Welcome to Ludmir, Ukraine. The year is 1806, and the revolutionary Hannah Rachel Vermermacher, also known as the Maiden of Ludmir, is shaking up the traditional Jewish world. Born into affluence, Hannah Rachel’s life took a transformative turn, leading her to embrace the role of a Hasidic rabbi, or rebbe. Despite facing objections and rumors, she chose an independent path, attracting followers seeking her guidance, and breaking a few societal norms along the way. Eventually, Hannah Rachel ventured to Jerusalem, expanding her influence as her teachings spread across the broader Jewish world. Join Yael and Schwab as they discover the enduring impact of the Maiden of Ludmir’s unique story, uncovering a harmonious blend of mysticism and independence.

This episode was hosted by Jonathan Schwab and Yael Steiner. Our education lead is Dr. Henry Abramson. Audio was edited by Rob Pera, and we’re produced by Rivky Stern.

For more on the Maiden of Ludmir, and this episode: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1xPOaXDHbiTh_hHoJHaV32jlg9CVsWiGYKOFMntzmYo4/edit#heading=h.ox6pluiqfvx2