Knocked Out

Episode 133: Former Jehovah’s Witness Linda Curtis on being shunned by the religion, Rachel Simmons on empowering young girls today, and more

April 26, 2018

This week on Unorthodox, Natalie Portman announces she won’t accept ‘Jewish Nobel Prize’ in Israel, plus Jewish artichoke drama in Italy.

Our Jewish guest is Rachel Simmons, the author of Enough as She Is: How to Help Girls Move Beyond Impossible Standards of Success to Live Healthy, Happy and Fulfilling Lives. Rachel explains the pressures facing young girls in America today, how we can better support our daughters and nieces and friends, and whether things are any better for girls who attend Jewish schools. Our gentile of the week is Linda Curtis, whose memoir Shunned: How I Lost My Religion and Found Myself, chronicles her decision to leave her close-knit Jehovah’s Witness community, which ultimately led to her being formally shunned, or defellowshipped, by the religion. Linda tells us about life as a Jehovah’s Witness, why she left, and why she has no animosity toward the community—and family—that shunned her. Her question for the panel is whether Jews are ever formally excommunicated like she was.

We love hearing from our listeners! Email us at [email protected] or leave a message at our new listener line: 914-570-4869. We may share your note on the air.

Want more Unorthodox in your life? Follow us on Twitter and join our Facebook group to chat with the hosts and see what happens behind-the-scenes! Show your love for Unorthodox with our new T-shirts, sweatshirts, and baby onesies. Get yours here.

This episode is sponsored by Harry’s. Get a free trial shave set when you sign up at

This episode is also sponsored by One Day University, which brings together the greatest professors from the world’s top schools to present special versions of their best lectures live. Register for upcoming events at using the code UNORTHODOX for 30 percent off.

Unorthodox is a smart, fresh, fun weekly take on Jewish news and culture hosted by Mark Oppenheimer, Stephanie Butnick, and Liel Leibovitz. You can listen to individual episodes here or subscribe on iTunes.

More Unorthodox
See all