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Design: Jaya Mirani

Jaya, Aviad, and Roi
Forgotten Heroines
of Jerusalem and Munich

Why do we remember some people and their acts of resistance, while others are overlooked?

In this podcast we will take you on a journey through Jerusalem and Munich to uncover the stories of Bella Freund, Ellen Ammann, and Rachel Yanait Ben-Zvi. We will uncover how and when they were remembered and why most people in Jerusalem and Munich either do not know their names or have only a very limited perception of them.

For our exploration we rely on different sources, like the song “Bella Belissima” of the Jerusalemite band HaDag Nachash (“The Fish Snake”) which is dedicated to the Jewish orthodox Bella Freund. Some people might know this song, but most do not make the connection to her selfless act in the 1990s when she saved with her own body a Palestinian, who had stabbed two people at the Jerusalem market, from the crowd which tried to lynch him. Ellen Ammann has only been remembered very recently in a few media items. Despite her courageous act which helped to prevent the 1923 Hitler Putsch in Munich her name still remains mostly unknown in Germany. And most Israelis know Rahel Yanait Ben-Zvi mainly as the wife of Itzhak Ben-Zvi, even though she was very active in her own right. In 1919 she founded a progressive agricultural school for girls next to Jerusalem, long before her husband became President of Israel.

We present to you three women who are all heroines in their own way and never got the attention in history and from the public that they deserve in our opinion. We tell their stories and try to find out why they have been mostly forgotten. And we discuss what it means to be a heroine. What does it mean to you?

Forgotten Heroines of Jerusalem and Munich
00:00 / 01:04
Group Members

Roi Irani, Jaya Mirani, and Aviad Nahum

Podcast Producer: Jaya Mirani

in order of appearance

Aviad – Amit
Ellen Ammann – Sarah
Franz Ammann – Natan
Ottmar Ammann – Julius
Meli van Godin – Veronika
Lidia Gustava Heymann – Alina
Franz Matt – Imanuel


Diner, Dan (2008). ​Cataclysms: A History of the Twentieth Century from Europe's Edge. Translated by William Templer with Joel Golb. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press.

Bella Freund

HaDag Nachash. “Bella Bellissima” in the Album ​Lazuz​, 2003.

Lyrics: Sha'anan Streett, Guy Margalit, Amir Ben Ami, Moshe "Atraf" Asraf, Dudush Klemes, Yaya Cohen Aharonov & Shlomi Alon

Music: Sha'anan Streett, Guy Margalit, Amir Ben Ami, Dudush Klemes, Yaya Cohen Aharonov & Shlomi Alon

Singer: HaDag Nachash

CD: Lazuz, Track 10

the use of the song was kindly permitted by Anana, Israel

Hefetz, Nava (1998). ​One Bella Against the World​. The Ma'aleh School of Television, Film & the Arts production.

Livne Weitzman, Ben (2012). ​Bela Belisima.​ 

Khanan, Dinel. “Mardi le 12 Mai 1992” on Youtube. 

Klein, Amy (1997). “A Freund in Deed.”​ Hagalil.


Ellen Ammann

Holtmann, Gunda (2017). ​Ellen Ammann: Eine intellektuelle Biographie​. Würzburg: Ergon Verlag.

Berning, Benita. Zwischen Frauenbund und Landtag: Ellen Ammann (1870-1932).” Hypotheses, December 2020. 

Fuchs, Christina. “Pionierin und Powerfrau: Ellen Ammann.” Bayerischer Rundfunk, 28 June 2020.

Richter, Elke. “Frauenführerin und Hitler-Gegnerin.” Süddeutsche Zeitung, 1 July 2020. 

Tsakiridis, Iris. “Die Grenzgängerin.” BR Fernsehen, 27 June 2020.  

Wetzel, Jakob. “Vergessene Widerstandskämpferin.” Süddeutsche Zeitung, 10 November 2013. 

150. Geburtstag der Gründerin Ellen Ammann.” Frauenbund München.

Rachel Yanait Ben-Zvi

 טובה כהן ויהושע שוורץ אשה בירושלים: מגדר ,חברהוד

.עורכים רמת גן: מרכז אינגבורגרנרטל לימודי ירושלים, 2002

Cohen, Tova and Yehushua Scwartz (2002). ​Woman in Jerusalem: gender, society and religion. Ramat Gan: Ingeborg Rennert Center for Jerusalem Studies.

.יואב גלבר, קוממיות ונכבה, אור יהודה: דביר, 2004


Gelber, Yoav (2004). Komemiut and Naqba. Or Yehuda: Dvir.

.רחל ינאית בן-צבי, ​עם הילדים בחזית: חוות הלימוד בירושלים 1928:1948
.רמת גן: מסדה, 1975


Rachel Yanait Ben-Zvi (1975). ​With the children on the front. Ramat Gan: Mesadeh.

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