim. I assume this due to tznius (modesty) concerns. Is there any ancient or recent source that explicitly discusses women not/yes drinking on Purim?
Rav Shmuel Kamenetsky writes on page 129 of Kovetz Halchos that a woman is obligated to drink a rivies of wine on Purim, and that she can fulfil this obligation with grape juice (see footnote 231).
In footnote 230, he holds that since women are obligated in all the mitzvos of the day, they are also obligated to drink a little wine, but to drink a lot of wine is an issur and degrading for women, as it says in Kesuvos 65a. The Kehillos Yaakov in Orchos Rabbeinu 3:97 paskens the same.
See also Rivevos Ephraim 7:210, and other tshuvos of his in chelek 1 and 4. (I don’t remember siman.)
The following sources indicate that though women are included in all the mitzvos of the day of Purim (Megillah 4a, Pri Megadim Eishel Avraham 695:14) this does not include drinking:
Rivevos Ephraim 1:458, 4:173:10, 53, Mekadesh Yisroel Purim 334, Moadim V’zemanim (Rav Moshe Shternbuch shlitah) 2:190, Natei Gavriel Purim 73:4, Shevet HaLevi 10:18:2, Shulchan Aruch Hamekutzar 123:footnote 19. See Shaar Hatzion 199:6.
Source: Halachically Speaking 10:3 page 12 (pdf)
According to Rabbi Efrayim Greenblat (a student of Rabbi Moshe Feinstein), in his work Rivevot Efrayim, it is inappropriate for a woman to drink intoxicating beverages, even on Purim.
Source: Rivevot Efrayim (1:458), taken from http://www.dailyhalacha.com/Display.asp?PageIndex=&ClipID=1596
I heard from the Rivevos Ephrayim's uncle R. Nota Greenblatt Shlita that perhaps women are pattur from mitzvos on Purim as mitzvos assei shehazman grama, except for Megilla which is zecher lanes and they were also involved in the nes. It is possible that the s'udah which is likely for simcha is not included. Drinking would seem to be a part of the Seudah as implied by Rambam Hil. Megillah 2:15.
[Furthermore on a technical level, even if the drinking also serves to commemorate the miracle that isnt sufficient to obligate them, for there are other commandments such as succah which the Torah describes as being "so that your descendants shall know that I settled you in Succos" yet women are exempt from. This is because (as explained by R. Soloveitcihk and presumably earlier writers) the commandment of succah is not defined as a commemoration of the miracle; rather the commemoration is merely a theme of the commandment. Readiing the Megillah which is the Gemara's example of the obligation of women on Purim is different because the commandment is technically classified as being a commemoration. Thus even according to the opinions that drinking on Purim is to commemorate the miracles that came about through wine, it is still entirely possible that women would be exempt.]
Nit'ei Gavriel says women do not need to drink at all.
Women drinking is generally discouraged. In Kesubos 65a the Gemara discusses giving a widow wine. Rashi says the reason we do not is that it increases sexual desire. However, if she is used to it, the Gemara says that it doesn't affect her (so we do give her).
This means that an amount not reasonably assumed to affect her is okay, but not more. I think that it is a reasonable assessment that purim drinking exceeds that threshold.
Maybe the Gemara itself never included women. It says chayav inash--a man is obligated... Maybe that's just Purim Torah...maybe not.
The Rambam says by hilchos yom tov in general where he famously states that men women and children get simchah in different ways on yom tov. The source for it being simchah on Purim is Moadim Vizmanim based on the Gra. This is where he points out children don't drink, the same ligic applies to women. Also note, the Brisker Rav basically states that it is the simchah of drinking in Emek Brachah I think. Additional, thirds fits with the shiur of arur/baruch only being a Petur.
Women are not included in the mitzvah of drinking for happiness as codified by the Rambam, so it was always a nonstarter. Nowadays, there are women who like to drink, so modern Poskim point out that it isn't tznius to do so.
Let's keep this simple:
Women do not get simchah from wine.
Purim drinking is for simchah.
Therefore, women don't drink.
This doesn't mean you buy new clothes, it doesn't mean a lady can't enjoy wine; it means women never had a reason to drink in the first place.
Now, I am about as ignorant as they come, so I can't source this or predict what inferences the internet will make from it, but I can't stand to read what people write. I better take my own advice and go learn something.
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protected by Community♦ May 1 '16 at 1:27
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