Arnold M. Eisen, Chancellor–elect of The Jewish Theological Seminary, will discuss his vision for JTS and the Conservative Movement in his first public address in the Chicago area at the Dina and Eli Field Family Endowed Lecture. The event will take place at 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 8 at North Suburban Synagogue Beth El, 1175 Sheridan Road in Highland Park.
The program is the latest stop in Professor Eisen's year–long "listening tour," during which he has engaged Conservative Jews across the country in conversation in order to better understand their concerns and hopes for the future of the movement.
Chancellor–elect Eisen's engaging and enthusiastic style, deep intellect, and passion usher in fresh energy and vitality to JTS, the academic and spiritual center of Conservative Jews worldwide. Since 1986, Professor Eisen has been a Professor of Jewish Culture and Religion at Stanford University. One of the world's foremost experts on American Judaism, he has worked for over 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.
A product of the Conservative Movement, he has long been known as an avid advocate for strengthening the connection between American Jews and Israel. Professor Eisen's book, Taking Hold of Torah: Jewish Commitment and Community in America (1997), addresses the renewal of Jewish community and commitment in America. He is now working on a book probing new possibilities for the meaning of Zionism.
Professor 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. 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.
The lecture is being held in conjunction with the Dina and Eli Field Family Endowed Chair in Jewish History, currently held by Dr. Benjamin R. Gampel, an expert in medieval and early modern Jewish history who teaches at JTS. Admission is free; reservations are required. For further information or to RSVP, please call (312) 606–9086.
Editors/Reporters: For further information or to schedule an interview with Prof. Eisen, please contact Sherry Kirschenbaum in the Department of Communications at (212) 678–8953 or email.
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.
Visit the JTS website at www.jtsa.edu.