Yael Feldman

Yael S. Feldman

Professor of Hebrew and Judaic Studies; Abraham I. Katsh Professor of Hebrew Culture and Education

Hebrew College, Brookline, MA 1976; Columbia University, PhD 1981

Office: 53 Washington Square South, Room 205

Phone: (212)998-8987

Research Interests

Hebrew and Comparative Literature and History of Ideas, Bible to Modern; literary theory; gender and cultural studies; psychoanalytic criticism; secularism and nationalism

External Affiliations

American Comparative Literature Association; International Comparative Literature Association; National Association of Professors of Hebrew, Board Member, 1995-present; Modern Language Association, organizer and Chair, 1992-1996; Prooftexts, Board Member, 1985-present; Association for Israel Studies, Board Member, Program Committee, 1994-present; Association for Jewish Studies, Board Member, Program Committee, 1983-1986, 1989-1992

Select Publications


Glory and Agony: Isaac's Sacrifice and National Narrative. Standford University Press, 2010.
    * National Jewish Book Award Finalist (Nahum M. Sarna Memorial Award, Scholarship)

No Room of Their Own: Gender and Nation in Israeli Women's Fiction. Gender and Society Series, Columbia U.P., 1999
    * National Jewish Book Award Finalist (Barbara Dobkin Award for Women's Studies)
    * Reviewed in 23 journals [in English, Hebrew, French, Swedish, and Italian]

Lelo Heder Mishelahen: Migdar uLeumiut biYetziratan shel Sofrot Israeliot. Hakkibutz Hameuchad, 2002. (HEB)
    * Winner of the Friedman Memorial Prize for Hebrew Literature, 2003

(Co-editor)Teaching the Hebrew Bible as Literature, Modern Language Association Publications. 1989.

Modernism and Cultural Transfer: Gabriel Preil and the Tradition of Jewish Literary Bilingualism. Cincinnati, OH: Hebrew Union College Press. 1986.


Not as Sheep Led to Slaughter’?: On Trauma, Selective Memory, and the Making of Historical Consciousness,” Jewish Social Studies 19:3 (Summer 2013): 139-169.

Isaac and Ishmael? The Sibling Challenge to Israel’s Oedipalized Binding,” Religion and Literature 45:2 (Summer 2013): 109-129

“Scripture and Modern Israeli Literature,” Jewish Concepts of Scripture, ed. Benjamin Sommer, NYU Press, 2012, 280-299.

“Mock Abrahams, Silent Gods, Nascent States: The Sacrifice of Isaac and Familicide in Early America,” Words, Ideas, World: Biblical Essays in Honour of Yairah Amit, Athalya Brenner and Frank Polak, eds. (Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2012): 96-104.

“Maertyrer oder Krieger? Die Wiedererfindung 'Isaaks' als Kriegsheld im jüdischen Palästina,” in Grenzgänger der Religionskulturen. Kulturwissenschaftliche Beiträge zu Gegenwart und Geschichte der Märtyrer, Silvia Horsch and Martin Treml (Eds.), Fink Verlag: Muenchen,  2011, 341-356 [trans. Claudia Richter].

“Israeli Gnosticism: Amos Oz’s Gospel according to Jephthah,” European Journal of Jewish Studies 2.2 (2009): 237-246.

“From ‘Sanctification of the Name’ to ‘Bliss of Aqedah’: The Invention of ‘Isaac’ as a Heroic Figure in Zionist Discourse,” ISRAEL 12 (Fall 2007): 107-151 [Hebrew]   

On the Cusp of Christianity: Virgin Sacrifice in Pseudo-Philo and Amos Oz.” JQR, 97: 3 (Summer 2007): 379-415.

From Essentialism to Constructivism? The Gender of Peace and War in Gilman, Woolf, Freud.” Partial Answers: A Journal of Literature and History of Ideas, January 2004, pp. 113-145.

"Between Genesis and Sophocles: Biblical Psychopolitics in A. B. Yehoshua's Mr. Mani." History and Literature: New Readings of Jewish Texts, William Cutter and David Jacobson, eds. (Brown UP, 2002): 451-464.

"Postcolonial Memory, Postmodern Intertextuality: Anton Shammas’s ARABESQUES Revisited." Publication of Modern Language Association. 114:3. 373-389. May 1999.

"Isaac or Oedipus? Jewish Tradition and the Israeli Akedah." Biblical Studies/ Cultural Studies: The Third Sheffield Colloquium, eds. Cheryl Exum and Stephen Moore (Sheffield Academic Press, 1998): 159-189.

"'And Rebecca Loved Jacob', But Freud Did Not." Freud and Forbidden Knowledge, eds. Peter Rudnytsky and Ellen Spitz (NYU Press, 1994): 7-25.

"Whose Story Is It, Anyway? Psychology and Ideology in the Representation of the Shoah in Israeli Literature," Probing the Limits of Representation, ed. Saul Friedlander (Harvard UP, 1992): 223-239, 380-384.


Visiting Fellow, Wolfson College at Cambridge University; Yad Vashem Fellowship (2011); Lady Davis Fellowship at Hebrew University of Jerusalem (2010); Selma Ruben Fellow, Katz Center for Advance Judaic Studies, University of Pennsylvania (2009); Littauer Foundation Grant (1997, 2001); NYU Research Challenge Award (1997-8, 2002); The Friedman Award for Hebrew Literature Scholarship (2003); Coolidge Fellowship for Crosscurrent Summer Research Colloquium (2006); Rabbi Sally Priesand Visiting Professor of Jewish Women’s Studies at HUC-JIR, Cincinnati; The Koerner Fellowship, Oxford Center for Hebrew Culture (1996); National Endowment for Humanities Summer Fellowship (1989); Fulbright-Hays Fellowship for Research Abroad (1984-1985); American Comparative Literature Association Travel Grant (1983).