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Engaging the minds and hearts of the broader community

At the Center for Jewish Studies, we believe that dialogue and the exchange of ideas are essential to expanding the appreciation and understanding of Jewish history and culture. Through a variety of events—including seminars, lectures, and celebrations—we act as a hub for University and community discourse and learning.

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Recent News

  • Jewish Refugees in Shanghai Exhibit Opening in March

    ellen-wiss-family.jpgJewish Refugees in Shanghai (1933-1941) is a collaborative community effort to share information about the unique experiences of Jewish refugees during World War II.The cornerstone of this project is a historical exhibit curated by the Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum. The exhibit has been enhanced with additional stories from four "Shanghailanders" with deep Minnesota connections. The exhibit runs from March 19-May 7, 2015 at the Sabes JCC, 4330 S. Cedar Lake Road, Minneapolis, MN 55416. For more information, go to the Confucius Institute website: confucius.umn.edu

    (Continue Reading)02/23/15
  • "Can One Laugh at Everything?" Audio Available

    Our friends at the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies have downloaded audio of the recent Charlie Hebdo symposium "Can One Laugh at Everything? Satire and Free Speech After Charlie." The post also contains informative visuals provided by two of the speakers. The symposium continues to resonate on and off campus, and we encourage you to check out the CHGS site.

    (Continue Reading)02/16/15
  • "Strange Times to Be a Jew: The New American Jewish Literature" - Josh Lambert

    Josh Lambert.jpg

    A lecture by Josh Lambert, Assistant Professor of English at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst

    Monday, March 2, 2015 @ 7:30 P.M.
    Shir Tikvah Congregation
    1360 W. Minnehaha Pkwy.
    Minneapolis, MN 55419
    This event is free and open to the public

    The turn of the millennium saw a remarkable boom in the production of Jewish literature in the United States. A generation of young writers including Nathan Englander, Michael Chabon, Jonathan Safran Foer, Dara Horn, Gary Shteyngart, and Nicole Krauss quickly achieved a level of national celebrity and critical acclaim in a way that seemed to echo a similar development in the mid-20th century, when Saul Bellow, Philip Roth, Grace Paley, Isaac Bashevis Singer, and Cynthia Ozick collectively rose to national prominence. Why did this sort of fiction attract so much attention, once again, particularly at the dawn of the 21st century? What do these writers' works tell us about Jewish life in our time?

    Josh Lambert is the Academic Director of the Yiddish Book Center and Visiting Assistant Professor of English at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He is the author of American Jewish Fiction: A JPS Guide, and Unclean Lips: Obscenity, Jews, and American Culture, which won a Canadian Jewish Book Award in Jewish Thought and Culture. Lambert serves as contributing editor to Tablet, as well as contributing book reviews and essays to the Los Angeles Times, Haaretz, the Los Angeles Review of Books, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Globe & Mail, and the Forward.

    This series is made possible by a generous gift in memory of Julia K. & Harold Segall.

    Co-sponsored by the Department of English; Rimon: The Minnesota Jewish Arts Council, and Shir Tikvah Congregation.

    JoshLambert_LectureFlyer.pdf

    (Continue Reading)10/30/14
  • Welcome Ido Zelkovitz, 2014-15 Schusterman Visiting Professor

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    The University of Minnesota received a grant from the Schusterman Foundation to invite
    an Israeli scholar to spend the academic year 2014-2015 with us. Professor Ido Zelkovitz
    is a Research Fellow with the Ezri Center for Iran and Persian Gulf Studies at the
    University of Haifa, and is a lecturer in the Department of Middle Eastern History and the
    Department of Multidisciplinary Studies. Dr. Zelkovitz was a postdoctoral research fellow inThe Institute of Sociology at the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Germany. Dr. Zelkovtiz is also a Member of Mitvim - The Israeli Institute for Regional Foreign Policies: an independent think tank that envisions a fresh start for Israel among the nations. His research, academic courses, and public lectures reflect a focus on cross-disciplinary analysis of Palestinian history and politics and the Arab-Israeli Conflict, Israel's geopolitical situation in the Middle East and the role of Higher Education and students in building national identities in the Middle East. He is the author of two books and has been published in many academic journals such as Middle Eastern Studies, Israel Affairs, and Ha-Mizrah Ha-Hadash.

    While at the University of Minnesota, Prof. Zelkovitz will teach three courses, including a freshman seminar, "Wars, Memory, and Political Identity in Israel and the Middle East" in the Fall. He will also teach adult education courses at both the Minneapolis and St. Paul Jewish Community Centers.

    (Continue Reading)07/10/14
  • Steven Cohen's lecture now on Youtube

    On Monday, June 16, 2014, Professor Steven M. Cohen spoke to the community at Temple Israel, giving a talk entitled, "Reflections on the Most Important Study of American Jewry in the 21st Century: "Portrait of Jewish Americans" by the Pew Center for Religion and American Life." A video of that talk is now available to watch on the Center's Youtube channel.

    (Continue Reading)06/19/14

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