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The Only Woman in the Room: Golda Meir and Her Path to Power

Lahav explores the life of Golda Meir through the gender lens. At each stage in her life Golda was expected to conform to prevailing gender stereotypes, for example, her parents dismissed education as unnecessary for a well brought up woman. Later in her life, senior cabinet members did not think a woman could have a deep comprehension of military matters. Lahav discusses Golda’s senior positions in government, as Minister of Labor, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Prime Minister and shows how gender stereotypes affected her at every stage. 

Date & Time

Thursday
Oct. 13, 2022
4:00pm – 5:30pm ET

Location

Zoom Webinar

Overview

Lahav explores the life of Golda Meir through the gender lens. At each stage in her life Golda was expected to conform to prevailing gender stereotypes, for example, her parents dismissed education as unnecessary for a well brought up woman. Later in her life, senior cabinet members did not think a woman could have a deep comprehension of military matters. Lahav discusses Golda’s senior positions in government, as Minister of Labor, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Prime Minister and shows how gender stereotypes affected her at every stage. 

Pnina Lahav is a professor of law (emerita) and a member of the Elie Wiesel Center for Jewish Studies at Boston University. She earned her LL.B. at Hebrew University in Jerusalem (Magna Cum Laude) and her S.J.D at Yale Law School. Lahav has written extensively on Israeli legal history, freedom of expression, and women’s rights. Her 1974 article “The Status of Women in Israel: Myth and Reality” pioneered the field of women legal studies in Israel. Lahav is the recipient of the 2017 Life Achievement Award from the Association for Israel Studies and the Israel Institute and the 2022 Golda Meir Prize from the Golda Meir Foundation for Society and Leadership.

The Washington History Seminar is co-chaired by Eric Arnesen (George Washington University) and Christian Ostermann (Woodrow Wilson Center) and is organized jointly by the American Historical Association and the Woodrow Wilson Center's History and Public Policy Program. It meets weekly during the academic year. The seminar thanks its anonymous individual donors and institutional partner (the George Washington University History Department) for their continued support.

Speaker

Pnina Lahav

Pnina Lahav

Professor of Law (emerita) and a member of the Elie Wiesel Center for Jewish Studies, Boston University

Panelists

Arie M. Dubnov

Arie M. Dubnov

Associate Professor of History & the Max Ticktin Chair of Israel Studies, the George Washington University
Guy Laron

Guy Laron

Fellow;
Senior Lecturer, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel

Hosted By

History and Public Policy Program

The History and Public Policy Program makes public the primary source record of 20th and 21st century international history from repositories around the world, facilitates scholarship based on those records, and uses these materials to provide context for classroom, public, and policy debates on global affairs.  Read more

Middle East Program

The Wilson Center’s Middle East Program serves as a crucial resource for the policymaking community and beyond, providing analyses and research that helps inform U.S. foreign policymaking, stimulates public debate, and expands knowledge about issues in the wider Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.  Read more