Limud Torah
Mon, 18 Nov 1996 18:40:25 -0500

I am trying to get a handle on the issue of women and Torah learning.
While it seems to be widely accepted today for women to learn Torah, if we
are to look only at Torah source, how is this idea viewed? We know that while
there is a concept of sha'at ha'd'chak, (exceptions that may be made for
extenuating times or circumstances), the reality of a Torah view is L'Maalah
min haz'man, superceding time restraints and the generation gap.
Here is some of the information that I accept as fact -
- The Rambam says that women are not mekabelet schar k'ish (do not acquire
reward like a man) for learning Torah. (Rambam, hilchot Talmud Torah 1:13)
- Gemara Sotah, 21, states that if you teach your daughter Torah,(interpreted
by some to mean all Torah, and by others to mean Torah Shebe'al Peh) is
equated with teaching her tiflut (immmorality).

There are still these issues which I would like to understand.
1- Is it permitted for women to learn gemara, ( and if there is a disagreement
between Poskim [halachik authorities] who says what?
2- Is a women who sits and learns Torah in her every spare moment greater
than a women who involves herself in projects of chessed, or is there any way
for us to measure this?
3- What is this same women learned in every spare moment only those topics
which pertained to Mitzvot to which she is obligated to keep? Would this
change any part of the above question or answer?

Hoping to hear from you soon,
Moshe Tohn