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The British Association for Jewish Studies (BAJS) is pleased to invite paper and panel proposals for its 2014 annual meeting, which will convene in Trinity College Dublin from 13 to 15 July. The conference theme is ‘Jews and Political Discourse.’ We welcome contributions from all periods and regions, whether narrowly focused or broadly contextual, synthetic or analytical. We would encourage contributions from those working in interdisciplinary areas, as well as from scholars who do not usually attend the BAJS conference. A postgraduate student workshop is planned and some bursaries will be available.

We are delighted to announce that the keynote lectures will delivered by Professor Moshe Halbertal, Professor of Jewish Thought and Philosophy at the Hebrew University and Gruss Professor at NYU Law School and Professor Paul Franks, Professor of Philosophy and Judaic Studies at Yale University.

A number of cultural events in Dublin are planned including a special display of Hebrew books from the collections of the Old Library, Trinity College Dublin and Marsh’s Library. There will also be private tours of the Irish Jewish Museum and of the Chester Beatty Library.

Please forward an abstract of 200-300 words to Dr. Zuleika Rodgers (rodgersz@tcd.ie) with name, institutional and departmental affiliation, as well as a contact e-mail address by 1 May, 2014.

Register for the BAJS 2014 Conference in Dublin.

For the 2014 Annual Meeting, we are planning two sessions: 1) The first session, whose participants will be invited, will be devoted to Sarah Pearce’s commentary-in-progress on Philo’s De Decalogo for the Philo of Alexandria Commentary Series. 2) For the second, companion session, we invite scholars at all career levels to submit proposals on the general topic of Philo’s legal exegesis and its connections to the wider fields of ancient Judaism, rabbinic exegesis, and the legal cultures of the Greco-Roman world (including Egypt). Since Philo is one of the earliest Jewish commentators to expound detailed explanations of possible reasons for the commandments of the Torah, we are particularly interested in offers of papers relating to his rationalizations of the laws.

For this year’s annual meeting, in San Diego, California (Nov. 22-25), the Philo Seminar will be focusing on Philo’s De Decalogo along with a companion session on Philo’ s legal exegesis (see below). We are inviting proposals for the second session and would appreciate it if you would share this call for papers with any colleagues or graduate students who may be interested. You may propose a paper to the Philo Seminar at this link: http://www.sbl-site.org/meetings/Congresses_CallForPaperDetails.aspx?MeetingId=25&VolunteerUnitId=14.

Deadline for proposals:  Tuesday, March 4, 11:59 PM Eastern Time.

CALL FOR PAPERS

The aim of the conference is to bring together scholars from a variety of disciplines who are engaged in research relating to any aspect of Israel Studies, including Politics, Literature, History, Economics, Language, Culture, Music, and Art.

It will continue to build on areas previously investigated in the academic literature and to open up new fields of intellectual enquiry.

The organizers welcome all proposals, including suggestions for panels which are pertinent to Israel Studies.

The EAIS will offer a limited number of travel and accommodation stipends to enable postgraduate research students and junior faculty to attend the conference.

Please send an abstract of 200-250 words together with a short biography (50-100 words) no later than Monday, 12 May 2014 to Kirsten Thompson.

All proposals are subject to a review process, and decisions on both papers and panels will be taken by mid June 2014.

The conference will be conducted in English.

All presenters at the conference must be fully paid-up members of the EAIS.

Please consult the Membership and EAIS Charter sections of our website for more information about becoming a member of the EAIS.

Further information and registration details for the 3rd Annual Conference on Israel Studies will be published on our website in due course.

www.soas.ac.uk/eais

Applications are invited to participate in this workshop, to be held in Oxford, at the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies in Yarnton Manor, on 16–17 June 2014.

Please submit your application in English, with a short CV and an abstract (not more than 500 words) of a research paper to be discussed in the workshop. Bursaries to cover travel expenses and accommodation will be available for selected participants. Please indicate in your application whether you would like to be considered for a bursary, including an estimate of your travel expenses.

The workshop will be devoted to discussion of the research papers, which will be circulated to all participants in advance.

Submissions should be sent to the AHRC Project Officer in the Faculty of Oriental Studies, University of Oxford (josephus@orinst.ox.ac.uk), by 26 February 2014. For further information about participation in the workshop and about bursaries, please contact the Project Officer.

Applicants will be informed of the result of their applications on or before 7 March 2014.

The workshop will be the fourth in a series, as part of a project on the reception of Josephus in Jewish culture from the 18th century to the present. In this workshop, on the Jewish reception of Josephus in the 20th and 21st centuries, participants are invited to examine the role of Josephus in the wide spectrum of Jewish politics, culture, religious life, scholarship and education from the early twentieth century through the foundation of the State of Israel to the present, raising questions such as:

  • How does Josephus figure in Zionist thought? How did Liberals, Orthodox Jews and Bundists use his works and image in debates about Jewish nationalism?
  • What use was made of the writings of Josephus by Jews during the Shoah and in its aftermath?
  • What was the role of Josephus’ descriptions in interpreting the archaeology and geography of the land in the early years of the State of Israel?
  • How has Josephus’ work been re-evaluated in the late twentieth century and today in debates about post-Zionist reassessments of the foundation and ideologies of the State of Israel?
  • How do Jews in Europe and the United States refer to Josephus in discussing the conditions and meanings of Jewish life in the diaspora?
  • How is Josephus depicted in children’s literature, educational material, museums and popular culture?

Previous workshops addressed “The Reception of Josephus by Jews and Christians from Late Antiquity to c. 1750” (7–8 January, 2013), “The Jewish Reception of Josephus in the 18th and 19th Centuries in Western Europe” (17–18 June 2013), and “The Jewish Reception of Josephus in the 19th and early 20th Centuries in Central and Eastern Europe” (6–7 January 2014). For more details, please visit http://www.orinst.ox.ac.uk/research/josephus.

We plan to publish a selection of the studies discussed at the four workshops in a volume, to share the results of the project and to help to define the agenda for future research.

Martin Goodman, Tessa Rajak, Andrea Schatz

We would like to invite graduate students from within or without Hebrew Studies, as well as academics, artists and other interested parties to submit proposals for the Cambridge Hebrew Graduate Conference 2014, “Patterns of Protest in Hebrew Culture: Memory, Agents and Representation,” to be held on Tuesday 6 May 2014 at Cambridge. The conference aims to facilitate and promote discussion in the field of Modern Hebrew Studies, stimulating scholarship in the UK academy and bringing it into conversation with academics from around the world.

Recent waves of political protest in the Middle East have drawn critical focus to tensions regarding the future of societies and communities in the region and to the clash of worldviews and visions. Protest and the changes it brings are difficult phenomena to measure, and we tend to understand them mainly through examining political systems and the actions of leaders. In this conference we wish to promote a different debate by taking focus away from speeches in Parliament and statements to the media and aiming it toward the dynamics of culture.

2011′s wave of social protest in Israel caught many by surprise, as hundreds of thousands of Israelis took to the streets to demand social justice, a lower cost of living and a government response to the concerns of the middle class. Although the social justice movement challenged 21st century Israeli neo-liberalism, it often did so by employing the rhetoric of a diverse tradition of Hebrew texts, from Amir Gilboa’s poetry to the words of the Hebrew Bible.

The link between Hebrew texts and political and social protest is as ancient as the books of the prophets. Throughout history, Hebrew writers have articulated the prohibited and the revolutionary, in advance – and in advancement – of wider public acceptance. What part, then, has protest played in shaping Hebrew culture, throughout its history and in the present?

The purpose of this conference is to bring together young scholars from different disciplines to investigate the historical and cultural significance of Hebrew as a language of protest, and the forms of expression of protest and protest movements – topics surprisingly unexplored by academia. We welcome contributions that consider this theme from diverse theoretical perspectives and academic disciplines. We particularly welcome papers that examine the complimentarity and tensions between political dissent and Hebrew literary production – how is protest rendered intelligible in ways that serve to contain or depoliticize struggles? How has Hebrew, the language of tradition, served these modes of dissent as a means of reclaiming agency in the face of existing power structures? And how, in contemporary Israel, is Hebrew protested against as the language of power?

Participants will be invited to present their work as part of themed panels, followed by questions and discussion with Cambridge students, academics and fellow conference attendees.

Abstracts of 300-500 words are requested by 1 February 2014, with accepted papers to follow in full by March. Please submit abstracts, along with a brief academic C.V, to chgc2014@gmail.com. Any further queries may be sent to the same address.

Comics and graphic narratives are currently receiving substantial attention in popular culture and academic disciplines across the arts and humanities. The rise of genres such as graphic memoirs, graphic journalism and graphic histories, for example, indicates that the representation of lived experience in comics form has become central to explorations of individual and collective identities, and to the documentation of historical and social events. But how, if at all, does the representation of often deeply personal feelings and individual experiences connect to collective events and identities? Can we identify shared themes and concerns in the work of contemporary Jewish women comics artists? This interdisciplinary one-day symposium will put academics and cartoonists in dialogue with one another to discuss comics by and about Jewish women.

This event runs in conjunction with the opening of Graphic Details: Confessional Comics by Jewish Women, at Space Station 65, Kennington (October- November 2014). Graphic Details has been touring since it opened in San Francisco in 2010 and then moved to Toronto, New York, Washington, Portland and Miami.  This show is the first museum exhibit dedicated to the contribution Jewish women have made to the genre of autobiographical comic (see www.forward.com/graphic-details/). The artists, who hail from the U.S., Canada, Israel and the UK include: Vanessa Davis; Bernice Eisenstein; Sarah Glidden; Miriam Katin; Aline Kominsky-Crumb; Miss Lasko-Gross; Sarah Lazarovic; Miriam Libicki; Sarah Lightman; Diane Noomin; Corinne Pearlman; Trina Robbins; Racheli Rotner; Sharon Rudahl; Laurie Sandell; Ariel Schrag; Lauren Weinstein; and Ilana Zeffren. Graphic Details is co-curated by Sarah Lightman and Michael Kaminer and is sponsored by The Jewish Daily Forward. Graphic Details: Essays on Confessional Comics by Jewish Women, edited by Sarah Lightman, will be published by McFarland in 2014.

The exhibition is complemented by the symposium, which provides a forum for sharing ideas, research and artwork: a space for dialogues both on and off the page, in both text and image. Confirmed participants include Dr. David Brauner (University of Reading) and Dr Ariela Freedman (Concordia University), and Graphic Details Artist Corinne Pearlman (Playing the Jewish Card). The day will conclude with a cartoonist roundtable open to the public.

We invite contributions for 20-minute papers that explore the intersections between Jewishness and other forms of identification and identity in comics and graphic narratives by women. Papers may address but are no limited to the following themes and issues :

Literary & Cultural Contexts, e.g.

  • The role of women in Jewish comic storytelling and the traditions of Jewish literature
  • The role of comics by Jewish women in contemporary literature
  • The genres of confession, memoir, and autobiographical literature
  • Theoretical frameworks for reading Jewish women’s comics individually and collectively

Religion & Politics, e.g.

  • Comic book writing about Israel and Palestine
  • Depictions of marriage, partnerships, and interfaith relationships
  • Portraying Judaism and religion in graphic detail
  • The cultural politics of heroes and villains

Gender, Sexuality & the Body, e.g.

  • The “Jewish Body” and its transformations in comics
  • Gender identification in changing social and artistic discourses
  • Mothers, daughters, and other family dynamics reflected in graphic storytelling
  • Intimacy and sexuality; feminism and sexual politics
  • Representations of illness

Proposals for 20 minute papers or panels comprising three papers should be emailed by 15 May 2014 to the organizers Sarah Lightman s.lightman.1@research.gla.ac.uk, and Heike Bauer h.bauer@bbk.ac.uk .   Please include a 300-word abstract plus a short biographical note. You are welcome to submit images to supplement your abstract submission.

We are delighted to announce that Studies in Comics 6.2 (2015) will be specially dedicated to this conference and proceedings, and guest edited by Sarah Lightman and Heike Bauer.

This symposium is supported by JW3, The Jewish Daily Forward, Space Station 65, McFarland, Birkbeck College London, Stirling Maxwell Centre University of Glasgow, The Department of Hebrew and Jewish Studies UCL and Studies in Comics (Intellect Publishing).

Confirmed keynote speakers:

Professor Donald Bloxham (University of Edinburgh)
Professor Sue Vice (University of Sheffield)

Britain’s role in the events we now call the Holocaust remains controversial. Since 1945 historians based at British institutions have assessed British foreign, domestic, military, economic and social policy in the 1930s and early 1940s to understand Britain’s role in the complex events of the genocide of Jews in Europe. Holocaust historiography written by scholars based in British universities has contributed to the field of Holocaust studies and influenced major historiographical trends in the last twenty years. In recent decades, the study of the Holocaust in Britain has embraced a variety of disciplines in the Humanities. Ever more detailed research into aspects of the Holocaust and its aftermath is carried out at British universities. In particular, the study of the after-effects of the Holocaust in the arts has become a prominent area of study. In addition, the contribution of British educators and researchers to the growing field of Holocaust education and memorialisation has become its own area of investigation and increasingly critical study of its history is developing.

The first conference of the British Association for Holocaust Studies presents an opportunity to shed further light on the developments in the field of Holocaust studies in Britain, review its achievements of the last c.70 years, and suggest ways of development in the future.

In addition to papers on the conference theme, we welcome proposals from scholars pursuing original scholarly research in any aspect of Holocaust studies.

The two-day conference in 2014 will offer the opportunity to assess the landscape of Holocaust Studies in Britain. The British Association for Holocaust Studies invites papers which include, but are not limited to, the following themes:

  • the study of Britain’s role in the Holocaust.
  • the contributions of scholars based in Britain to the study of the Holocaust and its aftermath since the end of World War II; this includes all disciplines and fields of research.
  • scholarship from Britain in the larger, international context of Holocaust studies; papers in this area may, for example, review the developments of fields of study which include significant contributions by scholars in Britain or which focus on the study of Britain’s relationship to the genocide of Jews as the events were unfolding; again a range of disciplinary perspectives is welcome.
  • British historians and the historiography of the Holocaust.
  • the development and role of Holocaust education across the UK, including the role of government, NGOs, and the school and tertiary sectors.

We invite proposals for papers of 20min length (which will be followed by 10min questions). Please send an .rtf file with an abstract of no more than 250 words including a 100-word bio and contact details to h.holtschneider@ed.ac.uk.

In addition to the main conference, a postgraduate forum will take place. We invite short presentations of 15min from current PhD students at British universities introducing their research. The presentations will be followed by discussion. This is independent of the conference theme and concerns all PhD research in all fields and disciplines relating to the study of the Holocaust. Sole criterion for sending a proposal is registration as a PhD student at a university in the UK. Please send an .rtf file with an abstract of no more than 250 words including a 100-word bio, the name and department of your supervisor, and your contact details to h.holtschneider@ed.ac.uk.

Deadline for paper proposals: Friday 31 January 2014. Proposals will be peer reviewed.

Acceptance of papers will be notified by Friday 28 February 2014.

Registration for presenters is mandatory by Friday 2 May 2014.

Please contact h.holtschneider@ed.ac.uk with any queries.

For more information about the British Association for Holocaust Studies go to http://www.southampton.ac.uk/bahs/.

Project Leaders: Professor Shlomo Berger, University of Amsterdam

and Dr César Merchán-Hamann, OCHJS/Bodleian Library

 Call for applications for Fellowships

Closing date: 8 January 2014

Amsterdam was the centre of Jewish printing in Europe from 1650 to 1800. Research into the extensive collections of Amsterdam printed material assembled in the Bodleian Library and the Leopold Muller Memorial Library is expected to yield significant results for the study of Dutch and European Jewish cultural history in the early modern period.

The central question to be tackled in the Seminar will be the role of books in the lives of authors and readers, highlighting the texts which were significant for Jewish readers as well as the books which are important for study of Jewish cultural and intellectual history in this period.  The Seminar welcomes scholars who study particular authors, texts or books, as well all those who deal with structures of readership or genres, or other issues affecting the preparation of texts for publication, such as editing, correcting and typesetting, and the provision of finance.

Weekly seminars will be convened through the duration of two Oxford terms between January and June 2015.

Visiting Fellows will receive free accommodation provided by the Centre and a stipend of £750 (pro rata) per calendar month during the period of their tenure.  Travelling expenses up to £500 will also be provided.

Applications by senior scholars, and by scholars at postdoctoral and advanced doctoral level, are all welcome.

For more detailed information see: http://www.ochjs.ac.uk/

Or contact:

Professor Shlomo Berger (S.Z.Berger@uva.nl)

Dr César Merchán-Hamann (cesar@ochjs.ac.uk)

The next International Meeting of the Jewish Law Association will take place in Antwerp, Belgium, on 14th-17th July 2014, hosted by the university’s Institute for Jewish Studies directed by Professor Vivian Liska.

The Conference will give preference to papers on the theme “Judaism, Law and Literature”, viewed broadly as including papers on any period (law and literature in the Bible, rabbinic literature, and modern secular literature), and as encompassing both law in literature and law as literature, from both applied and theoretical/methodological perspectives. Comparative perspectives will also be welcome.

Proposals of papers should be sent to the Chair of the Conference Organising Committee, Professor Bernard Jackson at jacksob@hope.ac.uk by December 31st 2013. They should contain a title and abstract.

Further details on the Association’s web site: http://jewishlawassociation.org (Conferences page).

Editors: Ilan Zvi Baron (Durham University) and Keith Kahn-Harris (Editor, Jewish Journal of Sociology)

In post-enlightenment Europe, both Jewish and non-Jewish political thought was preoccupied by what came to be called the Jewish Question. The Jewish Question asked what the appropriate status of Jews should be within the nation state and in particular whether or not Jewish ‘separateness’ could be maintained. There were a variety of answers given to this question, including: the creation of a nation state for the Jews, forms of autonomy within multi-ethnic states, radical assimilation, the relegation of Jewish difference to the private sphere, and the anti-Semitic removal of all Jewish difference from the body politic of the nation state.

By the middle of the 20th Century, the Question appeared to have been resolved. Two particular moments were key: the declaration of the State of Israel on May 14 1948 and its recognition by the United Nations; and the adoption by the United Nations General Assembly on December 10th of the same year of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The first moment created a Jewish nation state where Jews could achieve sovereignty as Jews. The second officially recognized the rights of minorities such as Jews within nation states. 1948 embedded both national and Diaspora-based answers to the Jewish Question within international law and the nation state system.

Today, in the 65th year of the State of Israel, the Zionist answer to the Jewish Question has demonstrated its success. Israel is now the country with the largest Jewish population in the world and has become a pillar in the construction of modern Jewish identity. The Diaspora-focused answer to the Jewish Question has also been successful in at least some countries, especially in North America and Western Europe, where Jews have become a prosperous minority without being threatened by officially-sanctioned anti-Semitism.

However, both of these answers have led to unforeseen complications. Being Jewish can mean different things to Israelis than to Diaspora Jews. Moreover, the security issues in the Jewish State remain intensely controversial. Nor have fears about anti-Semitism, assimilation and Jewish disappearance receded, particularly in the Diaspora.

It is worth asking therefore, how far the underlying assumptions that framed the Jewish Question remain valid. The debates that frame Diaspora/Israel relations are often predicated on an assumption that it is only within the nation state system that Jews can find a political space. Does the answer to the Jewish Question still lie within the nation state system? Have the Jewish Question’s core spatial assumptions led to the creation of questions that cannot be answered on their own terms? Indeed, have the Jews always been politically a spatial people? What kinds of alternative political spaces exist and have existed for the Jews? Are there temporal themes that the spatially-focused Jewish Question has ignored? Indeed, is the Jewish Question even still relevant in the age of Israel? What unforeseen challenges have the assimilationist and Zionist answers created? How did a stateless people end up framing a question so tied to state-based political futures and what does the Question have to say about the Diaspora?

The Jewish Journal of Sociology invites papers to explore the relevancy and/or meaning(s) of the Jewish Question today, from a range of theoretical and methodological perspectives. Articles should be between 6-8000 words and will be subject to peer review.

The Special Issue will be published in the second half of 2014. Expressions of interest and completed articles should be sent to Ilan Zvi Baron (ilan.baron(at)durham.ac.uk) or Keith Kahn-Harris (kkahnharris(at)yahoo.co.uk) by February 2014.

For more information on the Jewish Journal of Sociology go to: http://www.jewishjournalofsociology.org/

http://www.jewishjournalofsociology.org/index.php/jjs/announcement/view/6

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