Gender, the Bible, and the Art of Translation

Gender, the Bible, and the Art of Translation

May 20, 2024

How should English translators of the Hebrew Bible approach questions relating to gender? When should gender-inclusive language (such as “God” or “person”) be used for references to God and human beings, and when is gendered terminology (such as “King” and “man”) called for historically and linguistically? What does it mean to faithfully render biblical Hebrew into contemporary English, and how can translators share their methodologies and choices with readers and communities? We explore these questions, focusing on the newest Bible translation released by The Jewish Publication Society, THE JPS TANAKH: Gender-Sensitive Edition.

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Praying for the Peace of Jerusalem

Praying for the Peace of Jerusalem

May 13, 2024 By Alan Cooper | Public Event video | Video Lecture | Yom Hazikaron-Yom Ha'atzma'ut

In Commemoration of Yom Hazikaron (Israel’s Memorial Day for Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terror)

With Dr. Alan Cooper, Elaine Ravich Professor of Jewish Studies, JTS

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Art as Witness: The Work and Remarkable Survival Story of Esther Lurie

Art as Witness: The Work and Remarkable Survival Story of Esther Lurie

May 6, 2024 By Shay Pilnik | Public Event video | Video Lecture | Yom Hashoah

The survival story of celebrated artist Esther Lurie (1913-1998), the only Israeli artist to win the prestigious Dizengoff Prize for Drawing twice in her career, was beyond remarkable. After she made aliyah and established herself as a prominent artist in young Tel Aviv, Lurie was caught up in the claws of the Hitlerite monster while visiting her sister. From that point on, she was driven by two motivations—to survive the Kovna Ghetto and several labor camps, and to bear witness to Nazi crimes through a series of brilliant, clandestine sketches and illustrations.

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From Symposium to Seder: How The Rabbinic Adoption of Roman Party Conventions Became Our Passover Seder

From Symposium to Seder: How The Rabbinic Adoption of Roman Party Conventions Became Our Passover Seder

Apr 15, 2024 By Robert Harris | Public Event video | Video Lecture | Pesah

In the years following the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 CE, Jewish observance of Passover underwent a seismic shift. In lieu of the now impossible sacrificial Temple ritual, the rabbis adopted the Roman symposium in order to create a new type of festival meal, one that was rooted in new rituals and intellectual discourse. Together we explore what led to the rabbinic decision to conduct the Seder in this way, rather than opting for a different way to commemorate Passover, such as instructing the Jewish people to perform the sacrifice in their homes. We also examine some of the questions and answers in the Haggadah which are central features of the Roman symposium and core to our Haggadah. 

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“Awaiting the Good Hour”: Hope in the Bible as a Resource for Religious Life

“Awaiting the Good Hour”: Hope in the Bible as a Resource for Religious Life

Apr 8, 2024 By Amy Kalmanofsky | Public Event video | Video Lecture

The capacity to hope is integral to religious life, yet contemporary realities can make it hard to feel and express hope. We explore what hope means in the context of the Bible, looking particularly at how the prophets Jeremiah and Isaiah use maternal imagery to convey hope, and consider how the Bible can be a valuable resource for cultivating a language of hope for us today. 

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Prayer through the Lens of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Prayer through the Lens of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Apr 1, 2024 By Mychal Springer | Public Event video | Video Lecture

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), with its focus on beliefs, thoughts, and feelings, is a powerful modality for helping people in distress. Drawing on the work of David H. Rosmarin’s Spirituality, Religion, and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy, we explore how CBT can inform and strengthen individuals’ and communities’ prayer lives. We discuss the connections between different types of prayers—including giving thanks, engaging in dialogue, contemplative prayer, and petitionary prayer—and evidence-based therapeutic approaches to wellbeing.  

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Seeing the Unseeable: Images of the Divine in Kabbalistic Texts

Seeing the Unseeable: Images of the Divine in Kabbalistic Texts

Mar 25, 2024

Download Sources With Dr. Eitan Fishbane, Professor of Jewish Thought, JTSand Dr. Marcus Mordecai Schwartz, Ripps Schnitzer Librarian for Special Collections; Assistant Professor, Talmud and Rabbinics, JTS This session will preview the JTS Library’s exhibit opening on March 26, co-curated by Dr. Schwartz, and a new JTS podcast on Jewish mysticism featuring Dr. Fishbane. ABOUT […]

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Mordecai the Jew and Esther the Greek: The Changing Politics of the Book of Esther in Antiquity and Our Times

Mordecai the Jew and Esther the Greek: The Changing Politics of the Book of Esther in Antiquity and Our Times

Mar 18, 2024 By Aaron Koller | Public Event video | Video Lecture | Purim

The Book of Esther is a diaspora book. None of the action takes place in the Land of Israel, and the Temple is never mentioned. One of the most famous—and significant—features of the Hebrew Book of Esther is the absence of any mention of God. But these features that make Diaspora Jews feel comfortable were profoundly disturbing to some of the book’s earliest readers—so disturbing that they actually changed it.

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