The extraordinary opportunity to meet and study with some of the leading scholars in the Conservative Movement, including Arnold M. Eisen, Chancellor of The Jewish Theological Seminary, will take place during Shabbat and Slichot services on Friday and Saturday, September 7–8. This special weekend of programming is being sponsored by JTS and the Conservative synagogues of Metropolitan Dallas, and is part of festivities celebrating the re-dedication of Congregation Shearith Israel.
Professor Eisen will deliver the keynote address at the community–wide Slichot program at Congregation Shearith Israel, 9401 Douglas Avenue, on Saturday, September 8, beginning at 8:30 pm. He will also serve as scholar-in-residence over Shabbat.
|Dr. Eliezer Diamond|
Joining Professor Eisen at the community-wide Slichot program will be JTS scholars Eliezer Diamond and Eitan Fishbane, who will serve as scholars-in-residence over Shabbat at Congregation Anshai Torah in Plano and Congregation Beth Torah in Richardson, respectively.
Professor Eisen is the seventh chancellor of JTS. One of the world's foremost experts on American Judaism, Chancellor Eisen has worked closely for the past twenty years with synagogue and federation leadership around the country to analyze and address the issues of Jewish identity, the revitalization of Jewish tradition, and the redefinition of the American Jewish community.
|Dr. Eitan Fishbane|
A product of the Conservative Movement, Chancellor Eisen has regularly served as a faculty member of the Wexner Heritage Program, the Wexner Fellowship, and the Nahum Goldmann Fellowship of the Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture. He has served, and is now serving again, as a member of the Board of Governors of the Jewish Agency and has long been known as a passionate advocate of strengthening the connection between American Jews and Israel.
Chancellor Eisen's publications include a personal essay, Taking Hold of Torah: Jewish Commitment and Community in America (1997); a historical work entitled Rethinking Modern Judaism: Ritual, Commandment, Community (1998); and The Jew Within: Self, Family and Community in America (2000), co-authored with sociologist Steven M. Cohen. He is currently at work on a book that probes new possibilities for the meaning of Zionism.
Chancellor Eisen received a PhD in the History of Jewish Thought from Hebrew University; a BPhil in the Sociology of Religion at Oxford University; and a BA in Religious Thought from the University of Pennsylvania. Before assuming his role as chancellor, he was the Koshland Professor of Jewish Culture and Religion at Stanford University. He previously served as senior lecturer in the Department of Jewish Philosophy at Tel Aviv University, and assistant professor in the Department of Religion at Columbia University.
Rabbi Judah Nadich Associate Professor of Talmud and Rabbinics at JTS, Dr. Diamond teaches courses in rabbinic literature in addition to introductory, intermediate, and advanced Talmud study.
Dr. Diamond is the author of many popular and scholarly articles, including a chapter on the rabbinic period in The Schocken Guide to Jewish Books and articles in The Reader's Guide to Judaism. In 2002 he published a book titled Holy Men and Hunger Artists: Fasting and Asceticism in Rabbinic Culture, published in 2003 by Oxford University Press. Dr. Diamond is currently editing a commentary on Yerushalmi Pesahim written by the late Professor Louis Ginzberg. Dr. Diamond was ordained at the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary of Yeshiva University and received his doctorate in Talmud from JTS.
Dr. Fishbane is assistant professor in the Department of Jewish Philosophy at JTS. Prior to his appointment, he served on the faculties of Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion in Los Angeles and Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota.
Dr. Fishbane's research focuses on the history and literature of Jewish mysticism, with a primary specialization in medieval Kabbalah and an active interest in later currents—particularly Hasidic spirituality. Dr. Fishbane's scholarship has been published in several prestigious academic journals including: Journal of Jewish Thought and Philosophy, Jewish Quarterly Review, Journal of the American Academy of Religion, Journal of Religion, and Healing and the Jewish Imagination.
Presently, Dr. Fishbane is completing a book titled As Light Before Dawn: The Inner World of a Medieval Kabbalist, which focuses on the Kabbalistic writings and thought of fourteenth–century mystic Isaac ben Samuel of Akko. A second book underway, to be called Constructions of the Self in Jewish Mystical Literature, explores the manner in which medieval and early modern Kabbalists envisioned the formation and attainment of the ideal life and how they conceptualized the core dimensions of religious identity and personhood. Dr. Fishbane holds a bachelor of arts, summa cum laude, and a doctorate from Brandeis University.
Further information about the community collaboration is available by contacting Rabbi Marc Wolf, JTS Senior Director of Community Development, at (212) 678-8933.
Editors/Reporters: For further information or to schedule interviews with the guest rabbis, please contact Sherry S. Kirschenbaum in the Department of Communications at (212) 678–8953.
Founded in 1886 as a rabbinical school, The Jewish Theological Seminary today is the academic and spiritual center of Conservative Judaism worldwide, encompassing a world-class library and five schools. JTS trains tomorrow's religious, educational, academic, and lay leaders for the Jewish community and beyond.