One of the interesting phenomenon over the years is the proliferation of shiurim on Tisha B’Av. In our Shul, in addition to some live shiurim, we show both Chofetz Chaim Heritage Foundation videos. To handle the crowd we show the videos in 2 different locations in the Shul simultaneously. About 400 people view these videos, with a breakdown of approximately 300 women and 100 men. This gender gap also exists for the shiurim that are not halacha or Gemora oriented.
Three possible explanation for this gap are:
1. When men go out to learn it will be for Daf Yomi or to learn with a chavrusa.
2. Women are more drawn to lecture/inspiration shiurim than men and perhaps gain more from these types of shiurum.
3. Women do not have enough opportunities to learn, so they take full advantage when shiurim are given.
Most likely it’s a combination of factors.
An obvious takeaway from this is to schedule more shiurim for women. In our Shul this has been addressed by creating a women’s shiur committee under the direction of the Rebbetzin and the Rabbi. Many of the shiurim are schedule on Shabbos afternoon when more women have the opportunity to attend. To address the cost issue, many of the shiurim are given by women and local Rebbeim who are willing to give shiurim for free.
In our Kew Gardens Hills community there are also a number of regular shiurim organized in local homes. Bigger events are held in the Shuls and we are fortunate to host a number of them in our Shul during the course of the year. Thank God that lots of good work is being done to addressing this growing need.
One thought on “Addressing The Shiur Gender Gap”
Surely explanation 1 doesn’t make a lot of sense if you’re discussing Tisha B’Av? (Except for dedicated men learning 9-Av-appropriate topics with a chavrusa)
I would have thought that after a whole morning saying kinnos in shul many of the missing men are at home minding children (so their wives can attend shiurim/videos) or resting or something like that.
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