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Lectures in 2012-13

Individual Lectures

Thursday, October 4, 2012. Holger Zellentin, University of Nottingham, “Rabbinic Historiography as a Response to Christian Triumphalism: The Destruction of the Temple in Aramaic, Syriac and Greek Discourse.” Sponsored by the Jewish Studies Workshop and the Medieval Studies Workshop.

Monday, October 15, 2012.  Erik Dreff, Ph.D. Student, “Rosenzweig’s Star as a System of Philosophy.”Presented by the Jewish Studies Workshop.

Monday, October 15, 2012. Liane Marquis, Ph.D. Student, “The Composition of Numbers 32: A New Proposal.” Presented by the Hebrew Bible Workshop.

Monday, October 15, 2012. Eran Shalev, Senior Lecturer, Haifa University, “The Debate on Slavery and the Decline of the Old Testament as a Political Text.” Sponsored by the Karla Scherer Center for the Study of American Culture and the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies.

Monday, October 22, 2012.  David Gottlieb, Ph.D. Student, “Rupture, Reflection and Renewal: Mimesis and the Transformation of Meaning in Leviticus Rabbah.” Presented by the Jewish Studies Workshop.

December 3, 2012.  Tamar Merin, “So Did I Write All That is Written in this Book”: The Dialogic Rise of Israeli Women’s Prose Fiction.” Dr. Merin, author of “So did I write all that is written in this book”: Inter-Sexual Dialogue and the Rise of Israeli Women’s Prose, is fulfilling a post-doctoral appointment at Northwestern University. Presented by the Jewish Studies Workshop.

January 15, 2013. Arkady Kovelman, Director of Jewish Studies, Lomonosov Moscow State University, “The Legacy of Russian Humanities from the Perspective of a Professor of Jewish Studies.” Presented by the Jewish Studies Workshop and co-sponsored with the Center for Easter European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies and the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies.

January 16, 2013. Consul General Roey Gilad. As part of the Diplomatic Encounters Series, this lecture presented the opportunity to meet and hear from Israel’s highest ranking official in the Midwest. Presented by the International House Global Voices Program and co-sponsored by the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies and the Center for Middle Eastern Studies.

January 28, 2013. Charles Huff, Ph.D. Student, “Sabbath and Death.” Presented by the Hebrew Bible Workshop.

February 8, 2013. Rebecca Scharbach Wollenberg, Ph.D. Candidate, “Written Torah as an Ambivalent Descriptor: Imagining the Text of the Hebrew Bible after the Rise of Christianity.” A response was given by Lisa Scott, Ph.D. Student. The lecture was presented by the Medieval Studies Workshop.

February 20, 2013. Yakir Englander, “The Problem of the Body: Ultra Orthodox Strategies for Formulating an A-feminine Public Sphere in Israel.” Yakir Englander is a post-doctoral fellow in Israel studies and a visiting professor of religious studies at Northwestern University. He is a specialist in modern Jewish philosophy with a focus on gender issues. Presented by the Center for Middle Eastern Studies and co-sponsored by the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies.

February 21, 2013. Bernard Wasserstein, Harriet & Ulrich E. Meyer Professor of Modern European Jewish History, University of Chicago, “Hitler’s Little Helpers: Arab and Jewish Axis Agents in British Mandatory Palestine, 1939-1945.” This was the  2013 Nicholson Faculty Lecture sponsored by the Nicholson Center for British Studies at the University of Chicago with the support of the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies.

February 22, 2013. John Tolan, Professor of History, Universite de Nantes, “Western European Jewry in the First Age of Expulsion: 1182-1306.” Response by David Frankel, PhD student in the History of Judaism. Presented by the Medieval Studies Workshop and co-sponsored by the Jewish Studies Workshop.

February 28, 2013. Berel Lang. “Primo Levi as Philosopher.” Berel Lang, formerly of Wesleyan University, is the author of Act and Idea in the Nazi Genocide  (1990), The Anatomy of Philosophical Style (1990), Holocaust Representation: Art within the Limits of History and Ethics (2000), Philosophical Witnessing: The Holocaust as Presence (2009), and other books.Co-sponsored by the Literature and Philosophy Workshop and the Center for Jewish Studies.

March 8, 2013. Jaqueline Vayntrub, PhD Candidate, Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, “The Idea of Mashal: Aesthetics and Biblical Poetry.”Sponsored by the Hebrew Bible Workshop.

March 21, 2013. Lev Luis Grinberg, Professor, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Ben Gurion University, “Were the Elections in 2013 the Big-Bang of Israeli Politics? Shaping and Reshaping the Political Arena after the J14 Occupy Movement.” Lev Grinberg is a political economist and sociologist, senior lecturer in the Dept. of Sociology and Anthropology, and the former director of the Humphrey Institute for Social Research (1998-2003), Ben Gurion University. His fields of specialization are the history of the Zionist Labor Movement, Israel’s political economy, and the sociology of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. His most recent book, Politics and Violence in Israel/Palestine: Democracy vs. Military Rule, appeared in 2009. Sponsored by the Center for Middle Eastern Studies and the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies.

April 10, 2013.  Daniel Sperling, S.J.D., Federmann School of Public Policy and Government, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, “Organ Transplantation and Organ Donation in Israel: Recent Ethical and Policy Challenges.” This lecture is part of the 31st Annual Interdisciplinary Faculty Seminar Series, sponsored by The MacLean Center and University of Chicago Medicine – The Transplant Center.

April 10, 2013. Guy Ben-Ner. Lecture and presentation. One of the world’s foremost video artists, Guy Ben-Ner gained international fame with a series of low-tech shorts, starring his family in absurdist settings carved out of their home and immediate environment. Most famous among them, Stealing Beauty (2007) was filmed entirely in Ikea stores, Ben-Ner’s clan taking up (illegal) residence in plain view of stunned staff and shoppers. His visit to Illinois coincides with a solo show at Chicago’s Aspect/Ratio Gallery. This event is sponsored by The Chicago Center for Jewish Studies, the Open Practice Committee, and the Department of Visual Arts.

April 15, 2013.  Keith Jeffery, Professor of British History, Queen’s University, Belfast, “Exodus and Operation Embarrass: British Covert Operations and Jewish Immigration into Palestine, 1947–48.” In writing his recent book, “MI6: The History of the Secret Intelligence Service, 1909-1949,” Keith Jeffery became the first historian allowed full access to the archive of the British Secret Intelligence Service or MI6. His talk will focus on the controversial attempts by MI6 to block Jewish immigration to Palestine following World War II. Lecture presented by the Nicholson Center for British Studies, co-sponsored by the Department of History and the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies.

April 22, 2013. Tova Ganzel, Bar-Ilan University,  “Ezekiel’s Vision in the Babylonian Context: Preliminary Thoughts.” Sponsored by the Hebrew Bible Workshop.

April 23, 2013. Shaul Magid, Jay and Jeanie Schottenstein Chair in Jewish Studies, Indiana University. Prof. Magid presented a chapter from his manuscript in progress, “Hasidim Incarnate: Hasidism and the ‘Christianization of Modern Judaism.” Sponsored by the Jewish Studies Workshop.

April 24, 2013. Sam Berrin Shonkoff, PhD student, Divinity School, “Unmediated Bodies: Buber’s Pursuit of the Unmittelbar and His Turn to Embodiment.” Presented by the Philosophy of Religions Workshop.

May 6, 2013.  Avi Faust, Bar-Ilan University. A lecture was given by Avi Faust, director of the Institute of Archaeology and associate professor at the Martin (Szusz) Department of Land of Israel Studies and Archaeology, Bar-Ilan University with a response by David Schloen, Associate Professor, Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, University of Chicago. Sponsored by the Hebrew Bible Workshop.

May 7, 2013. Davi Strauss Bernstein, PhD student will present. Sponsored by the Jewish Studies Workshop.

May 20, 2013. Joey Cross, PhD student, Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, “Psalm 45: Lineation Through Manuscript Analysis and Notes Toward an Interpretation.” Sponsored by the Hebrew Bible Workshop.

May 24, 2013. Francesca Consolaro, Visiting PhD student from Universita degli Studi di Verona, “Law in Rosenzweig’s Star of Redemption: The History of a Difference.” Sponosred by the Jewish Studies Workshop.

May 28, 2013. Tsafi Sebba, Visiting Scholar at Indiana University. Dr. Sebba presented his current work on “The emergence (and concealment) of the Jewish joke in Alter Druyanow’s Sefer ha-Bediha ve-ha-Hiddud (The Book of the Joke and the Witticism, 1922).” Sponsored by the Jewish Studies Workshop and the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies.

Lecture Series

Transcending Tradition – a lecture series presented in conjunction with the exhibition on Jewish mathematicians at Crerar Library. The opening of the exhibit on October 4, 2012, was accompanied by a lecture from Silvan Schweber, Professor of Physics and Koret Professor of the History of Ideas, Emeritus, Brandeis University, entitled, “The Bethes and German Jewish Culture.” The second lecture was given by Hanna Holborn Gray, President Emerita and Harry Pratt Judson Distinguished Service Professor Emerita in the Zar Room of Crerar Library on November 5, 2012, and was entitled, “European Emigre Scholars and the American Academy after 1933.” The third and final lecture on December 3 was given by Sander Gilman, Distinguished Professor of the Liberal Arts and Sciences and Professor of Psychiatry at Emory University, and was entitled, “Smart Jews and Science: The Science of ‘Smartiness’ and Jews.”

The Trouble with Prophets, Prophecy, & Prophetic Literature of the Hebrew Bible.

A series of four lectures exploring how the study of Israelite prophecy has developed in recent decades with respect to comparative aspects, gender theory, relationship to magic, and post-biblical legacy. Co-sponsored by the Divinity School, the Martin Marty Center for the Advanced Study of Religion, and the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies.
Wednesday, October 10, 2012,  4:30 pm,  Robert Wilson, Yale University, “Prophecy and Society in Ancient Israel: Thirty Years Later.” Thursday, November 15, 2012, Ronnie Goldstein, The Hebrew University Jerusalem, “Aspects of the Development of Prophetic Books.” Wednesday, January 16, 2013, Esther Hamori, Union Theological Seminary, “Prophecy and Gender in Ancient Israel.” Thursday, February 7, 3013, Alex Jassen, University of Minnesota, “The Legacy of Prophecy in Early Judaism.

Jews and Politics. Sponsored by the undergraduate Student Alliance for Jewish Enrichment (SAJE) with the support of Student Government and the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies. The initial lecture was given on Thursday, November, 15, 2012, by Dr. David Flatto, assistant professor of law, religion, and history at Penn State, entitled, Sovereignty & Law: Early Jewish Attitudes in Comparative Perspective.  The second lecture was presented on February 18, 2013, by Prof. Zvi Gitelman, professor of political science and Preston R. Tisch Professor of Judaic Studies at the University of Michigan and was entitled, “Was Communism a Jewish Conspiracy?”


Archive of Lectures