Parashat Vayishlach contains a narrative that is “rated R,” one that is often skipped over in religious school. This week’s Torah portion describes how Dina, the daughter of Yaakov and Leah, “went out” of the confines of her village and ended up in the city-state of Shechem. We do not know why Dina left her hometown but we do know that the son of a Shechem aristocrat almost took Dina as his wife. This narrative is replete with images of assault, force, love, and family ties, yet we never hear from the main character herself. Rabbinic literature, including many Midrashim, often blame Dina, her mother Leah, as well as women in general for bringing upon the sad situation that occurred in Shechem.
Why do you think Dina left her home in the first place?
Why do you think Dina does not have a voice in the Torah?