Spring 2017 Graduate Course List

Akkadian II (HBRJD-GA.1102-001) [3 points]
Instructor: Prof. Ron Wallenfels
Day & Time: Mondays, 11:00am - 1:45pm
Description:  Introduction to cuneiform script and to the Akkadian language, with emphasis on grammatical structure.

Sumerian II (ISAW-GA.3018-003) [4 points]

Instructor: Prof. Gina Konstantopoulos

Day & Time: Mondays, 2:00pm - 4:45pm

Description: The second semester of Sumerian is a follow-up to Sumerian I, when grammar and basic texts were covered. Sumerian II will be devoted to reading, with particular focus on the classic literature of the Old Babylonian period, including the Lamentation over Sumer and Ur.

Aramaic II (HBRJD-GA.1118-001) [3 points]
Instructor: Prof. Lawrence Schiffman
Day & Time: Tuesdays, 11:00am - 1:45pm
Description:  Introduction to Aramaic documents found at Qumran and contemporary sites. This represents the intermediate phase of Aramaic and Bar Kokhba texts.

Modern Hebrew for Biblicists (HBRJD-GA 1180) [2 points]
Instructor: Prof. Rosalie Kamelhar
Day & Time: TBA
Description: The course provides students who have studied only Biblical Hebrew to quickly gain the ability to read modern Hebrew academic literature. Building upon students’ assumed prior knowledge of the range of grammatical structures of Biblical Hebrew, the course offers examples of how those structures are applied in modern Israeli academic writing. Emphasis is on vocabulary enlargement and reading comprehension.

Academic Yiddish II (HBRJD-GA.1217-001) [3 points]
Instructor: Prof. Gennady Estraikh
Day & Time: TBD
Description: Intensive study of the language of Yiddish academic discourse. Students study primary source material in their area of specialization and secondary critical material.

Yiddishism in the 20th Century (HBRJD-GA.1320-001) [3 points]
Instructor: Prof. Gennady Estraikh
Day & Time: Wednesdays, 2:00pm - 4:45pm
Description: Examination of the origin and development of Yiddishism as an international cultural movement and an ingredient of Jewish subcurrents in socialism, anarchism, folkism, and communism.

History of Jewish Education (HBRJD-GA 1518) [3 points]
Instructor: Prof. Robert Chazan
Day & Time: Tuesdays, 12:00pm – 2:45pm
Description: This course will look at means, goals, and objectives of Jewish education through the 20th Century. Counts toward integrative requirement.

Jerusalem: The Contested Inheritance (HBRJD-GA 1812) [4 points]
Instructor: Prof. Lior Lehrs
Day & Time: Thursdays, 5:00pm – 7:45pm
Description: Jerusalem is a world center of spirituality and faith for the three monotheistic religions, and has significant importance in the national and religious ethos and narratives of Israelis and Palestinians. It is both a political symbol and the focus of fervid imaginings for millions of people around the world. At the same time, it is a home to 850,000 Jews and Arabs in an ethnically segregated and divided- but prosperous- bi-national city. This course will trace different stages in the history of modern Jerusalem, from the late-Ottoman and British eras, to post-1948 Israeli and Jordanian partition, and finally exclusive Israeli control since the 1967 war. We will address the central aspects of Jerusalem's history and complexities: the national and political struggle between Israelis and Palestinians over Jerusalem; the religious perspective and the holy sites; the social context of the relations between the different religious communities (Jewish, Muslim and Christian) and the internal divisions in these communities; and Jerusalem in the diplomatic sphere and in peace negotiations. The course will also analyze the different actors involved in Jerusalem and the demographic, economic, and urban trends in the city, highlighting the tensions between conflict and coexistence, competition and tolerance, integration and segregation.

Topics in Israeli Studies: Major Israeli Biography (HBRJD-G 1948) [4 points]
Instructor: Prof. Itamar Rabinovich
Day & Time: Tuesdays, 2:00pm – 4:45pm [Special Session 2/28/17 - 4/11/17]
Description: By now a significant number of biographies of major Israeli personalities have been written and published in English--David Ben Gurion, Moshe Dayan, Yitzhak Rabin, Ariel a Sharon and Golda Meir, to name a few. This course will use the available literature both as a way to illuminate important aspects of Israel's history and in order to deal with the art of biography writing as a branch of history.

Northwest Semitic Inscriptions (HBRJD-GA 2170) [3 points]
Instructor: Prof. Daniel Fleming
Day & Time: Wednesdays, 11:00am – 1:45pm
Description: This course will begin with a review of the language issues that confront us: the Semitic languages as a set, the Northwest Semitic group more specifically, and the sound changes that bring us to the Masoretic pronunciation of Biblical Hebrew that is one of our primary points of reference. From there, after a brief consideration of orthography and script, the course will begin reading texts.

Talmudic Geonic Literature (HBRJD-GA 2340) [3 points]
Instructor: Prof. Jeffrey Rubenstein
Day & Time: Thursdays, 12:30pm – 3:15pm
Description: Introduction to Geonic legal literature, especially the main post-talmudic halakhic codes. Topics include: the stabilization of the Talmudic text,  methods of Geonic adjudication, anti-Karaite polemics, and the struggle between Babylonian and Palestinian Geonim. Attention will also be given to the major works of geonic historiography, the Epistle of Rav Sherira Gaon and the Seder Tannaim ve-Amoraim.

Critical Theory and Ancient Judaism (HBRJD-GA 2457) [4 points]
Instructor: Prof. Alex Jassen
Day & Time: Thursdays, 8:00am – 10:45am
Description: This course introduces students to the ways that scholars of ancient Judaism employ critical theory. Students engage with the work of notable theorists and thereby gain knowledge in postmodern approaches and their application in Biblical and Jewish Studies. Particular attention is paid to literary studies, gender studies, and postcolonialism. The course examines how these theoretical approaches compare in their methods and results with historical-philological approaches to ancient texts and material culture.

Jewish Migrations in the Modern Era (HBRJD-GA 3176)
[4 points]
Instructor: Prof. Hasia Diner
Day & Time: Thursdays, 2:00pm – 4:45pm
Description: This graduate seminar explores migration as a shaping force in modern Jewish history. Since the end of the fifteenth century Jews have been involved in an ongoing process of shifting their places of residence. They have moved from rural to urban and at times from urban to rural areas, from east to west, and from west to east. Jews have migrated extensively within the borders single nation states and crossed many national and continental boundaries. They have relocated themselves in the modern period from Europe and the Moslem lands to places themselves throughout the Atlantic and Mediterranean worlds, occasionally moving in alongside older Jewish communities, more often planting Jewish outposts where none had existed before. Carrying out these migrations required weighting and negotiation a variety of factors involving the countries of departure and destination, the mechanisms by which migration could be accomplished, state policies of emigration and immigration, and the demands of the Jews’ own particular cultural repertoire.


Topics in the Bible: Genesis 12-50 and Theories of Pentateuchal Formation (HBRJD-GA 3311) [3 points]
Instructor: Prof. David Carr
Day & Time: Tuesdays, 8:00am – 10:45am
Description: This course is designed to provide advanced students in Bible training in study of the formation of ancient texts, specific background on Pentateuchal theory, and practice in basic disciplines of academic writing. The course will focus on a combination of detailed review of documented examples of transmission history and review of key examples of study of the transmission history of Biblical texts -- particularly Genesis, with a focus on various models for understanding the oral and written formation of ancestral traditions in Genesis 12-50.

Bible in Jewish Culture (HBRJD-GA 3324) [3 points]
Instructor: Prof. Micah Gottlieb
Day & Time: Thursdays, 2:00pm – 4:45pm
Description: Exploration of the diverse roles played by the Hebrew Bible in constructions of Jewish identity and in cultural productions by Jews through the centuries. Counts toward integrative requirement.

Topics in Holocaust Studies: Recent Historical Writing on the Holocaust (HBRJD-GA 3530) [3 points]
Instructor: Prof. David Engel
Day & Time: Wednesdays, 5:00pm – 7:45pm
Description: In-depth study of a specific problem related to the history of the Jews under Nazi impact, with emphasis on training in research methods. Topics may include examination of the history of a specific Jewish community under Nazi rule, the evolution of Nazi Jewish policy, the Jewish councils, armed resistance, relations between Jews and non-Jews under Nazi occupation, the Allied governments and the Holocaust, and free-world Jewry and the Holocaust.