Shavuot, which was originally an ancient pilgrimage festival, has gone through many changes over the years – as has Judaism itself.
Judith Kaplan became the first American bat mitzvah in 1922. The Jewish coming-of-age ceremony has become more popular for girls ever since.
Exam revision and parties are a traditional part of growing up.
Historically, indigenous people celebrated a girl’s transition to womanhood with a year-long ritual. Many such ritual practices were made ‘illegal’ by the US and Canadian governments.
The Jewish coming-of-age ritual of bar mitzvah evolved to its current form during the time of Enlightenment, when Jewish families feared losing their traditions.