Diane Samuels, USA
Zelophehad’s five daughters — Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Tirzah — advocated for and succeeded in changing land ownership law from a solely male inheritance. Upon his death, Zelophehad had no male heirs and the daughters wisely argued that their father’s name would be lost should they not be granted a named portion. The five daughters were victorious, though toward the end of the Book of Numbers the members of their tribe protest. As a result, the daughters of Zelophehad must marry within their tribe in order to keep the estate. Still, we remember the daughters for their brave advocacy in a time in which such protest by women was rare.
Professional Background Diane Samuels is a visual artist with both studio and public arts practices. In both, she works collaboratively within communities to develop multi-disciplinary, text based works of intricate detail. Samuels holds BA and MA degrees from Carnegie Mellon University. In 2013, she was recipient of a Rockefeller Bellagio Residency in Italy and an American Academy in Jerusalem Fellowship.