Jewish widows dating
"It was like something out of a biblical play, only we were forced to do it in the 21st century.
"It was humiliating for me and it was humiliating for my brother-in-law," Sarah said of the ceremony.
According to the Torah, if a man dies without leaving children, his brother must marry his widow in a ceremony called yibbum.
To prevent such forced marriages–which reportedly still occur, though very rarely, in highly traditional Sephardic Jewish communities–most rabbis strongly encourage halitza, in which a man’s brother relinquishes all claims to his sister-in-law.
"At the same time, he can refuse to free the woman but the woman cannot refuse to marry the man." When halitza was first conceived, women throughout the world were considered the property of their husband’s family.
"Society in general was patriarchal and women belonged to her husband’s family," Baumgarten said.The second solution harks to medieval times, when some rabbis included a clause in the Jewish marriage contract (ketuba) stating that yibbum would not be required if the groom died childless.
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