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Faculty

Visiting Scholars 2015-2016

Yair Zakovitch
Prof. Yair Zakovitch’ primary  research interests are the Bible as literature, biblical thought and ancient interpretation of the Bible. He has served as Head of the Institute of Jewish Studies at the Hebrew University, and also as its Dean of Humanities.

Avigdor Shinan
Prof. Avigdor Shinan is Professor of Hebrew Literature. His fields of research are the Midrashic and Aggadic Literature, the Aramaic Ttranslations of the Bible. and the Jewish Prayer book. His list of publication contains more than 120 scholarly articles and 8 books.

Meir Bar-Asher
Prof. Meir Bar-Asher teaches at the department of Arabic Language and Literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem where he has been the director of the Institute of Asian and African Studies. Prof. Bar-Asher is an expert on Quranic Studies and Shi’i Islam.

Eran Viezel
Dr. Eran Viezel graduated at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, at the Bible department. He teaches at the department of Bible, Archaeology and Ancient Near Eastern Studies at Ben Gurion University of the Negev (Beer Sheba). His main field of reserach is Jewish exegesis to the Bible. His list of publication contains the book; The Commentary on Chronicles Attributed to Rashi (Jerusalem: The Hebrew University Magnes Press, 2010) and more than 30 scholarly articles.

Roni Weinstein
Dr. Roni Weinstein graduated at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem at the department of Jewish History. His research focuses on the history of Jews in Italy during the Middle Ages, Renaissance and Early Modern Period.

Jesper Svartvik
Prof. Jesper Svartvik is Krister Stendahl Professor of Theology of Religions at Lund University and at the Swedish Theological Institute in Jerusalem. He is also a member of the Peer Review Board of Studies in Christian-Jewish Relations.

Howard Deitcher
Howard Deitcher is a faculty member at the Melton Centre for Jewish Education at the Hebrew University and its former director. In addition, he is the director of the Florence Melton Institute for Adult Jewish Learning at Hebrew University.

Rachel Furst
Rachel Furst received her Ph.D. in Jewish History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem with her dissertation “Claiming Credibility: The Makings and Meanings of Gender in the Legal Literature of Medieval Ashkenaz”. Rachel Fürst is a lecturer at Matan, Jerusalem and has taught at various institutions in Israel and abroad. She is a visiting doctoral fellow at the Tikvah Center for Law and Jewish Civilization at NYU Law School, New York.

Assaf Tamari
Dr. Assaf Tamari received his Ph.D. from the department for Jewish thought in Ben-Burion University. Hin main field of expertise is sixteenth-century Lurianic Kabbalah, and his research is focused on the Lurianic Body Discourse.

Esti Eisenmann
Dr. Esti Eisenmann graduated at the Hebrew University at the Dept of Jewish Thought. Her research focuses on Medieaval Jewish Thought, with a particular emphasis on the thought of R. Moshe Ben Yehuda, the anonymous author of a unique encyklopedia of science and Judaism compiled in the 14th Century.

Motti Zalkin
Prof. Motti Zalkin is an associate professor of economic history of the Jews in Eastern Europe, mainly in Lithuania, and the history of Jewish modern history at Ben-Gurion University. His special fields of interest are the social education in Eastern Europe.

Boaz Huss
Prof. Boaz Huss teaches Kabbalah at the Goren-Goldstein Department of Jewish Thought at Ben-Gurion University. He is an expert of various areas of Kabbalah, including the Zohar and Contemporary Kabbalah.

Yael Lin
Dr. Yael Lin teaches at both Ben-Gurion University and Achva Academic College, and is the pedagogical Consultant for the Department of Learning Technologies at Ben-Gurion University. She is the author of the Intersubjectivity of Time: Levinas and Infinite Responsibility (Duquesne University Press, 2013), Time and Human Existence: Aristotle, Bergson, Heidegger, Levinas (Resling Publishing, forthcoming), and the editor of Levinas Faces Biblical Figures (Lexington Books, 2014).

Anat Feinberg
Prof. Anat Feinberg received her Ph.D. in English literature from London University and has been a lecturer in Literature and Theatre studies at Ben Gurion University and Tel Aviv University. She is now Professor in Hebrew and Jewish literature at the Hochschule für Jüdische Studien, Heidelberg.

Visiting Scholars 2014-2015

Eran Viezel
Dr. Eran Viezel graduated at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, at the Bible department. He teaches at the department of Bible, Archaeology and Ancient Near Eastern Studies at Ben Gurion University of the Negev (Beer Sheba). His main field of research is Jewish exegesis to the Bible. His list of publication contains the book, The Commentary on Chronicles Attributed to Rashi (Jerusalem: The Hebrew University Magnes Press, 2010), and more than 30 scholarly articles.

Tamar Kadari
Dr. Tamar Kadari was born in Jerusalem in 1968. She received her PhD in Midrashic literature from Hebrew University in 2005. In 2001 Tamar was a fellow at the Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at Penn University. In 2009 she received a grant from the Israeli Science Foundation (ISF) to head  a research  group preparing a critical edition of  Song of Songs Rabbah. Tamar teaches at the Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies, where she serves as the head of the Midrash and Aggadah program, and at Bar Ilan University. Her articles have been published in leading scholarly journals in Israel and abroad. Tamar is a sculpture artist specializing in the human body. Her work has been exhibited in galleries in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

Ephraim Shoham-Steiner
Dr. Ephraim Shoham-Steiner graduated Hebrew University in Jerusalem (2002). He teaches Medieval Jewish History at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. Specializing in Medieval Jewish History his research focuses on the social and intellectual aspects of Jewish history with a special interest in social information that can be extracted from medieval rabbinic source material. His recent book, “Involuntary Marginal’s – Lepers Madman and the Physically Impaired in Medieval European Jewish Communities” (Zalman Shazar Center & Israeli Historical Society – Jerusalem 2008-Hebrew) explores the lives of individuals in medieval European Jewish communities that due to mental or physical impairments found themselves on the margins of society. The book discusses the social attitudes towards these men and woman as well as the social significance of attitudes and their meaning within these communities. Other areas of interest are the social significance of religious customs and Jewish Christian relations in medieval Europe.

Israel Yuval
Israel Yuval is a professor of Jewish History at the Hebrew University. He is the Director of the Mandel School for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and has served as Academic Head of the Scholion Interdisciplinary Research Institute in Jewish Studies.

Rachel Furst
Rachel Furst is a Ph.D. candidate in Jewish History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem where she is working on a dissertation entitled, “Claiming Credibility: The Makings and Meanings of Gender in the Legal Literature of Medieval Ashkenaz.” She received a B.A. in Medieval Studies from Barnard College and an M.A. in Jewish History from the Hebrew University. Rachel is a lecturer at Matan, Jerusalem and has taught at various institutions in Israel and abroad. She is a visiting doctoral fellow at the Tikvah Center for Law and Jewish Civilization at NYU Law School, New York.

Nadav S. Berman
Nadav Berman Shifman is a PhD student in the Department for Jewish Thought at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is working on a dissertation entitled “Pragmatism and American Jewish Thought in the Twentieth Century: New Perspectives on the Writings of Hayyim Hirschensohn, Mordecai Kaplan and Eliezer Berkovits” (adv. Dr. Avinoam Rosenak). Nadav’s MA thesis was written in the field of the philosophy of Halakha (adv. Prof. Moshe Halbertal); he is also a fellow at the Hartman Institute’s Beit-Midrash for Research Students.

Assaf Tamari
Assaf Tamari is a doctoral student at the department for Jewish thought in Ben-Gurion University in the Negev. His main field of expertise is sixteenth-century Lurianic Kabbalah, and his research is focused on the Lurianic Body Discourse. His academic interests vary, and include Kabbalistic anthropological models, theories of subjectivity, individuation and agency, rhetorics, myth making, and political and critical theory.

Joseph Witztum
Dr. Joseph Witztum teaches in the Department of Arabic Language and Literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is especially interested in the comparative study of the Quran, Syriac retellings of biblical narratives, and rabbinic texts.

Motti Zalkin
Professor Motti Zalkin was born in Jerusalem and received his university training at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is an associate professor of modern Jewish history at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel. His special fields of interest are the social and economic history of the Jews in Eastern Europe, mainly in Lithuania, and the history of Jewish education in Eastern Europe. Among his publications are A New Dawn: The Jewish Enlightenment in the Russian Empire – Social Aspects (2000); From the Hidden Treasures of Jewish Vilna: Historical Documents From the Annals of Lithuanian Jewry (2001); The City of Vilna (Ed.)(2002); From Heder to School: Modernization Processes in Nineteenth Century East European Jewish Education (2008).

Rani Jaeger
Rani Jaeger is a PhD Candidate at the Bar Ilan University at the department of Hermeneutics and Cultural Studies. For the past 10 years, Rani has been on the faculty of the Shalom Hartman Institute, and is currently the Director of the Shalom Hartman Institute School for Teacher Education. He teaches as well at the Tel-Aviv University. Rani is one of the founders of Beit Tefilah Israel (Israeli House of Prayer), a “secular” synagogue that seeks to create a new spiritual community in the heart of Tel-Aviv. He has also been Paideia’s scholar in residence in 2009-2010.

Yael Lin
Dr. Yael Lin teaches at both Ben-Gurion University and Achva Academic College, and is the pedagogical consultant for the Department of Learning Technologies at Ben-Gurion University. She is the author of The Intersubjectivity of Time: Levinas and Infinite Responsibility (Duquesne University Press, 2013), Time and Human Existence: Aristotle, Bergson, Heidegger, Levinas (Resling Publishing, forthcoming), and the editor of Levinas Faces Biblical Figures (Lexington Books, 2014).

Chaya Gilboa
Chaya Gilboa works at the Hartman Institute in Jerusalem as an educator in Jewish studies. She holds a BA in Jewish Philosophy and History from Ben Gurion University and an MA in Public Policy from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She teaches Jewish texts and Jewish philosophy especially with a focus on identity and pluralism. She has previously worked among other places for the Jewish Agency for Israel, Alma College, the Hebrew University, the Masorti Youth Movement and Hillel student organization. She is also a tour guide and a social activist in religious policy issues. She has also been Paideia’s scholar in residence in 2013-2014.

Anat Feinberg
Professor Feinberg was born in Tel Aviv and studied at Tel Aviv University as well as at the University of London (Ph.D.). She teaches Hebrew and Jewish Literature at the Hochschule für Jüdische Studien in Heidelberg and is editor in charge of Modern Hebrew Literature, Encyclopaedia Judaica (2007), Kindlers Literaturlexikon (2009). Her fields of research are Modern Hebrew Literature, Jews and German Theatre, German-Jewish Literature. She has published numerous books and articles as well as three novels.

Reuven Kiperwasser, Scholar-in-residence 2012-2013

Reuven Kiperwasser holds a PhD from the Talmud Department at Bar Ilan University.  He has taught Rabbinics extensively at the Hebrew University, Bar Ilan University, Open University of Israel and the Moscow State University.

Visiting Scholars 2012-2013

Prof. Yair Zakovitch has served as Head of the Institute of Jewish Studies at the Hebrew University, and also as its Dean of Humanities. His primary research interests are the Bible as literature, biblical thought and ancient interpretation of the Bible.

Prof. Avigdor Shinan is Professor of Hebrew Literature. His fields of research are the Midrashic and Aggadic literature, the Aramaic Translations of the Bible and the Jewish Prayer book. His list of publication contains more than 120 scholarly articles and 8 books.

Prof. Israel Yuval teaches since 1993 Jewish History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 2002 he founded and directed until 2010 the Scholion – Interdisciplinary Institute for the Research of Judaism. Since March 2012 he runs the new Mandel School for Advanced Studies in Humanities at the Hebrew University.

Prof. Meir Bar-Asher teaches at the department of Arabic Language and Literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem where he has been the director of the Institute of Asian and African Studies. Prof. Bar-Asher is an expert on Quranic Studies and Shi’i Islam.

Rachel Furst is a PhD Candidate in Medieval Jewish History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and she teaches Talmud at MaTaN and Ulpanat Amit-Noga.

Prof. Boaz Huss teaches Kabbalah at the Goren-Goldstein Department of Jewish Thought at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. He is an expert of various areas of Kabbalah, including the Zohar and contemporary Kabbalah.

Prof. Jesper Svartvik is Krister Stendahl Professor of Theology of Religions at Lund University and at the Swedish Theological Institute in Jerusalem. He is also a member of the Peer Review Board of Studies in Christian-Jewish Relations.

Rani Jaeger is a Ph.D. Candidate at the Bar Ilan University at the department of Hermeneutics and Cultural Studies. He is also the Director of the Shalom Hartman Institute School for Teacher Education.

Prof. Motti Zalkin is an associate professor of modern Jewish history at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel. His special fields of interest are the social and economic history of the Jews in Eastern Europe, mainly in Lithuania, and the history of Jewish education in Eastern

Nicham Ross is a lecturer in the Department of Jewish Thought at Ben Gurion University specializing in researching identity and tradition in Jewish literature from the beginning of the 20th century. He is also the Director of the Gandel Institute for Adult Jewish Learning.

Assaf Tamari is a PhD Candidate at the department for Jewish thought in Ben-Gurion University. His main field of expertise is sixteenth-century Lurianic Kabbalah, and his research is focused on the Lurianic Body Discourse.

Prof. Anat Feinberg received her PhD in English literature from London University and has been a lecturer in Literature and Theatre studies at Ben Gurion University and Tel Aviv University. She is since 1990 Professor in Hebrew and Jewish literature at the Hochschule für Jüdische Studien, Heidelberg.

Mordechai (Mordy) Cohen, Scholar-in-residence 2011-2012

Mordechai Cohen is a graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Talmud and Hebrew literature, and has an MA in Bible from the Herzog College at Alon Shvoot. He has taught for many years a wide range of subjects in Jewish Studies aside for holding management positions in informal education organizations.

Visiting Scholars 2011-2012

Prof. Yair Zakovitch has served as Head of the Institute of Jewish Studies at the Hebrew University, and also as its Dean of Humanities. His primary research interests are the Bible as literature, biblical thought and ancient interpretation of the Bible.

Prof. Avigdor Shinan is Professor of Hebrew Literature. His fields of research are the Midrashic and Aggadic literature, the Aramaic Translations of the Bible and the Jewish Prayer book. His list of publication contains more than 120 scholarly articles and 8 books.

Prof. Motti Zalkin is an associate professor of modern Jewish history at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel. His special fields of interest are the social and economic history of the Jews in Eastern Europe, mainly in Lithuania, and the history of Jewish education in Eastern Europe.

Prof. Boaz Huss teaches Kabbalah at the Goren-Goldstein Department of Jewish Thought at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. He is an expert of various areas of Kabbalah, including the Zohar and contemporary Kabbalah.

Rachel Furst is a PhD Candidate in Medieval Jewish History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and she teaches Talmud at MaTaN and Ulpanat Amit-Noga.

Prof. Frederek Musall studied Jewish studies, Islamic studies, Semitic languages ​​and comparative religion at Heidelberg and Jerusalem. He received his PhD in 2005 on Moses Maimonides and Hasdai Crescas. He is currently Professor of Jewish Thought at the Hochschule für Jüdische Studien, Heidelberg.

Rani Jaeger is a Ph.D. Candidate at the Bar Ilan University at the department of Hermeneutics and Cultural Studies. He is also the Director of the Shalom Hartman Institute School for Teacher Education.

Prof. Jesper Svartvik is Krister Stendahl Professor of Theology of Religions at Lund University and at the Swedish Theological Institute in Jerusalem. He is also a member of the Peer Review Board of Studies in Christian-Jewish Relations.

Assaf Tamari is a PhD Candidate at the department for Jewish thought in Ben-Gurion University. His main field of expertise is sixteenth-century Lurianic Kabbalah, and his research is focused on the Lurianic Body Discourse.

Nicham Ross is a lecturer in the Department of Jewish Thought at Ben Gurion University specializing in researching identity and tradition in Jewish literature from the beginning of the 20th century. He is also the Director of the Gandel Institute for Adult Jewish Learning.

Prof. Anat Feinberg received her PhD in English literature from London University and has been a lecturer in Literature and Theatre studies at Ben Gurion University and Tel Aviv University. She is since 1990 Professor in Hebrew and Jewish literature at the Hochschule für Jüdische Studien, Heidelberg.

Prof. Meir Bar-Asher teaches at the department of Arabic Language and Literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem where he has been the director of the Institute of Asian and African Studies. Prof. Bar-Asher is an expert on Quranic Studies and Shi’i Islam.

Amit Gvaryahu, Scholar-in-residence 2010-2011

Amit is a graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Talmud and Classics, and an MA candidate at the same institution. He was also a junior lecturer there between 2008 and 2010. Amit is also a member of the steering committee for Yeshivat Talpiot, an egalitarian yeshiva initiative in Jerusalem.

Yedidah Koren, Scholar-in-residence 2010-2011

Yedidah is a graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Talmud and Classics, and a fellow of the advanced Talmud Program at MATAN, Jerusalem. Yedidah is an instructor at the Drisha Institute for Jewish Education in New York, and is also a member of the steering committee for Yeshivat Talpiot, an egalitarian yeshiva initiative in Jerusalem.

Visiting Scholars 2010-2011

Prof. Yair Zakovitch has served as Head of the Institute of Jewish Studies at the Hebrew University, and also as its Dean of Humanities. His primary research interests are the Bible as literature, biblical thought and ancient interpretation of the Bible.

Dr. Dina Stein earned her Ph.D. in the Dept. of Hebrew Literature at the Hebrew University where she. She teaches rabbinic and folk literature at the Dept. of Hebrew and Comparative Literature, University of Haifa.

Assaf Tamari is a doctoral student at the department for Jewish thought in Ben-Gurion University. His main field of expertise is sixteenth-century Lurianic Kabbalah, and his research is focused on the Lurianic Body Discourse.

Dr. Miriam Frenkel is a Genizah researcher. She teaches medieval Jewish history in the lands of Islam at the Hebrew University. Her research includes many aspects of Jewish Life under Islam: literacy, slavery, gender, children and adolescents, material culture and mental patterns.

Pinchas Roth is a doctoral student in the Talmud Department at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, where he is writing about Halakhic literature from 13th century Southern France. His research combines methodologies of Talmudic philology, medieval history and manuscript studies.

Prof. Jesper Svartvik is Krister Stendahl Professor of Theology of Religions at Lund University and at the Swedish Theological Institute in Jerusalem. He is also a member of the Peer Review Board of Studies in Christian-Jewish Relations.

Prof. Meir Bar-Asher teaches at the department of Arabic Language and Literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem where he has been the director of the Institute of Asian and African Studies. Prof. Bar-Asher is an expert on Quranic Studies and Shi’i Islam.

Dr. Yael Shenker teaches Hebrew literature and culture at the Film Department at Sapir College and at Hadassah College in Jerusalem. Her research deals with the literature and film of the religious community in Israel.

Prof. Motti Zalkin is an associate professor of modern Jewish history at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel. His special fields of interest are the social and economic history of the Jews in Eastern Europe, mainly in Lithuania, and the history of Jewish education in Eastern Europe.

Dr. Avriel Bar-Levav is senior lecturer at the department of History, Philosophy and Judaic Studies at the Open University of Israel where he has been head of department. His areas of research are Jewish attitudes towards death, Jewish magic and history of the Jewish book.

Rani Jaeger is a doctoral student at the Bar Ilan University at the department of Hermeneutics and Cultural Studies. He is on the faculty of the Shalom Hartman Institute where he heads the Teachers’ school for pluralistic Jewish education.

Inbal Jaeger, Scholar in Residence 2009-2010

Inbal was born in Jerusalem, and served in the army as a teacher for new immigrants. After her IDF service, she worked as an instructor at the Adam Institute for Peace and Democracy and as a Hebrew teacher for Palestinian students. Inbal holds a B.A. degree in Jewish Philosophy from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and M.A. in Jewish Education from the Shechter Institute.
For the last 10 years, Inbal has been working in the Masorti high school in Jerusalem, teaching Jewish Philosophy and Bible, and serving as a home-room teacher for 10-11th graders. She was also a part of team constructing innovative curricula in Jewish culture for secular high schools.

Rani Jaeger, Scholar in Residence 2009-2010

Rani was born in Tel-Aviv, and served as a medical officer in the IDF. He holds a B.A. degree in Jewish Philosophy and History from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and an M.A. in American History (focusing on 17th century Christian-Puritan theology) from the same institution. Rani is currently pursuing his Ph.D. at the Bar Ilan University, at the department of Hermeneutics and Cultural Studies. For the past 10 years, Rani has been on the faculty of the Shalom Hartman Institute, and currently holds the position of Pedagogical Manager of the Be’eri program for pluralistic Jewish learning in public Israeli high schools. He also teaches at Alma College in Tel-Aviv and at the Tel-Aviv University.
Rani is one of the founders of Beit Tefilah Israel (Israeli House of Prayer), a “secular” synagogue that offers the creation of a new spiritual community in the heart of Tel-Aviv.

Dr Rachel Livneh-Freudenthal, Visiting Scholar Spring 2010

Dr. Rachel Livneh-Freudenthal is a lecturer of Jewish History and Jewish Thought.
Her fields of research are: the emergence of the Science of Judaism, Modern Jewish Thought, Judaism as culture, Jewish Hermeneutics. She has taught at the Freie Universität Berlin, at the Open University, Israel, and at Alma College in Tel-Aviv. She is currently an academic adviser in the Leo Baeck Institute for the Study of the History and Culture of the German-speaking Jewry.

Dr Avriel Bar-Levav, Visiting Scholar Spring 2010

Dr. Avriel Bar-Levav, Ph.D. Jewish Thought, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, is senior lecturer at the department of History, Philosophy and Judaic Studies at the Open University of Israel, and was head of the department between 2005 and 2008. Since 2001 he is the editor of the scholarly quarterly Pe’amim: Studies in Oriental Jewry, published by the Ben-Zvi institute in Jerusalem. His publications are on Jewish attitudes towards death, Jewish magic and history of the Jewish book.

Professor Mordechai Zalkin, Visiting Scholar Spring 2010

Prof. Mordechai (Motti) Zalkin was born in Jerusalem and received his university training at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is an associate professor of modern Jewish history at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel. His special fields of interest are the social and economic history of the Jews in Eastern Europe, mainly in Lithuania, and the history of Jewish education in Eastern Europe. Among his publications are A New Dawn: The Jewish Enlightenment in the Russian Empire – Social Aspects (2000); From the Hidden Treasures of Jewish Vilna: Historical Documents From the Annals of Lithuanian Jewry (2001); The City of Vilna (Ed.)(2002); From Heder to School: Modernization Processes in Nineteenth Century East European Jewish Education (2008).

Yair Lipshitz, Visiting Scholar Spring 2010

Yair Lipshitz is currently completing his PhD at the Department for Theatre Arts in Tel Aviv University, writing on the body as a hermeneutical site for Jewish textual culture in theatre and drama. He is a Junior Fellow at the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem, as well a lecturer at Department for Theatre Arts in Tel Aviv University and at Alma College for Hebrew Culture in Tel Aviv. His book, The Holy Tongue, Comedy’s Version: Intertextual Dramas on the Stage of “A Comedy of Betrothal,” is forthcoming from Bar-Ilan University Press, as part of the “Hermeneutics and Culture” series. He has also published papers on theatre as Midrash, Renaissance Italian-Jewish theatre, early 20th century Jewish theatre and drama, and the body in Rabbi nic literature. Lipshitz is also a published playwright, working with Jewish cultural sources in his drama. His play, A Moment of Relief, was included in the Hebrew anthology New Voices in Israeli Drama (2006).

Dr Rachel Ofer, Visiting Scholar Spring 2010

Rachel Ofer’s academic studies for the first and second degree (BA, MA) in Hebrew Literature were at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her Ph.D. Thesis (recently submitted) was written at Bar Ilan University, and deals with “The Transformations of King Saul in Modern Hebrew Literature: Themes, Poetics and Inter-textuality”. Her main field of research is Modern Hebrew Literature and its Dialogue with the Bible. She published about 20 articles.
R. Ofer established the Department of Hebrew Literature in Herzog College, Allon Shevut, where she teaches Modern Hebrew Literature. She also teaches in Efrata College in Jerusalem. She advised high-school teachers, and was a member of different committees in the Ministry of Education that determine the curriculum of Literature in Israeli schools. She is married to Prof. Yosef Ofer.

Professor Jesper Svartvik, Visiting Scholar Spring 2010

Jesper Svartvik is Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Theology and Religious Studies at Lund University and at the Swedish Research Council. He is also a member of the Peer Review Board of Studies in Christian-Jewish Relations.

Pinchas Roth, Visiting Scholar Spring 2010

Pinchas Roth is a doctoral student in the Talmud Department at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, where he is writing about Halakhic literature from 13th century Southern France. Born in Melbourne, Australia in 1978, Pinchas moved to Israel with his family in 1988. His research combines methodologies of Talmudic philology, medieval history and manuscript studies. His publications include ‘On Some Rabbinic Fragments from the European Genizah’, Materia Giudaica 10 (2005).

Dr Levi Spectre, Visiting Scholar Autumn 2009

Faculty, Open University, Israel, holds PhD from Stockholm University and is library fellow at the Van Leer institute in Jerusalem. Levi Spectre specializes in epistemology (issues pertaining to philosophical accounts of knowledge, evidence, belief, rationality and justification). As part of his philosophy studies at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem he tutored several courses (relevantly Aristotle’s metaphysics and ethics).

Dr Miriam Frenkel, Visiting Scholar Autumn 2009

Dr. Miriam Frenkel, Ph.d. is Genizah researcher. She teaches medieval Jewish history in the lands of Islam at the Hebrew University. Her recent book, The Compassionate and Benevolent; the Leading Elite in the Jewish Community of Alexandria in the Middle Ages, Jerusalem 2007, offers a new perspective on Jewish Medieval leadership. Her other publications concern many aspects of Jewish Life under Islam: literacy, slavery, gender, children and adolescents, material culture and mental patterns.

Professor Boaz Huss, Visiting Scholar Autumn 2009

Professor Boaz Huss teaches Kabbalah at the Goren-Goldstein Department of Jewish Thought at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. He is an expert of various areas of Kabbalah, including the Zohar and contemporary Kabbalah. His recent publications include: Like the radiance of the Sky: Chapters in the Reception History of the Zohar and the Construction of its Symbolic Value, Ben Zvi: Jerusalem, 2008; “All you Need is LAV”: Madonna and Postmodern Kabbalah, The Jewish Quarterly Review 95, 2005; The New Age of Kabbalah: Contemporary Kabbalah, The New Age and Postmodern Spirituality, Journal of Modern Jewish Studies 6, 2007; Authorizes Guardians: The Polemics of Academic Scholars of Jewish Mysticism Against Kabbalah Practitioners, Political Encounters: Esoteric Discourse and its Others O. Hammer, K. von Stuckrad eds, Brill: Leiden and Boston 2007. He is currently engaged in a research project Major Trends in 20th Kabbalah, funded by Israeli Science Foundation.

Professor Avigdor Shinan, Visiting Scholar Autumn 2009

Professor Shinan was born in Prague 1946 and arrived to Israel in 1949. His academic studies (BA, PhD) were at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where he has taught since 1972 at the Department of Hebrew Literature (full professor since 1998). His fields of research are the Midrashic and Aggadic literature, the Aramaic Translations of the Bible and the Jewish Prayer book. His list of publication contains more than 120 scholarly articles and 8 books.

Dr. Jonathan Ben-Dov, Visiting Scholar Autumn 2009

Dr. Jonathan Ben-Dov, Ph.D. Bible, teaches at the Bible department of Haifa University. He studies approaches towards nature in Hebrew religion – the Bible, apocalyptic literature, Dead sea Scrolls – and in the Mesopotamian culture. His book “Head of All years: Astronomy and Calendars at Qumran” appaered in 2008. His studies involve the history of science as well as the Israelite responses towards ancient religions of nature and towards the emerging natural sciences in the early Hellenistic period.

Yehudit Mazal, Scholar-in-Residence 2008-2009

Yehudit Mazal has a rich background in different Jewish study groups (Batei-Midrash), both as a participant and instructor. Her education includes a bachelor degree in Jewish thought and psychology from the Hebrew University and a bachelor degree in social work from Bar Ilan University. In the last years she has been working as a social worker with homeless youth in Jerusalem, participated in “Elul” Beit-Midrash, and was a staff member in ”Maagal” (a Beit-midrash program for high-schools).

Assaf Rosen-Zvi, Scholar-in-Residence 2008-2009

Assaf Rosen-Zvi obtained his B.A. and M.A. in Talmud at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His Master thesis is on ’The Halachic Authority of Non-Halachic Scriptures, and he is currently working on his doctorate thesis on the subject of Midrashic Hermeneutics and the relations between Halacha and Agadah. In the last two years he was teaching Talmud at the Hebrew university. He previously studied for two years at the Department of Film and Television in the Faculty of the Arts, Tel-Aviv University.
Assaf Rosen-Zvi is the Scholar-in-Residence at Paideia 2008/09.

Professor Hamutal Bar-Yosef, Visiting Scholar Spring 2009

Professor Hamutal Bar-Yosef is a poet (9 collections), a translator of poetry (Russian, French, English), and a professor emerita of modern Hebrew literature at Ben-Gurion University, Beer-Sheva. Her main fields of research are modern Hebrew literature, the East-European context of modern Jewish culture and mysticism in modern Hebrew literature.

Professor Meir Bar Asher, Visiting Scholar Spring 2009

Professor Meir M. Bar-Asher has done his academic studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He teaches at the department of Arabic Language and Literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and until a few months ago he was the director of the Institute of Asian and African Studies there.
Professor Bar-Asher is an expert on Quranic Studies and Shi`i Islam. He is the author of Scripture and Exegesis in Early Imami Shiism (Jerusalem and Leiden 1999), and of numerous articles in the field of Imami Shi`ism, and Quran. Professor Bar-Asher has written (in collaboration with his colleague Dr. Aryeh Kofsky) the book, The Nusayri-Alawi Religion: An Enquiry into its Theology and Doctrine (Leiden 2002).

Dr. Aviezer Cohen, Visiting Scholar Spring 2009

Dr. Aviezer Cohen’s academic studies include doctoral studies at Ben Gurion University, with the thesis on the topic: “Self-Consciousness in Mei Ha-Shiloah – As the Nexus Between God and Man”. Dr Cohen has been a lecturer at Michelet (College) Herzog in Alon Shvut, at the Ben Gurion University and various other institutions.

Professor Elchanan Reiner, Visiting Scholar Spring 2009

Professor Elchanan Reiner teaches in the Department of Jewish History at Tel Aviv University. His study of early modern Jewish society in Europe has recently focused on the cultural history of the Ashkenazi society in central and Eastern Europe between the sixteenth and the seventeenth centuries. He is currently writing a book on the transformation and preservation of knowledge as expressed in the Ashkenazi attitude toward the printed book. Reiner’s scholarly work also examines the popular religion of medieval Jewish society, with a particular interest in the study of pilgrimage and sacred space in Palestine.

Ynon Wygoda, Visiting Scholar Spring 2009

Ynon Wygoda obtained his B.A. in classics and philosophy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and is currently pursuing his graduate studies in the same institute with a thesis on “The phenomenology of silence”.

He previously worked as the archivist of the Salman Schocken Institute, in various research projects in the Spinoza Institute and at the Hebrew University and served as the “Amalie Beer” Scholar-in-Residence at Paideia in 2007-2008.

Dr. Yair Shiffman, Visiting Scholar Autumn 2008

Dr. Yair Shiffman was born in Haifa, Israel in 1940. He has conducted all his academic studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His Ph.D. (1991) dissertation was: “Rabbi Shem Tov ben Joseph Falaquera’ Moreh Ha-Moreh: A Philosophical and Philological Analysis with an Appendix Containing an Annotated Critical Edition”. His M.A. (cum laude) was in History of the Jewish People, and his B.A. (1965) was in History of Islamic Peoples and Arabic Language and Literature. Dr. Shiffman also holds a Teaching Certificate for teaching Arabic from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In David Yellin Teachers College he headed the History and Jewish Department and the Department of Arabic and Islam.

Dr. Israel Knohl, Visiting Scholar Autumn 2008

Israel Knohl is Y. Kaufmann Professor of Bible at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem. He earned his Ph. D. at the Hebrew University and did postdoctoral studies at Princeton. He has taught as visiting professor at Stanford University, the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Chicago. His first book, The Sanctuary of Silence won the Z. Shkop Award for Biblical Studies. His second book The Messiah before Jesus was published in eight languages. His third book The Divine Symphony was a finalist for the National Jewish Book Award.