Traveling to Babylon—For Good

Traveling to Babylon—For Good

Aug 23, 2021 By David C. Kraemer | Public Event video

The first time Jews traveled to Babylon, it was part of a great exile. But when the rabbis returned to Babylon many centuries later, joining a now “native” Jewish community there, they found themselves very much at home. Some did indeed claim Babylon as home, while others traveled back and forth between Babylon and Palestine as rabbinic messengers to ensure that the teachings of each were available to the other. Two confident centers of Jewish life developed, not unlike modern New York and Jerusalem. In this session, Dr. David Kraemer explores the legacy of those rabbis and how their work continues to impact Jewish life today.

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A Journey Without End—<br>The Explusion From Spain and the Age of Perpetual Jewish Migration

A Journey Without End—
The Explusion From Spain and the Age of Perpetual Jewish Migration

Aug 16, 2021 By Jonathan Ray | Public Event video

In the summer of 1492, the Jews of Spain were expelled from their homeland by royal decree. The dispossessed embarked on a series of journeys in search of new homelands – a process that would last generations and transform Sephardic society and culture.

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Work-Life Balance in Ancient Times:   <br>Why the Rabbis Left Their Homes  to Study Torah

Work-Life Balance in Ancient Times:
Why the Rabbis Left Their Homes to Study Torah

Aug 9, 2021 By Rachel Rosenthal | Public Event video

We often think of questions about how to balance work and family as modern ones. However, a series of stories in Ketubot show that people have been struggling with these issues for hundreds of years. In these stories, the rabbis leave home to learn Torah, and often return to domestic chaos. Dr. Rachel Rosenthal explores these stories to better understand how the rabbis understood their obligations to Torah, to themselves, and to their families.  

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The Early Modern Travel Pass:  <br>Controlling the Plague and Jewish Mobility  in 16th Century Tuscany

The Early Modern Travel Pass:
Controlling the Plague and Jewish Mobility in 16th Century Tuscany

Aug 2, 2021 By Stefanie B. Siegmund | Public Event video

In the wake of the Black Death, governments in the Italian states began to enlarge their departments of health and sanitation in an effort to control the plague. Over time they experimented by banning travel to and from suspect regions and quarantining merchants’ goods. Italian Jews, heavily invested in local and regional commerce, were among the merchants affected, attracting the attention of the authorities.

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The Spectacular Story Of S. Ansky’s <br><i>The Dybbuk</i> and How it Transformed American Jewish Theatre

The Spectacular Story Of S. Ansky’s
The Dybbuk and How it Transformed American Jewish Theatre

Jul 26, 2021 By Edna Nahshon | Public Event video

Since its premiere in 1920 The Dybbuk has been revived countless times in both Jewish and non-Jewish languages and inspired a substantial corpus of works in various media: it was famously filmed in Yiddish 1936 in Warsaw, and to this day has fired the imagination of artists and writers around the globe. Join Dr. Edna Nahshon to discuss this unique play and its various interpretations, focusing on its two foundational productions and the 1936 Polish Yiddish film. 

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Finding Hijar: A Scholar’s Quest to Uncover the History of Her Jewish Community Through the Journey of Its Books

Finding Hijar: A Scholar’s Quest to Uncover the History of Her Jewish Community Through the Journey of Its Books

Jul 19, 2021 By Marjorie Lehman | Public Event video

With Dr. Marjorie Lehman and Dr. Lucia Conte Aguilar of Universitat Pompeu Fabra

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Flight, Return, and Emigration: <br>The Wanderings of a Yiddish Writer During and After the Holocaust

Flight, Return, and Emigration:
The Wanderings of a Yiddish Writer During and After the Holocaust

Jul 12, 2021 By David Fishman | Public Event video

The Yiddish poet Chaim Grade fled his native city of Vilna,  known to Jews as “the Jerusalem of Lithuania”, in late June 1941, as the Germans invaded the city. He spent the next four years as a refugee in the Soviet Union, homeless and malnourished. When Grade returned to Vilna in 1945, he  found the city in ruins – and learned from survivors of the Vilna ghetto that his wife, mother, friends and colleagues had been murdered by the Nazis. We will follow his journey of exile and redemption through selections from his works. 

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Judah Halevi: Poet and Pilgrim

Judah Halevi: Poet and Pilgrim

Jun 28, 2021 By Raymond Scheindlin | Public Event video

In the summer of 1141, Judah Halevi, a distinguished doctor, poet, and religious thinker sailed from his homeland, Spain, for the Holy Land, leaving behind his family, his medical practice, and his position as a distinguished leader of the Jewish community. Although little is known of his life before the pilgrimage, we can trace his journey in detail thanks to letters preserved in the Cairo Geniza. More importantly, we can follow Halevi’s inner religious journey through the stirring poems that he composed in anticipation of and during the voyage. In this session with Dr. Raymond Scheindlin, we will touch on both the external and internal journeys by drawing on the letters and the poems, all in translations by Dr. Scheindlin. 

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