The Shulchan Aruch (YD 246) codifies the law that women should not be taught the Oral Law. It seems it is also not the best thing to teach even the Written Law, but that if you do, it's not the same problem as teaching the Oral Law.

Regardless, while modern poskim like the Chofeitz Chayim, R. Yosef Dov Soloveitchik, and others have permitted teaching Torah to women based on various reasons, I recently heard the theory that the original "prohibition" against women learning/being taught Torah never applied to an Ishah Chashuvah. Following this logic, just about all women nowadays are considered to be Nashim Chashuvos (consider: the requirement for leaning at the Pesach Seder applies equally to women due to this fact) and thus all women can learn/be taught Torah without any concern for violating this original law in the Shulchan Aruch.

Trouble is, I have not been able to find any sources that discuss this particular idea. (I know of the commentary of the Perishah to the Tur where he picks up on the language of Rambam explaining that the prohibition applies only to "most women" and not women that choose to learn on their own, but that is not quite what I am referring to here. It's not nearly enough.)

Any help?

  • 1
    plural of ishah--nashim
    – wfb
    Mar 19, 2018 at 17:52
  • judaism.stackexchange.com/a/7074/11486
    – ezra
    Mar 19, 2018 at 17:55
  • 1
    This question could be more compelling if you'd edit in more details about where you've heard of the theory you're asking for sources for.
    – Isaac Moses
    Mar 19, 2018 at 17:59
  • 2
    There are sources that make exception for self-motivated women, but I'm unaware of a source that distinguishes in this regard between "important" women and other women. In fact, Rabbi Eliezer in the Y'rushalmi (Sotah 3:4) clearly makes no distinction and refused to discuss Torah with an aristocratic matrona.
    – Fred
    Mar 19, 2018 at 23:22
  • I would urge you to take a listen to the following shiur given by Rabbi Moshe Meiselman, it can be found on yutorah with the following link: yutorah.org/lectures/lecture.cfm/711895/rabbi-moshe-meiselman/… Also see part one chapter 7 in Jewish Women in Jewish Law authored by Rabbi Meiselman. Jul 28, 2022 at 20:53


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