JTA — A Belgian model was spit at and chased for walking completely naked through the largely Hasidic Brooklyn neighborhood of Williamsburg. Marisa Papen and her crew undertook the photo shoot on March 21, at the end of the Purim holiday, but posted a video of the chase on her website just last week. She walked naked throughout the neighborhood, including posing in front of a yeshiva school bus and in front of a synagogue. She said that some of the men got aggressive and others looked at her as if she had risen from the dead, others -as seen in the photos posted on her website, just looked away.
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By Doree Lewak. No skin is allowed to be shown — even summer legs and feet must be clad in pantyhose. And yet, when she decided to surprise her husband on his birthday earlier this year, she gifted him with pictures from a sexy boudoir photo shoot, in which she provocatively poses in nothing more than a sheer white shirt and sky-high heels. Boudoir photo shoots, traditionally popular among the secular set, are now a growing trend in Orthodox communities. Lea , who typically photographs weddings, says that boudoir bookings for the Hasidic community in Flatbush, Brooklyn, now account for 35 percent of her overall business — she currently juggles around 40 such shoots a year, up from just a handful when she started three years ago. She asked that her last name be withheld for fear of a backlash from her fellow Orthodox Jews. Why not?
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Photo by Renata Bystritsky. The Bushwick basement, filled with the chatter of young artists and performers in silver tube tops and floral skirts, fell silent as a woman with a long black braid sat down on a large chair. To signal the beginning of her performance piece, she leaned over a prayer book, and began to sway. I am an artist. Erenthal's performance was intensely, comprehensively personal. Her pre-recorded voice, which came through the loudspeaker in slightly accented, melodic sentences that came to sharp, uncertain ends, went on to explain how as an ultra-Orthodox Jew, she was taught that being modest was her greatest responsibility as a woman. Erenthal enumerated the strict laws of modesty that she was forced to adhere to: the covered collar bone, the stockings, the skirt six inches below the knee. Erenthal stood and touched the costume she wore, her chest rising and falling rapidly.
They admitted to religious taboos ranging from same-sex attraction to extramarital affairs. The treatment they received was alarmingly severe. J oseph, a thin man with a delicate bearing and soft gray eyes, has a mellifluous accent that is hard to place — evidence of growing up in the United States but in a world apart. He worked as a travel agent, spending his days arranging flights to far flung places, often for people with more freedom than he could ever dream of. Like many Hasidim, Joseph who, like several of the people interviewed for this article, requested that his real name not be used here married at twenty. His wife was the first woman he had ever touched, and she got pregnant soon after their wedding. But their sex life left much to be desired for both partners, and then petered out altogether.