Sex & Gender

Wanting Memories: the Tender Potential of a Men’s Hevra

For years now, I have searched for the melody of my masculinity in the words and poetry of women’s and non-binary folx’s songs. With this search came an implicit understanding that there was a limit the ability of men, particularly cis-men, to compose gentleness; at best, I believed, we could play out weak imitations of our siblings’ and parents’ music. The men of the hevra kadisha have taught me otherwise. Their care has shown me the possibility that men can contribute new harmonies and timbre to the ongoing composition of our people’s melody of tenderness and care for the living and for the dead.