From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
          This article is of interest to the following WikiProjects:
WikiProject Judaism (Rated B-class, High-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Judaism, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of Judaism-related articles on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
B-Class article B  This article has been rated as B-Class on the project's quality scale.
 High  This article has been rated as High-importance on the project's importance scale.
WikiProject Human rights (Rated B-class, Mid-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Human rights, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of Human rights on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
B-Class article B  This article has been rated as B-Class on the project's quality scale.
 Mid  This article has been rated as Mid-importance on the project's importance scale.
WikiProject Israel (Rated B-class, Low-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Israel, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of Israel on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
B-Class article B  This article has been rated as B-Class on the project's quality scale.
 Low  This article has been rated as Low-importance on the project's importance scale.

I've NPOVed this a bit. I was wondering if there is a legal reference for Judge Menachem ha-Kohen's verdict of >400,000 NIS for withholding a get. JFW | T@lk 15:27, 20 July 2005 (UTC)

We need more modern-day sources as well. Could anyone reference a cause celebre agunah case here? JFW | T@lk 20:37, 11 September 2005 (UTC)

One example of the "lion's den" case is women whose husbands died in the Twin Towers. Even if their husbands's bodies were not identified, women have been alowed to remarry. Chani

Could you provide a source that we could WP:CITE for this? This is a very good modern-day example that would really inform the article, Chani. JFW | T@lk 22:46, 21 January 2006 (UTC)

But after all this todo the husband shows up, it seems to hit the fan anyway. This todo appears provisional at best - not a real divorce just a standin separation cum new marriage in hopes the old hubbie stays dead.


Redaktor (talk · contribs) changed the spelling to "aguna", which seems to be supported by a Google search. However, the page title is still AgunaH. Anyone object to a formal move? JFW | T@lk 16:15, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

This move has my strong support. --Redaktor 16:30, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

At first glance, it just didn't look right to me, so I looked up similar words, and this is what I found:

We don't yet have an article on "Schinah".

On the other hand, I found:

When I did a Google search; "aguna" had double the amount of hits then "agunah", but "agunah's" hits were more of substance. Also when doing the search on "aguna"; Google asked "Did you mean: laguna ?"; kind of not sure if this is what I meant.

Based on all this; in my humble opinion "agunah" is correct, with "aguna" redirected to it. Itzse 21:09, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

BTW, I always regretted not calling myself "Itzseh" or "Itzeh"! Itzse 21:11, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

I don't think we can ever decide what is 'correct'. We can try though to find a sensible and consistent spelling. There really is no good reason for the final 'h' in most of these words. Judah is clearly an exception since it has passed into the English language that way.--Redaktor 22:22, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
You have a point; but I think that most of these words written with an "h" are actually pronounced "ah" closer to a "mapik heh" then for example "tuna" where the "a" doesn't continue with a flourish. I think we can say that Tuna is pronounced Tu-na but agunah or aguna is pronounced agun-ah. Whatever you decide is fine with me, I was only trying to clarify the issue. Itzse 19:08, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I hope no-one thinks it should be pronounced agun-ah, because that would indeed not be correct. The pronunciation is agu-na. Discussion here also tends to favour omission of final silent he. --Redaktor 12:42, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

Being refused a get - not an agunah?[edit]

Tltdma (talk · contribs) removed from the intro the paragraph that describes the plight of women whose husbands refuse to grant a get as means of extortion. I don't understand his point that "this is not the halachic definition of agunah". Well, Wikipedia does not use halacha as a content guideline - almost everybody refers to these women as agunot. That includes a long cover article in the Jewish Observer some years ago. Lishna de-alma nakat. JFW | T@lk 14:05, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

I think the article needs to seperate the modern usage, which is technically incorrect, from the classical usage. Wikipedia is not a halachic dictionary, but here it is defining a halachic term. To confuse it with a modern activist term is not informative.

The term in its classical sense refers to a woman who cannot remarry because her marital status is in doubt. That's the definition of the word. A woman who is not recieving a get because her husband doesn't want a divorce is halachicly an ishes ish. She's stam a married woman. She has a right to collect support from her husbands estate, he must still provide for her physical and medical needs, and if he dies her children inherit property and she walks away capable of marrying a cohen. A real aggunah is in a much harsher reality where she is under all the chumros of a married woman and all the chumros of a single woman.

Both definitons need to be mentioned, but the sections should be clearly seperated. It might even be helpful to seperate the articles into Agunah (Jewish Law) and Agunah (Social Problem), or something similar. Basejumper2 07:39, 5 September 2007 (UTC)

Solutions proposed[edit]

For a lengthy discussion on the proposed solutions to agunot see Jewish Women in Jewish Law by Rabbi Moshe Meiselman.

Statistics and incidence[edit]

Does anyone have any figures to indicate how many couples are affected by aguna issues, and what proportion of the population it represents? That would a valuable addition to the article. --Redaktor 12:46, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

If we are speaking of Agunahs as women who's husbands are unaccounted for, then there are right now very few. After ww1, the holocaust, the refugee migration to the US, the war of independence and the subsequent sephardi migration, they were prevelant and unfortunately probably will be again if similar tragedies arise. As to agunahs as women who's husbands do not want to give them a get, there's no way to know, but the article has some interesting numbers in it already. Basejumper2 14:20, 6 September 2007 (UTC)

The incidence is very low. Recently published figures in Israel show that there are less than 400 couples affected in Israel - with slightly more men than women being refused a get. "Rabbinate Stats: 180 Women, 185 Men 'Chained' by Spouses". Israel National News. 2007-08-23. Retrieved 2007-08-26. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

According to the article it notes men and women about the same according to the Rabbinate yet in life I hear about only women who have issues, and I mean real issues, almost no men as they can easily write-off the wide at will.{Unsigned|}}

Because of anti-religious considerations, some like to portrait the religious world as cruel and anti-women. That is, IMHP, the only reason. Debresser (talk) 18:39, 15 January 2015 (UTC)

Fell into a lion's den[edit]

I corrected the citation from Masekhet Yevamot according to a well established correction in the Hebrew equivalent article. There is one detail which I don't know how to incorporate in the article. In Israel, where civil marriage is impossible, but there is a system of common law marriage, many secular men don't wait too long for their wife's acceptance of the get, and simply live with their new partners under the common law marriage terms. If their new partner is single or divorcee, it doesn't affect the status of their new children, but it does create a strange case of ad-hoc bigamy (if they die without leaving a will, bothe women are entitled to their share in his property, according to a supreme court ruling). Being stigmatized as mamzer is still a strong holdback which prevents "chanined women", even secular ones, from acting similarly. DrorK 05:28, 10 September 2007 (UTC)

This sentence seems very misleading.[edit]

(Before you read the following comment of mine. Know that, at present, my objection has been rendered moot by recent edits.) Veecort (talk) 23:26, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

This sentence has a very prominent location within the article.

While it is widely assumed that the problem lies primarily in men refusing to grant their wives a get, and that it is a widespread issue; in Israel, figures released from the chief rabbinate show that men are equally victimized and that the numbers are actually a couple of hundred on each side.

(I bolded the words that seem misleading. Though... The sentence, while well constructed, does address two separate and distinct misconceptions in one long sentence. Maybe it is too much info for one sentence.) I only just heard about the phenomenon of agunah. But, there are a few things I don't like about the sentence. According to the source being cited...

1) Being refused divorce(/annulment) is not such a big "problem" for a man. (Forgive me if that sounds crass.)

2) Saying "equally victimized" leads one to believe that being a male agunah is as bad as being a female agunah. (I know there is no such thing as a male agunah. I was kind of trying to prove a point and kind of being lazy.)

Following is an excerpt from the cited source that helps to demonstrate my point. (This is not a subject that I am interested in studying, so I would rather not devote too much time and effort to familiarizing myself with the issue. In other words, at present, I have no intention of ever being able to claim that I know what I am talking about.)

A woman suffers more in this situation, as she is Biblically forbidden to marry again, and children she might bear to another man would be considered bastards according to Halakhah [Jewish Law]. A man is similarly not permitted to marry before being divorced, but the ban is much less severe, and in any event his future children will not be considered illegitimate.

Veecort (talk) 17:02, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

Nevermind.Veecort (talk) 23:26, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

Recent additions[edit]

Please review WP:NPOV, and in particular WP:UNDUE. The recent additions are the thoughts of a very small minority שיטה יחידאה, are not necessarily reflective of the current majority Orthodox opinion, and are thus inappropriate for a general article in the encyclopedia, especially in the volume in which they were presented. The sourcing is not the issue, it is the WP:FRINGEness of it that is. -- Avi (talk) 17:35, 4 March 2010 (UTC)

I think that you should add your belief that this is the belief of a small minority, if that is what you think, rather than leaving it out of an encyclopedia article. I personally made sure that I indicated that even Mnachem Risikoff offered his opinions as issues to be discussed in an halkhic framework, not to be implemented -- and the fact that 4 recent books have cited his views, thinking that the fact that an ultra-orthodox rabbi had advanced those ideas so early on, seemed significant to them!!
I think it is NOT a small minority belief that such ideas be DISCUSSED, rather than implemented. In any event, for an article on agunah not to include the fact that such issues have been raised -- even if the article then notes that they were ultimately not accepted -- is not doing justice to the subject. And, I should add, this was not some fringe idea by someone whose orthodoxy was "suspect" by others.
I absolutely believe this section should stay in the article, although I believe you have the right (and perhaps even the responsibility) of framing them with sentences that state the ideas never were put into action by recognized orthodox authorities.
By the way, did you look at the references? These authors are well respected!
Floridarabbi (talk) 17:44, 4 March 2010 (UTC)

The sources are not the point, the opinion is. I have asked for others to comment here at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Judaism#Agunah; let us see what other participants have to say. -- Avi (talk) 17:49, 4 March 2010 (UTC)

  • Agree with FloridaRabbi that the fact that there are opinions in the orthodox world searching for solutions should be in this article. I agree also with Avi that the format at the moment is in violation of WP:UNDUE. I suggest that a two line (max) mention should be made with a See main directing to R' Risikof's article. The opinion and the explanation belongs there and not in this article. This article should make brief mention of it and no more. Joe407 (talk) 05:47, 5 March 2010 (UTC)
  • Comment Perhaps a sentence or two with a wikilink to Risikoff would be appropriate, but the volume of material there now added by someone intimately acquainted with the Risikoffs (see the contributions of the user) is a violation of WP:UNDUE. -- Avi (talk) 17:58, 7 March 2010 (UTC)
  • Comment Sounds like it's getting personal here,and I want to avoid that. In fact, if in discussion I had been advised to cut down the note to a couple of sentences, instead of having everthing I had written deleted -- twice -- there would never have been an argument on my part. I admit I am relatively new to wikipedia. I have just now cut down the reference to Risikoff, and left multiple references to works that reference him (as well as other rabbis) in major ongoing studies of this issue. I have also added the fact that there are orthodox rabbis (including Emanuel Rackman z"l) who have taken it upon themselves to annul marriages, but these unilateral actions have so far been condemned. I think this section is very important to an encyclopedia article on the agunah, and has improved the article as a whole. If others think it should be changed even more, then, of course, it should be. And by the way, creating the page on Risikoff was what led me to add something about him to this page -- but a recent article by Gershon Greenberg, on another subject (the Holocaust) devoted 16 pages to his writings. He was a prolific writer, often quoted and cited -- including in many works (some cited here) about the agunah. Floridarabbi (talk) 21:21, 7 March 2010 (UTC)
Floridarabbi - Thank you for your revisions. I feel that this is no longer in violation of WP:UNDUE. Thank you also for your civility in this debate. Avi? What say you? Joe407 (talk) 04:36, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
Much better. I think that the section is lacking in that there are many, many cases over the centuries of how Orthodox Judaism tried to deal with this horrible problem, and there must be thousands of t’shuvos on this, but, not being a baki in Even HaEzer, I don't know of enough to flesh out the section. -- Avi (talk) 05:05, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
Thank you both for your guidance and help! Avi, I do reference the Freimann book, and mention there is a chapter that gives a good history of many of the teshuvot you mention, over a period of 2000 years -- so someone who wants more can go there. So I hope that's a help, as well. Again, thank you both for helping me as I get more involved with Wikipedia! Floridarabbi (talk) 13:06, 8 March 2010 (UTC)

The Agunah[edit]

I've created an article on the Chaim Grade novel, The Agunah, and I am mentioning it here in case anyone thinks it is worthy of inclusion in this article, perhaps in the hatnote.— Preceding unsigned comment added by Choor monster (talkcontribs)

Done. -M.Altenmann >t 23:43, 27 November 2014 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just added archive links to one external link on Agunah. Please take a moment to review my edit. If necessary, add {{cbignore}} after the link to keep me from modifying it. Alternatively, you can add {{nobots|deny=InternetArchiveBot}} to keep me off the page altogether. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, please set the checked parameter below to true to let others know.

YesY Archived sources have been checked to be working

Cheers.—cyberbot IITalk to my owner:Online 13:56, 11 January 2016 (UTC)

Checked and found that the information is not in the source, so I added a tag to it. Debresser (talk) 17:34, 11 January 2016 (UTC)
While blogspot itself is not a reliable source, perhaps someone has the time to listen to the interview as regards how R' Elyashiv felt about this issue, as well as R' Moshe, and yibadel machayim l'chayim R'Dovid feel about hafkaa and prenups: -- Avi (talk) 18:23, 11 January 2016 (UTC)
Regarding the two sources of R' Zalman Nechemia Goldberg, I was not able to find on-line versions. However, it is clear he has wrote against using Hafka'ah this way a number of times (see where it quotes a translation of a letter of R' Goldberg specifically mentioning the Tehumin article(s)). -- Avi (talk) 19:16, 11 January 2016 (UTC)
The sources are examples of rabbis who say these measures are against halakha, or they say that "most Orthodox leaders" hold that they are against halakha? Because it is the latter we need, not the first. Debresser (talk) 06:25, 12 January 2016 (UTC)
The article from Weider and R' Cohen say that historically and modernly it is not used nor accepted for use. I couldn't find the two Goldberg sources to confirm, so perhaps we should delete those for now. -- Avi (talk) 21:23, 12 January 2016 (UTC)
I think we should. Debresser (talk) 21:49, 12 January 2016 (UTC)

Removed from the lead[edit]

I've removed the following content from the lead, because WP:NOTNEWS:

In a 2015 case a beth din (rabbinical court) published an advertisement naming a man who had refused his (ex-)wife a get for 15 years, refusing him entry into any synagogue and suggesting that people should avoid social and business contact with him.[1] Ten years before an advert criticising a man who had denied his wife a get had been placed by the beth din, but without calling for action.[1]
In 2007 the Chief Rabbinate found that in Israel men and women were refused divorce in equal numbers, 180 women and 185 men over a two-year period. The Director-General of the Rabbinical Courts said this showed that "the claims by women's organizations of thousands of women whose husbands refuse to give them divorces have no basis in reality".[2] Nevertheless,

"A woman suffers more in this situation, as she is Biblically forbidden to marry again, and children she might bear to another man would be considered mamzerim (bastards) according to halakhah. A man is similarly not permitted to marry before being divorced, but the ban is much less severe (because monogamy was instituted by one single overreaching authority in Europe in around the year 1000CE, and was accepted in Europe (Ashkenazim), whereas Sefardic and Mizrahi (Eastern) Jewish communities did not until very recently.) This considered, his future children will not be considered illegitimate."[2]

There is a need for this article to be less about events and initiatives and more about the big picture. JFW | T@lk 16:31, 13 January 2016 (UTC)

I have restored the statistical information. I agree about individual cases, but it is important to know how many cases there are, and how they are divided between the sexes. Perhaps you removed that part by mistake. In either case, it should definitely be in the article. Debresser (talk) 19:34, 13 January 2016 (UTC)