If a Jewish woman lived on an island without any other Jews & she was unable to leave or convert any of the locals, is she permitted to marry & have children? Would there be any difference or preference if the locals were Muslim, atheist, or idolaters?

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    Why might you think that would be permissable? Please edit to clarify. If I'm in McDonald's I can't eat a cheeseburger (even for a required Shabbat meal) because it's all that's available (unless perhaps I was starving and could die; is that the case here without having children?) – Double AA Nov 28 at 14:58
  • Theoretically she might have herself consumed forcefully ( raped) and have children , and that's the only Halachic way of having intimate relations with aGoy for women (see the Esther story on Purim). – Al Berko Nov 29 at 7:42
  • Huh? No. rape is not legitimate. Ever! The OP asks why should a women need to marry and have children? there is no mitzvah for her to get married (see Hilchos Ishus Rambam ch. 1), The mitzvah is on the man - see Sefer HaChinuch and Minchas Chinuch there. – user18323 Nov 29 at 13:19
  • @DoubleAA "... and could die; is that the case here without having children"? Made me think of "ותאמר אל-יעקב הבה-לי בנים, ואם-אין מתה אנכי" (Bereshit 31:1), and Rashi there: "מכאן למי שאין לו בנים שחשוב כמת" (Based on Bereshit Rabah 71:6). – Tamir Evan Nov 30 at 12:17
  • Wether or not allowed, her children (according to some halachic rulings) would still be considered Jewish. Most of the time though it’s considered as a prohebition, because the partner could pull them away from their Jewish background (assimilation). – Levi Nov 30 at 21:57

Here are some Halachic considerations:

  1. A Jewish woman is NOT obligated to marry and have children (Rambam Hichiot Ishut)

  2. A Jewish woman can not marry a non-Jew unless he's properly converted.

  3. Because a woman is [thought to be] passive in intimate relations (called קרקע עולם - the seabed), she's not considered transgressing if being fornicated forcefully, like in the Megilat Esther story. Therefore, she can cohabit and have kids in this way - subjugated to a non-Jew. Bonus: the kids are still considered 100% Jews.

  4. Clarification, based on the above a Jewish woman should not prefer death to intimate relations with a non-Jew, unlike a Jewish man (also disputable).

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