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‘The Other Within’ – The Hebrew and Jewish Collections of The John Rylands Library

Monday 27–Wednesday 29 June 2016 at The John Rylands Library150 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 3EH

Registration deadline approaching (Friday 17 June)

The second John Rylands Research Institute conference will convene scholars, curators and students researching areas represented in the John Rylands Library’s valuable and wide-ranging Hebrew and Jewish collections, including: the Cairo Genizah; medieval Hebrew manuscript codices; early printed Hebrew books; Samaritan manuscripts; and, the collections of Moses Gaster. The full programme is available for download on our website.

Key speakers include: Ben Outhwaite (University of Cambridge), Reinhard Pummer (University of Ottawa), Brad Sabin Hill (George Washington University Libraries) Emile Schrijver (University of Amsterdam), Sarit Shalev-Eyni (Hebrew University of Jerusalem), Ilana Tahan (British Library), Esther-Miriam Wagner (University of Cambridge and Woolf Institute). 

The public keynote lecture will be delivered at 6-7pm on Tuesday 28 June at the John Rylands Library by Sarit Shalev-Eyni (Hebrew University of Jerusalem) on, “New Light from Manchester on Hebrew Illuminated Manuscripts: The John Rylands Collection and its Significance”. The lecture is free to attend, and open to all. To find out more and book a place, visit our Eventbrite page.

Registration for the conference – limited places remaining

Delegates are invited to register for one of the last remaining places at the conference via our website. Deadline for registration is Friday 17 June.

Enquiries should be directed to: jrri.conference2016@manchester.ac.uk.

This event is supported by the European Association of Jewish Studies’ Conference Grant Programme in European Jewish Studies.

‘The Other Within’ – The Hebrew and Jewish Collections of The John Rylands Library

Monday 27–Wednesday 29 June 2016 at The John Rylands Library150 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 3EH

The second John Rylands Research Institute conference will convene scholars, curators and students researching areas represented in the John Rylands Library’s valuable and wide-ranging Hebrew and Jewish collections, including: the Cairo Genizah; medieval Hebrew manuscript codices; early printed Hebrew books; Samaritan manuscripts; and, the collections of Moses Gaster. The full programme is available for download on our website.

Key speakers include: Ben Outhwaite (University of Cambridge), Reinhard Pummer (University of Ottawa), Brad Sabin Hill (George Washington University Libraries) Emile Schrijver (University of Amsterdam), Ilana Tahan (British Library), Esther-Miriam Wagner (University of Cambridge and Woolf Institute). 

The public keynote lecture will be delivered at 6-7pm on Tuesday 28 June at the John Rylands Library by Sarit Shalev-Eyni (Hebrew University of Jerusalem) on, “New Light from Manchester on Hebrew Illuminated Manuscripts: The John Rylands Collection and its Significance”. The lecture is free to attend, and open to all. To find out more and book a place, visit our Eventbrite page.

Registration for the conference is now open!

Delegates are invited to register to attend the conference via our website. Places are very limited, and we would encourage delegates to attend as much for the conference as possible.

Enquiries should be directed to: jrri.conference2016@manchester.ac.uk.

This event is supported by the European Association of Jewish Studies’ Conference Grant Programme in European Jewish Studies.

 

The relationship between Shakespeare and the Jews is a rich and multifaceted one with an extensive history dating back to the Elizabethan era. Attitudes to Jews in Shakespeare’s England comprise a complex topic with religious, racial, and cultural components that has been explored in detail in James Shapiro’s seminal 1996 work Shakespeare and the Jews. Jewish elements within Shakespeare’s work extend far beyond the infamous and well-studied figure of Shylock in The Merchant of Venice, and the history of critical and interpretative approaches to such elements is extremely variegated, including shifting perceptions of Shylock on the page and stage over the centuries, different ways of addressing Jewish themes within the plays in writing and performance, and the various representations of Jews and Judaism in translations of Shakespeare into other languages, both in Europe and globally.

Likewise, Shakespeare’s reception among the Jews has a dynamic history of its own, including translation, performance, and criticism. Jewish engagement with Shakespeare is traceable to the early decades of the Jewish Enlightenment in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, when Hebrew authors in Central Europe first began looking to Shakespeare as a literary role model and candidate for translation. The 1870s saw the first Hebrew translations of complete plays with Isaac Salkinson’s ground-breaking versions of Othello and Romeo and Juliet, which paved the way for the eventual emergence of a more extensive body of Hebrew translations in early twentieth-century Palestine and New York. These in turn led to the proliferation of later Hebrew translations ranging from the mid-twentieth century work of prominent poets such as Natan Alterman, Leah Goldberg, and Avraham Shlonsky to more recent versions by e.g. Avraham Oz, Dan Almagor, Dan Miron, Shimon Sandbank, and Dori Parnes. Shakespeare was also translated into other Jewish languages in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, chiefly Yiddish but additionally Judeo-Spanish and occasionally other languages such as Judeo-Persian. Shakespeare has occupied a similarly prominent position on the Jewish stage: his plays have been a key feature of the Hebrew theatre from its beginnings in the early twentieth century until the present day, and have likewise been a staple element of the Yiddish stage in North America (as examined in Joel Berkowitz’ important 2002 monograph Shakespeare on the American Yiddish Stage), Europe, the Soviet Union, and elsewhere, as well as the inspiration for adaptations such as Jacob Gordin’s 1898 Mirele Efros (‘The Jewish Queen Lear’), which was the basis for the popular 1939 film of the same name. Jewish Shakespeare criticism spans more than two centuries, beginning with early nineteenth-century Jewish Enlightenment writings and extending to recent Israeli scholarly work, the latter reflected in Avraham Oz’s landmark 1998 edited volume Strands Afar Remote.

Shakespeare and the Jews aims to celebrate this rich legacy by addressing the historical perspectives and current key narratives surrounding it. The conference will be interdisciplinary and will explore issues relating to Shakespeare and the Jews from numerous perspectives, including those of literary criticism, translation studies, history, drama, and cultural studies. The conference aims to bring together a diverse range of researchers and to serve as a unique and fruitful platform for discussion and exchange on Shakespeare and the Jews between established scholars and early career researchers, as well as to help shape the future research agenda on the topic. The conference will include a keynote address by Professor Avraham Oz (University of Haifa) and will coincide with a UCL student-staff performance of Isaac Salkinson’s Ram and Jael, the first Hebrew translation of Romeo and Juliet (Vienna, 1878), which conference participants will be invited to attend.

Proposals are invited for papers of approximately 20 minutes on themes including (but not limited to) the following:

  • Attitudes to Jews and Judaism in Elizabethan and Jacobean England
  • Jewish themes and elements in Shakespeare’s plays
  • Biblical motifs and elements in Shakespeare’s plays
  • Representations of, and changing historical attitudes to, the figure of Shylock
  • The Jewish reception of Shakespeare
  • Shakespeare and antisemitism
  • The representation of Jews in global Shakespeare translations
  • The reception of Shakespeare in Israel
  • Teaching Shakespeare in Israel
  • Historical and contemporary Hebrew translations and adaptations of Shakespeare
  • Translations and adaptations of Shakespeare into Yiddish, Judeo-Spanish, and other Jewish languages
  • Shakespeare on the Hebrew and Yiddish stages
  • Post-Holocaust interpretations of Shakespeare
  • Jewish themes in Shakespearean performances and film adaptations
  • Shakespeare in Yiddish and Israeli cinema
  • Jewish and Israeli contributions to Shakespeare criticism

The conference committee will be able to offer a small number of bursaries to assist with travel and accommodation costs for PhD students.

Please submit abstracts (300 words) together with a brief CV (and, for PhD students, indication of whether you would like to be considered for a bursary) by 15 September 2016 to Lily Kahn (l.kahn@ucl.ac.uk).

Organizing Committee:

Adriana X. Jacobs (University of Oxford), Lily Kahn (UCL), Aneta Mancewicz (Kingston University), Márta Minier (University of South Wales), Christopher Stamatakis (UCL), and Ada Rapoport-Albert (UCL)

EDITORS:

Dr hab. Prof. UP Sławomir Kapralski, Uniwersytet Pedagogiczny w Krakowie and Professor Larry Ray, SSPSSR, University of Kent, UK

The politics of Holocaust memory in Poland has for many decades been an arena of dispute. The German occupation in Poland destroyed the largest pre-War Jewish population in the world and the Germans further placed six extermination camps in occupied Polish territory. While post-War Poland inevitably became a major site of Holocaust memory and commemoration this has always been entangled with contemporary Polish and international politics, both in the Communist and post-Communist periods. This Special Issue of the journal invites contributions on any aspect of disputed Holocaust memory in Poland. Topics might include (but are not limited to):

  • Communist era memory and commemoration of the Holocaust
  • The disputes about the Auschwitz Museum as a site of commemoration
  • Disputes in post-Communist commemoration, such as the Jedwabne controversy
  • Contemporary official historical politics in Poland and its impact on the representation of the Holocaust
  • Counter-memories and the construction of Polish history from abroad for example Israeli youth voyages to Poland
  • The dispute over Poles as rescuers vs Poles as betrayers
  • Beyond the generation of survivors? How is the politics of Holocaust memory transformed by the passing of the survivor generation?
  • Holocaust memory on the local level: local commemorations and practices of remembrance
  • The Holocaust in contemporary Polish cinema, theatre, fine arts, and popular culture
  • Contemporary initiatives in the field of Holocaust education
  • Polish encounters with the globalized Holocaust discourse

 

A typical article will contain 8,000–12,000 words including endnotes.

Please submit to the Special Issue editors an abstract of about 100 words by July 1st 2016

Each manuscript should have 3-6 keywords

For complete instructions on submitting a manuscript, please click here or visit the journal website http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/rhos20#.VznO2Y-cHIU

Final date for submission June 30th 2017

If you have any queries or wish to discuss this Call, please contact the Special Issue Editors:

Larry Ray l.j.ray@kent.ac.uk

Sławomir Kapralski Kapral@up.krakow.pl

 

 

Please find attached the programme for the forthcoming conference taking place at the Clarendon Institute on 20-21 June.

All are welcome, but please pre-register  via this e-mail address and also kindly indicate whether you would like a sandwich lunch (for which there will be a £5 charge, payable on the day[s] you attend.)   sue.forteath@ochjs.ac.uk 

Conference Programme

Monday 20 June
SECOND TEMPLE PERIOD TO LATE ANTIQUITY

9.15am   Opening remarks:
Alison Salvesen and Sarah Pearce

9.30-10.15am   Hugh Williamson

Egypt in the Book of Isaiah

10.15-11am   Reinhard Kratz

Arameans and Judaeans: Ethnography and Identity at Elephantine

11-11.30am Coffee Break  

11.30-12.15pm  Noah Hacham

Between Jews and Non-Jews: the Case of 3 Maccabees

12.15-1pm   Livia Capponi

The metaphor of the plague. The expulsion of Jews in 19 CE and the image of Jews and Egyptians under Tiberius

1-2pm   Sandwich Lunch

2-2.45pm   Willy Clarysse

Identifying Jews: the evidence of the papyri

2.45-3.30pm   Margaret Williams
The Jews of Apollinopolis Magna/Edfu – a neglected

Diaspora community in early Roman imperial Egypt

3.30-4pm    Tea break

4-4.45pm   Gregory Sterling – Keynote

The history of the Alexandrian Jewish community

4.45-5.30pm   William Horbury – Keynote
Egypt in the Jewish Risings under Trajan

5.30-6pm Concluding remarks: Dorothy Thompson

7pm Dinner for speakers at Rewley House

Tuesday 21 June
THE MEDIEVAL PERIOD

9.15am     Introduction: Miriam Frenkel

9.30-10.15am    Esther-Miriam Wagner

Language and Identity in the Cairo Genizah

10.15-11am   Yehoshua Granat

An Andalusian in Alexandria: A new look at

Yehuda Halevi’s ‘Egyptian’ poems

11-11.30am- Coffee Break

11.30-12.15pm   Marzena Zawanowska

The concept of Egypt in medieval Karaite Bible exegesis

12.15-1pm  Paul Fenton

An Andalusi poet descends to Egypt: Judah al-Harîzî’s account of his visit to its communities in 1222

1-2pm    Sandwich Lunch

2-2.45pm   Joanna Weinberg

Living in Egypt–A Maimonidean Predicament

2.45-3.30pm  Judith Olszowy-Schlanger – Keynote

Hebrew scribes and script in medieval Egypt

3.30-4.15pm   Tea Break

JEWS IN EGYPT IN THE LATER PERIOD

4.15-5pm  Dotan Arad

‘In the wilderness of their enemies’: Jewish Attitudes
towards Muslim Space in light of a 15th-Century
Genizah Letter from Egypt

5-5.30pm  Ben Williams

From Exile in Egypt to Exile in Safed – Galut in Moses Alsheikh’s Commentary on the Song of Songs

5.30-6pm  Adriana X Jacobs

Esther Raab in Cairo 

6-6.30pm Epilogue: Mark Cohen

7pm Dinner for speakers at Rewley House

Sunday 7th to Friday 12th August 2016 
Ot Azoy: our Yiddish course has expanded to be held at 5 levels, we have the addition of Yuri Vedenyapin from Harvard joining our Yiddish faculty this year to add to a compliment of some of the world’s best Yiddish teachers.
More details and to book here: https://www.jmi.org.uk/event/ot-azoy-2016/

Sunday 7th to Friday 12th August 2016 
Golden Peacock: our Yiddish Song Course is back again this August with Shura Lipovsky, Lorin Sklamberg, Karsten Troyke, Rachel Weston and with the addition of Joseph Finlay as accompanist. Immerse yourself in 6 days of Yiddish song, learning repertoire, singing in the choir, learning new insights and performing to the fellow students and the public.
More details and to book here: https://www.jmi.org.uk/event/golden-peacock-2016 

Monday 15th to Friday 19th August
Klezfest 2016: After a very successful relaunch of Klezfest last summer, this summer we are back with even more faculty. The faculty is led by Ilana Cravitz (London Klezmer Quartet) who will be joined by Alan Bern (Yiddish Summer Weimar and Brave Old World), Frank London (Klezmatics), Merlin Shepherd (Sklamberg and the Shepherds) as well as a stellar line up of some of the best UK Klezmoriim in the UK, Susi Evans, Guy Schalom, Francesca Ter-Berg with more to be announced.
More details and to book here: https://www.jmi.org.uk/event/klezfest-2016 

JR Ot Azoy Golden Peacock AD 2016.jpg

Conference Programme

(for further information please see: http://www.medici.org/the-birth-and-evolution-of-the-venetian-ghetto/)

Thursday, 5 May 2016

13:00   Registration Opens

Welcome                                        

14:00   Representative of the Office of the Mayor of Venice
14:10    Emanuela Carpani (Soprintendenza belle arti e paesaggio per Venezia e laguna)
14:20   Paolo Gnignati (Comunità Ebraica, Venezia)
14:30    Giuseppe Veltri (Maimonides Centre for Advanced Studies, Hamburg)

Introduction

14:40    Alessio Assonitis (The Medici Archive Project, Florence)

Introductory Lecture

14:55    Piergabriele Mancuso (The Eugene Grant Research Program on Jewish History and Culture in Early Modern Europe —The Medici Archive Project) – The Ghetto of Venice and the Making of Early Modern Jewry.

Panel One: The Ghetto in its Historical Dimension                                 

Chair: Simon Levis Sullam (Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia)
15:40   Giacomo Corazzol (Tel Aviv University) – The Prehistory of the Venetian Ghetto in the Eyes of a Cretan Jew: Venice, 1509
16:05
   Piercesare Ioly Zorattini (Università degli Studi di Udine) – Il Ghetto e il S. Uffizio di Venezia: una storia di lunga durata (secc. XVI-XVIII)
16:30
   Zrinka Podhraški Čizmek and Naida Mihal Brandl (University of Split/University of Zagreb) – Mercanti ebrei fra le due sponde dell’Adriatico nel XVIII secolo

16:55   Coffee Break

17:25   Stefania Silvestri (The John Rylands Library – University of Manchester) – Jewish Women from Venice: A Portrayal through the Study of their Ketubbot
17:50
   Alessandro Guetta (Institut national des langues et civilisations orientales, Paris) – Italian Citizens of Jewish Faith: The Italian texts of David de Pomi and Leone Modena
18:15
    Panel One Closes

18:30   Day One Closes

  Friday, 6 May 2016

Panel Two: The Architectures of the Venetian Ghetto                            

Chair: Donatella Calabi (Università Iuav di Venezia)
9:00    Elisa Bastianello (Independent Scholar) – Il Ghetto: aperture urbane e sociali
9:25
    Gianmario Guidarelli (Università degli Studi di Padova) – Le sinagoghe del Ghetto di Venezia nel contesto della architettura del Rinascimento veneziano
9:50
    Alessandra Ferrighi (Università Iuav di Venezia) – Dopo il Ghetto. La nuova contrada Riunione e le trasformazioni nella prima metà dell’Ottocento
10:15
    Stefano Zaggia (Università degli Studi di Padova) – Dalle contrade ebraiche ai ghetti nelle città della Repubblica di Venezia (secc. XV-XVI)
10:40
   Panel Two Closes

10:45   Coffee Break

Panel Three: The Venetian Ghetto and its Philosophical Legacy         

Chair: Giuseppe Veltri (Director, Maimonides Centre for Advanced Studies, Hamburg)
11:15     Abraham Melamed (University of Haifa) – When did Judaism Become a Religion? The Case of Simone Luzzatto
11:40
    Anna Lissa (Maimonides Centre for Advanced Studies) – Scepticism and Politics in Simone Luzzatto’s Works
12:05
   Evelien Chayes (CNRS – IRHT, Paris) – Christians Studying in the Venetian Ghetto: Talmud and Scepticism 1630-1640
12:30
   Michela Torbidoni (Maimonides Centre for Advanced Studies) – L’esercizio serio-giocoso del rabbino Simone Luzzatto: un dibattito scettico sull’anima

12:55   Panel Three Closes

13:00   Lunch Break

Panel Four: Arts and Theatre in the Venetian Ghetto                             

Chair: Shaul Bassi (Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia)
14:45    Rafael D. Arnold (Universität Rostock) – Contrasting Sepulchral Traditions in Venice (Ashkenazic and Sephardic)
15:10
    Erith Jaffe-Berg (University of California, Riverside) – The Ghetto and Performance Making in Venice and Mantua in the Early Modern Period
15:35
   Michele Osherow (University of Maryland, Baltimore County) – The Problem of Conversion in Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice
16:00
  Elizabeth Rich (Independent Scholar) – Moisè da Castellazzo, the Consiglio dei Dieci and Copyright Privileges: How a Jewish artist protected his creation of a picture-Bible in 1521

16:30   Panel Four Closes

16:35   Closing Remarks & Final Discussion

17:00   Drinks Reception                                                                                                           

18:00  End of Conference

Download Conference Program Here.

Please note, registration is required please write to conference@medici.org

Organised by the Holocaust Research Centre, Royal Holloway, University of London

Our colleague David Cesarani (1956-2015) was a leading historian of the Holocaust and of Anglo-Jewry, and a public intellectual concerned with the importance of historical understanding. The aim of this conference is to celebrate his work through presenting and debating leading and new research in these areas, and by holding a large public engagement event on recent work on the Holocaust and its legacy.

We seek proposals for 20-minute presentations on the topics that were of interest to Professor Cesarani, namely: Holocaust history and memory; Zionism and anti-Zionism; and the history of Anglo-Jewry. Specific topics might include, but are not restricted to: the unfolding of the “Final Solution”; Britain and the Holocaust; the Holocaust in Hungary; Holocaust consciousness in Britain, the US, and Europe; British attitudes towards Zionism before, during and after World War II; British Mandate Palestine; antisemitism as an intellectual tradition and political movement.

Papers should be original research and not solely assessments of Professor Cesarani’s work. Please send proposals (max. 300 words) to Imogen Dalziel, Administrator of the Holocaust Research Centre, at imogen.dalziel.2013@live.rhul.ac.uk by Friday 25 June 2016. All applicants will be informed of the outcome of their submission by Friday 22 July 2016.

The conference will be held in central London (venue TBC), the second half of day two at the Imperial War Museum, where there will be a discussion of Professor Cesarani’s contribution to Holocaust Studies and Holocaust consciousness in Britain that will be open to the public. There is a nominal registration fee of £10. Travel bursaries may be available for PhD students and early-career scholars whose institutions cannot cover their travel to London.

The conference will explore the history of family and childhood, in conjunction with that of religion, religious conflict and the confessional state. It will focus on the experiences of children and young people in minority groups (of any religion) in different contexts throughout the early modern world from the Reformation to the Enlightenment, and their textual mediation.  Comparing the strategies, experiences and perceptions of different groups, with a focus on childhood, offers a new understanding both of early modern childhood and of the social history of religion.

Proposals for 20-minute papers are welcomed. Papers might address the following or similar themes:

  • Minority status, persecution and children’s religious practice
  • Family and confessional identity
  • Intergenerational relations
  • Education and the enforcement of religious change
  • Youthful religious dissidence
  • Gender, education and religious minorities
  • Portrayals of childhood in the literature of religious minorities
  • Childhood, youth and martyrology
  • The state, religion and the family 

Key speakers: Professor Joel Harrington, Vanderbilt University; Professor Alec Ryrie, Durham University

Convenor: Dr Lucy Underwood, University of Warwick

Proposals should include:

  • Name and affiliation (if applicable); contact details; abstract of 100 words; brief (50 words) biography of applicant
  • They should be sent to Dr Lucy Underwood by 10 April 2016 (Deadline extended from 31 March) at: childhoodreligion@gmail.com

A major international conference on ‘The Classification of Humanity: Defining and Dividing Societies in the Modern Era’ conceived by the International Consortium for Research on Antisemitism and Racism (ICRAR), of which the Pears Institute is a founding member, will be held in Haifa, Israel, 27-28 November 2016.

This is the fourth annual conference of ICRAR and will be hosted by University of Haifa’s Bucerius Institute for the Study of Contemporary German History and Society and School of History.

As with previous ICRAR conferences, the goal of this meeting is to address questions that are central to the study of antisemitism and other forms of racism. In “The Classification of Humanity” there are two separate but interrelated levels of classification which the conference seeks to explore: the first concerns classifications found in various historical objects or moments that are critical for the historical understanding of antisemitism and racism; the second level concerns classifications employed by contemporary scholars in their analyses of topics related to antisemitic and racist phenomena.

The call for papers is attached. Paper proposals of one-page should be sent to bucerius@univ.haifa.ac.il by 31 March 2016. 

 

The Judaism Panel welcomes proposals for 20-minute papers. With reference to ‘desert spirituality’ as the overall conference theme, the Judaism panel wants to counter its Christian bias and its world-renouncing understanding of asceticism as well as point to the completely different connotations that ’desert’ has as literary imagery in Jewish religion, literature, and culture after two millennia of exile.

Up against Jewish history, ‘desert’ signifies inter alia complex experiences in the past as well as visions of what the future should – or more likely, should not – look like. Accordingly, the Judaism panel calls for papers willing to reflect on

  • what the literary imagery of ‘desert’ may mean in a Jewish context?
  • how past ‘desert’ experiences have contributed to the uniqueness of Jewish religion, literature, and culture, its practices, theologies, and ethics?
  • why past ‘desert’ experiences have convinced some Jews to invest in diasporic Judaism in spite of the possibility since 1948 for Jews to live in a Jewish nation-state?
  • whether world-renouncing practices of asceticism have ever been or could be compatible with past, present or future versions of Jewish religion?

Please send proposals of no more than 300 words to the panel convener, Dr. Marianne Schleicher no later than 18 April 2016.
For further information concerning this panel, please, contact the panel convener.

For further information concerning the overall conference, please, see the conference website: http://isrlc.org

On the 120th anniversary of the discovery of the Genizah manuscripts of Ben Sira, this conference will consider the particular contributions of the Hebrew manuscripts of Ben Sira, in connection with the language and transmission of the book. Despite the existence of six versions in the Genizah as well as the scroll from Masada and two tiny fragments from Qumran, the characteristics of each Hebrew witness have been neglected and their significance for the history of Hebrew, for Jewish studies and for the reception of early Jewish writings is due for consideration.

Organized by Dr James Aitken, University of Cambridge, Professor Renate Egger-Wenzel, Universität Salzburg, and Professor Stefan Reif, St John’s College, Cambridge.

Full details and bookings at: http://www.divinity.cam.ac.uk/research/confseminars/conferences/

Or http://tinyurl.com/hrv2gcc

Confirmed Keynote Speakers:

Professor Dan Stone, Royal Holloway, University of London (19th July)
Professor Wulf Kansteiner, Binghamton University, USA (20th July)
Professor Aleida Assmann, University of Konstanz, Germany (20th July).

 

In the mid- to late-1970s, the afterlife of the Nazi extermination of Europe’s Jews entered into a new phase. Research has shown that there was never ‘silence’ per se around the genocide of the Jews in the immediate post-war decades, and notable developments did occur during the 1940s, 50s, and 60s. Yet it was in the 1970s that much greater strides were made, thanks in part to the international emergence of “the Holocaust” as a collective conception. By no means did this bring resolution or consensus, nor did it necessarily spur immediate confrontation with this dark past.

This conference is concerned specifically with what has happened in the ensuing decades since the mid- to late-1970s. Ours is the generation in which Holocaust memory has grown exponentially, expanding and extending at such a rate that it not only permeates Western culture and society, but now has global proportions. Nor is there any indication of this slowing down any time soon; instead, increased concern at the passing of survivors has given but further impetus to attempts to teach, learn, and remember the Holocaust, whilst its continued representation raises ongoing interest in its abstraction and appropriation.

We are inviting proposals which seek to explore and examine the development of Holocaust history and memory over the past four decades. We are especially interested in:

  • The social, political and cultural memories of the Holocaust that have emerged over the past generation.
  • What trajectories have these followed, how and why?
  • What structural forces and individual agencies have driven these memories, and to what ends?
  • Given that Holocaust memory has become a dimension of our contemporary condition, how have the fortunes of Holocaust history and remembrance interfaced and intersected with major historical events like the cessation of the Cold War, transnational trends such as Europeanisation and globalisation, and transcultural phenomena like human rights?
  • To what extent have our social, political and cultural memories of the Holocaust allowed or prevented us from confronting other genocides and instances of man-made atrocity?
  • And finally how do we begin to historicize the explosion of Holocaust memory, to determine what influence new threats and challenges – from climate change to the “war on terror” – exert on how we think and use the Holocaust?

For more information and submission of paper proposals please see http://www.holocausteducation.org.uk/courses-events/bahs-conference-2016-presence-holocaust-society-politics-culture/

Venue: University of Leeds, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds LS2 9JT

http://www.fine-art.leeds.ac.uk/events/jewish-presences-and-presents-in-the-museum-jewish-museologies-and-the-politics-of-display/

As political and social upheavals in and beyond Europe are transforming the meanings of cultural diversity and notions of heritage, a two-day international symposium will explore the critical debates about Jewish museums, museologies and Jewish presences in non-Jewish museums.

Organised by the Centre for Jewish Studies, this conference takes place on 13 & 14 March 2016 at the University of Leeds. It will include panels on current museum developments in and beyond Europe, including new and resurgent museums previously beyond the ‘Iron Curtain’.

The event will host two roundtables on international and UK debates around the role and future of Jewish museums and Jewish presences in the museum sphere. Themes discussed and debated will include Europe and migration/mobility; memory and trauma; the role of the object in the virtual age; the politics of display; multiple and layered identities; the role of visitors and communities.

Invited speakers include:

Felicitas Heimann-Jelinek, former chief curator at the Jewish Museum, Vienna; and Director of the professional training programme Keter: Understanding and Caring for Judaica Collections in Ukrainian Museums

Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett, Programme Director of the Core Exhibition for POLIN, the Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw

Cilly Kugelmann, programme director and vice director of the Jewish Museum Berlin

Joanne Rosenthal, Curator, Exhibitions and Projects at the Jewish Museum London

The event will be of interest to museum professionals, museum studies students of all levels, heritage groups and museum visitors.

The conference costs £40 (£20 unwaged/student) for both days or £20 (£10 unwaged/student) for one-day registration. There is no registration cost for students of the University of Leeds.

Register on http://store.leeds.ac.uk/browse/extra_info.asp?compid=1&modid=2&catid=138&prodid=650  

Enquiries: email Eva Frojmovic clsef@leeds.ac.uk

This event is supported by an EAJS (European Association for Jewish Studies) conference grant.

Monday 27–Wednesday 29 June 2016 at The John Rylands Library, 150 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 3EH

Call for Papers – Extended Deadline

The John Rylands Research Institute invites paper proposals for its upcoming conference on the Hebrew and Jewish collections of The John Rylands Library.

The John Rylands Library preserves one of the world’s valuable collections of Hebrew and Jewish manuscripts, archives and printed books. The holdings span Septuagint fragments to the papers of Moses Gaster and Samuel Alexander. The Rylands Genizah and rich collections of medieval manuscript codices and early printed books are among the strengths of the collection, making The John Rylands Library an important centre for the study of Judaism from the ancient world to the twentieth century. 

The aim of this conference is to convene scholars, curators and students researching areas represented in the Library’s Hebrew and Jewish collections, including (but not limited to): the Cairo Genizah; medieval Hebrew manuscript codices; early printed Hebrew books; Samaritan manuscripts; and, the collections of Moses Gaster. It will take place as part of a programme of activities at the John Rylands Research Institute that aim to facilitate the study of the Library’s Hebrew and Jewish holdings. This includes the 2015-2018 externally-funded project to catalogue the Hebrew manuscripts and two ongoing projects on the Gaster collections.

Studies of The John Rylands’ collections, of the collections of related Hebraica and Judaica libraries, and of resources and methods that facilitate such research will be particularly welcome. The expectation is that the conference will result in an edited collection of essays.

Due to significant interest, the submission deadline for paper proposals has been extended to 17:00 GMT on 26 February 2016. The conference organizing team will be able to facilitate access to further information on our holdings and support the development of your paper proposal. Full details of how to submit a proposal can be found online at: http://www.jrri.manchester.ac.uk/connect/events/conferences/institute-conference-2016/

This event is supported by the European Association of Jewish Studies’ Conference Grant Programme in European Jewish Studies.

For further information and application please see http://katz.sas.upenn.edu/shaking-foundations.

Shaking Foundations flyer.jpg

Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies in collaboration with the Berman Center, Lehigh University

Oxford Summer Institute on Modern and Contemporary Judaism: Academic Jewish Studies and Judaism: Reciprocal Influences

27 June to 4 July 2016

Call for applications

The third annual Oxford Summer Institute on Modern and Contemporary Judaism (OSI-MCJ) will address ‘Academic Jewish Studies and Judaism: Reciprocal Influences’, a subject arising from some of the insightful research presented at the two initial OSI-MCJ gatherings.

During the first stages in the emergence of the scientific study of Judaism in the nineteenth century, many of the key figures in the efforts to reform or adjust Jewish religious practice and theology to modern life were also anchors of the scientific community dedicated to the critical study of Judaism. These individuals utilised their scholarly findings to support their novel religious approaches, but as academic Jewish studies moved beyond the theological seminaries into secular universities the lines between living religion and critical study became more pronounced. It would appear, however, that there has arisen in more recent years a new and more complex reciprocity which can be described as a conversation between parallel but separate domains. The third OSI-MCJ is designed to explore the variety of specific ways in which this reciprocity is evolving and the implications of this dynamic both for academic Jewish studies and for contemporary Jewish religious life and theology.

Oxford Summer Institutes involve a period of intense study in the setting of an advanced seminar. A core group of senior scholars of Jewish religion and culture has already been invited for the 2016 OSI under the leadership of Professor Adam Ferziger (Bar Ilan) and Professor Hartley Lachter (Lehigh), and the Centre now invites applications from a further eight European scholars in the field at an early stage in their career (i.e. scholars who are about to complete a doctorate or have completed a doctorate since December 2010).

Up to eight European scholars will be selected to join the 2016 OSI. The Centre will cover travel and accommodation costs.

To apply, please send curriculum vitae, a research proposal relating to topic of the 2016 OSI, and two academic references to Martine Smith-Huvers (registrar@ochjs.ac.uk) by Friday 26 February 2016.

Application Form
Information for Applicants

The closing date for completed applications is: 26 February 2016.

The Centre will inform you of the result of your application by 11 March 2016.

Refugee Conference Call for Papers

THE MORNING SESSION WILL BE DEVOTED TO PAPERS WITH AN HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE  

THE AFTERNOON SESSION WILL BE DEVOTED TO PAPERS EXAMINING CONTEMPORARY ISSUES

A) ‘Welcome to Britain? ‘  The public perception of refugees 1930s and 40’s / 2016

Sub headings:

  • How welcoming were we / are we as a nation ?
  • ​ The distinction made between ‘deserving’ versus ‘non-deserving’ refugees
  • ​What was done to welcome refugees, and not only Kinder, and what is being done now to welcome refugees
  • The legacy of previous waves of Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe at the turn of the 20th century?
  •  Negative versus positive perceptions, and what immigrants have to offer

B) Humanitarian versus political concerns

Sub headings:

  • The moral imperative and preserving the status quo…Responding to the arguments
    • ‘we have enough foreigners here, they may undermine security, we can’t afford to help, pressures on public services.’
    • ‘Letting in more refugees does not solve the problem….
    • winning the war was the “solution” in the 1930’s, 40’s. The argument now is that letting in more refugees encourages more ​​people smugglers.​

C) The power of propaganda, then and now, in influencing public attitudes

D) Could Britain have done more (past) and could Britain do more (present)

  • ‘We have done enough/ more than other countries’

Submissions should be no more than 200 words
The deadline for these is 28 February 2016

For enquiries and submissions please contact the organisers:
Dr Susan Cohen drsusancohen@gmail.com or Ms Lesley Urbach lcurbach@aol.com

www.rememberingeleanorrathbone.wordpress.com

Project Leaders:
Judith Olszowy-Schlanger (Paris)
César Merchán-Hamann (OCHJS & Bodleian Library)

 Closing date for applications: 23 March 2016

Recent years have witnessed an unprecedented interest in Hebrew manuscripts in various fields of academic Jewish studies. The development of new technologies, online accessibility of the contents of the major European Hebrew manuscript collections, and the creation of manuscript databases and programmes dedicated to the study and preservation of Jewish archives and libraries, have made the manuscripts readily available for scholarly investigation. This access to information has given a new impetus to the return to primary sources in historical research and has encouraged new editorial projects on medieval Hebrew texts.

Together with this renewed dynamism of historical and textual studies, there is a growing awareness of the need to understand the material and cognitive aspects involved in manuscript production and circulation. Students and scholars need to acquire the tools to approach the handwritten medieval sources in their specificity and complexity.

The Summer Workshop in Oxford provides a comprehensive and specialised programme in the fields of Hebrew codicology, palaeography, diplomatics, art history, history of the book and collections, and conservation and digital humanities as applied to Hebrew manuscripts. Several specialists will provide in-depth methodological introduction and research guidance for these fields of Hebrew manuscript studies. The workshop is organised in collaboration with the Bodleian Library, which will allow access to original manuscripts in situ for the teaching sessions. Lecturers will include Professor Malachi Beit-Arié, Professor Judith Olszowy-Schlanger and Dr. César Merchán-Hamann.

Suitably qualified scholars and students are invited to apply. Space for the Workshop is limited and early application is advised. Selection of participants will be on the basis of the potential benefit to their studies from attending the Workshop.

Workshop fee: £75

Applications should reach the Centre
by 23 March 2016.

Applicants will be informed on 15 April 2016 whether their application has been successful and the Workshop fee will be due for payment by 30 April 2016.

The application procedure may be found here and the application form may be downloaded here.

For more information contact:
Prof. Judith Olszowy-Schlanger (judith.schlanger@ephe.sorbonne.fr)
Dr. César Merchán-Hamann (cesar.merchan-hamann@bodleian.ox.ac.uk)

For any other queries contact:
Martine Smith-Huvers (registrar@ochjs.ac.uk)

This conference is hosted by the British Association for Jewish Studies, in cooperation with the School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion and the College of Arts and Law of the University of Birmingham.

The written word as manifested in a spectrum from classical Jewish texts to contemporary literature, alongside texts unearthed in locations including desert caves, an island in the Nile, a Cairo synagogue or the Warsaw ghetto, is the lifeblood of a great deal of research in Jewish Studies. This conference invites reflection on textuality from a variety of perspectives, ranging from the material aspects of texts, including the growing role of digital humanities in the field, to scribal culture and consciousness, textual plurality, composition, reworking, form and genre, reception, classification and inter-relationships between textual worlds and corpora. In addition, speakers may wish to investigate the oral and social aspects of texts and textuality, such as performance, memory, and power. The keynote speaker is Prof. Judy Newman, University of Toronto.

We welcome contributions from all periods and regions. As ever, the annual conference also welcomes papers that fall outside of the conference theme, and we encourage colleagues to submit abstract proposals for such papers.

In addition to the academic programme, on Sunday afternoon the conference will include an optional guided tour of the University’s Art Gallery, the Barber Institute of Fine Arts (http://barber.org.uk/), which is home to one of the finest small collections of European Art in the UK, and an opportunity to visit the University’s Special Collections housed at the Edward Cadbury Research Library (http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/facilities/cadbury/index.aspx). The collection, which received a lot of international press coverage for an early Qur’an manuscript this year, contains material of interest to members of the Association including:

  • Russian Jewish Material from the late 19th – early 20th centuries
  • The Mingana Collection of Middle Eastern Manuscripts
  • The archive of the Save the Children Fund 1919-2006
  • The papers of the late historian John Grenville who was Professor of Modern History at Birmingham from 1969-1994.
  • Enquiries and abstracts of max. 250 words should be sent by 15th February 2016 to colcal-c-bajs2016@adf.bham.ac.uk

Panel Proposals are also accepted – the lead proposer should submit abstracts (250 words each) for all papers proposed for panels.

Registration Opens in March 2016.

Supported by a grant from the European Association for Jewish Studies

Confirmed speakers:

  • Felicitas Heimann-Jelinek (Association of European Jewish Museums, Amsterdam/Vienna)
  • Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett (Museum of the History of Polish Jews, Warsaw)
  • Cilly Kugelman (Jewish Museum, Berlin)

A two-day international symposium is to explore the critical debates about Jewish museologies in the light of

a) Jewish institutions and
b) Jewish presences in non-Jewish museums (city museums, national museums, specialist museums);

The conference will include panels on current museum developments in Germany, Central-Eastern Europe, Western Europe (continental), UK/Ireland. The meeting will include a workshop on current local/grassroots archival and heritage collecting and research, including community engagement.

In the wake of the opening of the Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw, the first major museum of Jewish history in an East-Central European capital in over a century, this conference aims to reassess the diversity of Jewish museologies in post-WWII Europe, as well as in the context the UK/Ireland, as developments are taking place in Leeds, Manchester and elsewhere. These developments, decentralised as they are, raise questions about what Jewish museology should be and can be: a museology of celebration or commemoration? A history lesson or an encounter with art and aesthetics?

In addition, the conference will address specific issues relating to Jewish museums and Jewish history in museums in the UK and Ireland in a European context.

As debates on the musealisation of Jewish history / culture proliferate, this conference will engage international curators and scholars to address some of the following questions:

  • Are there commonalities among Jewish museums in Europe?
  • What are these museums and exhibitions trying to achieve?
  • How do they construct and involve their stakeholders?
  • How do they engage with the political discourses that shape their societies?
  • Is a dividing line emerging between museums in countries directly affected by the Holocaust and others not directly affected?
  • What research is needed, and has become possible as archival resources become available and laws change?
  • With new challenges arising in living in a Europe increasingly divided about its asylum policies and vulnerable to extremist violence, what museological reorientations may be needed? 

Please propose a topic and provide an abstract for a 20 minute paper by email to Eva Frojmovic at clsef@leeds.ac.uk 

Deadline: 15 January 2016. Subject heading: Jewish Museologies.

Over the course of multiple centuries prior to the modern era, Jewish culture was shaped in various ways by the concept of ‘exile’ and by the practical circumstances that corresponded to this concept.  This conference aims to explore ways in which inherited Jewish culture has been reshaped and affected by the presence of non-exilic or anti-exilic dynamics in more recent and contemporary Jewish history.

Historically, the Jewish concept of exile entailed the idea of living in a world without an active geographical center.  While Jerusalem and the Land of Israel played a role of such a center in terms of the ancient past and the envisioned messianic future, the present world was understood as one in which, broadly speaking, Jews and Jewish culture possess no geographical center.  That is to say, while the Land of Israel constituted a present liturgical focus and a present hope for messianic return, there was not a prominent sense of living ‘outside of’ a geographical center that existed elsewhere in the world.  From this perspective, the establishment of the State of Israel marked a significant change: now, a geographic location had arisen that laid claim to a new role of a special ‘center’ for Jewish culture and identity.  

This conference thus asks: how was Jewish culture, previously predicated on a conscious absence of an active geographical center, affected by this emergence of this influential new state of affairs?  How did the cultural inheritance of Jewish identity as exilic/diasporic continue to shape the ways in which Jews, both in the State of Israel and in other countries, conceived of Jewishness?

In exploring this question, the conference also seeks to explore ways in which Jewish exilic cultural identity was reshaped and affected by additional aspects of modernity other than the establishment of State of Israel.  For instance, if another key element of Jewish understandings of exile involved political exclusion and subservience, in what ways did the experience of life in America, with its promise of liberty, citizenship, and freedom of religion, reshape Jewish conceptions of ‘being in exile’?  Did the American experiment already functionally constitute an ‘end of exile’ or ‘negation of exile’ even prior to the rise of Zionism?  Did life in America cause just a profound a reshaping of Jewish exilic identity as the establishment of the State of Israel?  If so, can one trace a similar reshaping of exilic/diasporic identity in other liberal-democratic countries such as France and the United Kingdom?

In what ways does the tension between the exilic cultural inheritance and these modern non-exilic elements manifest itself?  How does this tension impact political, ethical, literary, artistic, or religious patterns among Jews today?  How do the dynamics of ‘belonging’ or ‘non-belonging’ in other countries affect the attitudes of Jews towards the reality and/or imagined fantasy of the State of Israel?  What are the challenges involved in trying to understand past orientations from the very different circumstances of the present?  Do notions of center, diaspora, and exile mean something very different in Jewish culture today than they meant 250 years ago?  Likewise, do they mean something different today than they meant 100, 50, or even 10 years ago?  Quite apart from its desirability or non-desirability, is it even possible to remove the notion of ‘exile’ from Jewish culture?

The conference will be held at Cambridge University May 2-4, 2016. Room and board will be provided. Travel assistance will not be available. Please send abstracts of 500 words by December 15, 2015 to the conference organizers:

Yaron Peleg: yp240@cam.ac.uk

or

Daniel Weiss: dhw27@cam.ac.uk

Monday 27–Wednesday 29 June 2016 at The John Rylands Library150 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 3EH

Call for Papers

The John Rylands Research Institute invites paper proposals for its upcoming 2016 conference on the Hebrew and Jewish collections of The John Rylands Library.

The John Rylands Library preserves one of the world’s valuable collections of Hebrew and Jewish manuscripts, archives and printed books. The holdings span Septuagint fragments to the papers of Moses Gaster and Samuel Alexander. The Rylands Genizah and rich collections of medieval manuscript codices and early printed books are among the strengths of the collection, making The John Rylands Library an important centre for the study of Judaism from the ancient world to the twentieth century.

The aim of this conference is to convene scholars, curators and students researching areas represented in the Library’s Hebrew and Jewish collections, including (but not limited to): the Cairo Genizah; medieval Hebrew manuscript codices; early printed Hebrew books; Samaritan manuscripts; and, the collections of Moses Gaster. It will take place as part of a programme of activities at the John Rylands Research Institute that aim to facilitate the study of the Library’s Hebrew and Jewish holdings. This includes the 2015-2018 externally-funded project to catalogue the Hebrew manuscripts and two ongoing projects on the Gaster collections.

Studies of The John Rylands’ collections, of related Hebraica and Judaica libraries, and of resources and methods that facilitate such research will be particularly welcome. The expectation is that the conference will result in an edited collection of essays.

Paper proposals are due by 17:00 GMT on 29 January 2016. Full details of how to submit a proposal can be found online at: http://www.jrri.manchester.ac.uk/conference-2016/

This event is supported by the European Association of Jewish Studies’ Conference Grant Programme in European Jewish Studies.

On Sunday, November 22, 2015, the Center for Research in the Arts,

Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH), in collaboration with St John’s

College Cambridge and the Jewish Historical Society of England shall be

hosting the international conference:

Solomon Schechter’s Life and Legacy: A Jewish Scholar in Victorian

England (1882–1901).

It is the second of a pair of conferences, organised in cooperation with

the Herbert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University

of Pennsylvania on the occasion of the centenary of Schechter’s death

(see http://schechterlegacy.com/). The American conference, held last

Spring at the National Museum of American Jewish History, was devoted to

aspects of Schechter’s life and work in the United States. The Cambridge

conference will focus on Schechter’s life in England, and especially on

his work as a scholar. Attendance is free of charge, but space is

limited and those willing to attend are requested to register in

advance. The conference programme and further details may be found here:

http://www.crassh.cam.ac.uk/events/26067

Institute of Jewish Studies (University of Antwerp)
Center for European Philosophy (University of Antwerp)

January, 20–22, 2016, Antwerp

Abstract submission deadline: 20/09/2015

One cannot effectively approach Emmanuel Levinas’s philosophical works without recognizing the importance modern literature plays in his writings. From Baudelaire to Dostojevski, from Blanchot to Celan, and from Kafka to Grossman, the references to major modern and contemporary writers are manifest throughout Levinas’s reflections. Whether as a source of inspiration or as metaphoric expression of his thoughts, these references mark a constitutive element of the articulation and development of his own philosophy. This is all the more astonishing given that Levinas has many reasons to distrust the ambivalences of literary works. Indeed, his entire philosophy intends to overcome the tragic model (with its origins in Aristotle) so as to understand being; moreover, he rejects the idea that mimetic representation constitutes a modality for adequate description of the human condition. Levinas states that the meaning of the ethical commandment exceeds all metaphoric and poetic expression, and, at crucial moments in his philosophy, he quotes Talmudic verses as if they are philosophical arguments.

It would seem that Levinas is, in his own way, challenging the Western concept of literature. It may be that he agrees with Jacques Derrida’s idea of the Biblical origin of this concept, yet questions remain as to how Levinas understands this idea and how his philosophy transforms the concept of literature. Answering these key questions will be the general aim of a three-day conference to be held at the Institute for Jewish Studies in collaboration with the Center for European Philosophy.

Special attention will be given to the poems, novel fragments, and reflections on metaphor and literature in the recently published volumes of the Oeuvres Complètes.

Call for papers

The organizing committee welcomes submissions that address the role and the meaning of literature as it can be discovered in or derived from Levinas’s philosophy.

Proposals may address themes such as the following:

  • What is the place of literature in Levinas’s philosophy?
  • How does Levinas read a specific literary work or writer?
  • What is the concept of literature that Levinas implicitly addresses?
  • How does the ethical commandment, so central in his philosophy, relate to literature?
  • How do the Talmudic references in his texts contribute to a specific (Western?) understanding of literature?

Please submit your abstract, in either French or English, of approximately 500 words (including the paper’s title, the author’s name, institutional affiliation, mailing address, and email address) together with a short bio-bibliography to ijs@uantwerpen.be BEFORE 20/09/2015. Notification of acceptance will be given by 20/10/2015.

Regular fee: 40 € (includes reception, two lunches, coffee breaks and conference map)
Student fee: 30 €
Conference dinner: 40 €

Further information about the conference available on the site: www.uantwerpen.be/ijs

Organizing committee: Prof. dr. Vivian Liska (Institute of Jewish Studies, University of Antwerp), Prof. dr. Arthur Cools (Center for European Philosophy, University of Antwerp), Dr. Michaël de Saint-Cheron (Histara/Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Paris 3), Prof. dr. Luc Anckaert (KU Leuven)

Scientific committee : Prof. dr. Vivian Liska (Institute of Jewish Studies, University of Antwerp), Prof. dr. Arthur Cools (Center for European Philosophy, University of Antwerp), Dr. Michaël de Saint-Cheron (Histara/Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Paris 3), Prof. dr. Luc Anckaert (KU Leuven), Prof. dr. Eric Hoppenot (ESPE, Université Paris-Sorbonne), Prof. dr. Johan van der Walt (Université de Luxembourg)

We are pleased to announce that registration for the forthcoming international conference to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the opening of the Parkes Library at the University of Southampton is now open.

2015 marks the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Parkes Library at the University of Southampton, the catalyst for the establishment of the unique Parkes Institute for the study of Jewish/non-Jewish relations. The Institute is based on the life work of the Reverend Dr James Parkes (1896-1981), one of the most remarkable figures within twentieth century Christianity. A tireless fighter against antisemitism in all forms, including from within Christianity, he helped rescue Jewish refugees during the 1930s and campaigned for the Jews of Europe during the Holocaust. During the Second World War he helped found the Council of Christians and Jews and worked throughout his career in promoting religious tolerance and mutual respect. As part of his international campaigning, he built up the Parkes Library and associated archive which transferred to the University of Southampton in 1964 and opened in 1965. It is now one of the largest Jewish documentation centres in Europe and the only one in the world devoted specifically to Jewish/non-Jewish relations.

This three-day Jubilee Conference examines the subject of Jewish/non-Jewish relations by looking at the history of research over the last 50 years, presenting the latest research in this area, and determining future directions in the field.

If you wish to register please visit our Parkes Jubilee Conference website where you will find the registration page along with all the details of the packages available: http://www.southampton.ac.uk/parkes/jubilee/conference.page?

Registration closes on the 21st August.

Any questions or queries please contact the Conference Administration Team on Parkes@southampton.ac.uk

The grief-stricken faces at Edward’s deathbed in the Bayeux Tapestry; the ambiguous ‘ofermod’ in The Battle of Maldon; the body-crumpling anguish of the Virgin witnessing the Man of Sorrows; the mirth of the Green Knight; the apoplectic anger of the mystery plays’ Herod and the visceral visionary experiences of Margery of Kempe all testify to the ways in which the medieval world sought to express, perform, idealise and understand emotion.

Yet while such expressions of emotion are frequently encountered by medievalists working across the disciplines, defining, quantifying and analysing the purposes of emotion and its relationship to gender often proves difficult.  Are personal items placed in early Anglo Saxon graves a means for the living to let go of, or perpetuate emotion, and how are these influenced by the body in the grave?  Do different literary and historical forms lend themselves to diverse ways of expressing men’s and women’s emotion?  How does a character expressing emotion on stage or in artwork use body, gender and articulation to communicate emotion to their viewer?  Moreover, is emotion viewed differently depending on the gendered identity of the body expressing it?  Is emotion and its reception used to construct, deconstruct, challenge or confirm gender identities?

This conference seeks to explore the manifestations, performances and functions of emotion in the early to late Middle Ages, and to examine the ways in which emotion is gendered and used to construct gender identities. 

Proposals are now being accepted for 20 minute papers.  Topics to consider may include, but are not limited to:

  • Gender and emotional expression: representing and performing emotion
  • The emotional body
  • Philosophies of emotion: theory and morality
  • Emotional objects and vessels of emotion
  • Language and emotion and the languages of emotion
  • Preserving or perpetuating emotion
  • Emotions to be dealt with: repressing, curtailing, channelling, transforming
  • Forbidden emotion
  • Living through (someone else’s) emotion
  • The emotions of war and peace
  • The emotive ‘other’
  • Place and emotion
  • Queer emotion

We welcome scholars from a range of disciplines, including history, literature, art history, archaeology and drama.  A travel fund is available for postgraduate students who would otherwise be unable to attend.

Please email proposals of no more than 300 words to organiser Daisy Black at d.black@hull.ac.uk by the 7th September 2015.  All queries should also be directed to this address.  Please also include biographical information detailing your name, research area, institution and level of study (if applicable).

Further details will be available on the conference website:

www.medievalgender.co.uk

Artists, museum curators and educators are increasingly interested in devising more effective strategies of remembering painful pasts. To this end, many recent projects commemorating genocides, civil wars, dictatorships and terrorist attacks, invite audiences to actively engage in remembering and reflecting critically upon these historical events, and what they mean to contemporary societies. The term ‘performative’ best explains the active engagement that these projects demand from audiences. This term is used to describe artistic and educational projects which promote a high degree of participation, through hands-on activities and other audience engagement strategies. Furthermore, it can also denote the possible effects which these projects may have upon audiences, namely to encourage them to become agents of commemoration, to transform their relationship with the past, and to reach a position of moral and civic responsibility.

This conference, and its subsequent publication, invites academics, artists, and museum practitioners to explore the usefulness of performative strategies of engagement with painful pasts, and the impact these strategies have upon the public. We ask whether and how performative practices enable later born generations to deal with the legacies of trauma, to initiate reconciliation and to attempt forgiveness. Do performative projects motivate individuals from persecuted groups to ask for justice? Do they sharpen public awareness of democratic values, and make contemporary audiences more sensitive to discrimination and intolerance?

Coming from the field of Holocaust Studies, and having noted that performative practices are employed frequently in its commemoration, our goal is to widen our understanding of why and how ‘performativity’ appears in the memorialization of other dreadful historical events. Therefore, we are interested in projects commemorating genocides such as those in Cambodia, Rwanda, and Darfur, civil wars in South America, ethnic cleansings in former Yugoslavia, the Apartheid system in South Africa, the Soviet gulag system, the suppression under communist regimes and dictatorships, forced migration, as well as other major traumatic events in recent history. The variety of case studies from different backgrounds will help us to understand whether these methods are effective.

We welcome papers exploring artistic and educational projects that challenge the audience to contribute to social, political and civic activism and to strengthen democratic values within their societies. Examples of such projects may include spontaneous memorial acts, audience participatory projects, interactive theatre, exhibitions and artistic works that create immersive environments through the use of visual and tactile effects, and which involve a high degree of bodily engagement.

As we are particularly interested to learn more about the effectiveness of performative practices upon audiences, we encourage scholars to examine visitors’ responses which have been captured both through interviews, digital and social media, and also through the observation of various non-verbal visitor behaviours displayed during visits at memorial sites.

Central questions to consider are:

  • How do performative practices affect the visitor’s understanding of the particular event in question?
  • Do performative practices succeed in overriding the audience members’ natural feelings of being distanced from these historical events both physically, emotionally and temporally?
  • In the case of more recent traumatic events, are these practices useful in treating trauma, and in achieving justice for the victims of these events?
  • Can performative practices be used to strengthen social activism and civic responsibility?
  • In what sense are these projects innovative? In particular, how do they differ from similar performance practices from the 1970s onwards, which likewise displayed a high degree of audience participation?

The 3-day-conference will be held at the Department of Culture and Aesthetics at Stockholm University, Sweden, 15 – 17 June 2016.

Keynote lectures and paper presentations will be open to the general public, whilst special sessions are reserved for internal discussions amongst conference participants only.

Please note: we prefer subjects which have not been previously published. Accepted conference participants are strongly encouraged to submit articles for publication soon after the conference. The work for the volume will undergo several editorial processes to ensure that its focus and purpose will be achieved.

Submissions for conference papers should reach us by 24 August 2015.

Please send an abstract (400 words) and a short CV including your institutional and departmental/museum affiliation and contact details to: performative.commemoration@gmail.com

For any questions please contact the conference organizers: Tanja Schult, Department of Culture and Aesthetics Stockholm University, Sweden, tanja.schult@arthistory.su.se, and Diana Popescu, Pears Institute for the Study of Antisemitism, Birkbeck College, London, d.popescu@bbk.ac.uk.

The John Rylands Library preserves one of the world’s valuable collections of Hebrew and Jewish manuscripts and printed books. The holdings span Septuagint fragments and parchment from Qumran to the papers of Moses Gaster and Arthur Marmorstein. The Rylands Genizah and rich collections of medieval manuscript codices and early printed books are among the strengths of the collection, making the John Rylands Library an important centre for the study of Judaism from the Middle Ages to the twentieth century.

The aim of this conference is to convene scholars and students researching areas represented in the Library’s Hebrew and Jewish collections, including (but not limited to) the Cairo Genizah, medieval Hebrew manuscript codices, early printed Hebrew books, Samaritan manuscripts and the collections of Moses Gaster. It will take place as part of a number of programmes at the John Rylands Research Institute which aim to facilitate the study of the Library’s Hebrew and Jewish holdings, including the 2015-2018 externally-funded project to catalogue the manuscript collections. Studies of the John Rylands’ collections, of related Hebraica and Judaica libraries, and of resources and methods that facilitate such research will be particularly welcome. The expectation is that the conference will result in an edited collection of essays.

Initial expressions of interest in presenting papers should be sent to jrri.conference2016@manchester.ac.uk. Full details of the conference and a formal call for papers will be issued in advance.

www.manchester.ac.uk/jrri

A conference on the theme of ‘Atheism, Scepticism and Challenges to Monotheism’ will be hosted at the University of Manchester 5-7 July under the auspices of the British Association for Jewish Studies: www.manchesterjewishstudies.org/bajs-conference/

There are now some limited funds to cover the conference fee for postgraduate students who wish to attend the conference but who are NOT planning to give a paper. Please contact Prof. Daniel Langton (daniel.r.langton@manchester.ac.uk) if this interests you.

The process would be (i) join BAJS as a student/associate member (depending on whether you are based in the UK or outside the UK), and (ii) receive the reimbursement of the student/associate member conference fee after the conference (£55/100 for two days or £30/50 for one day). Please note that the deadline for registering is Fri 29 May.

Conference registration details:

www.manchesterjewishstudies.org/bajs-registration/

BAJS membership details:

https://britishjewishstudies.org/about/join-bajs/

Please feel free to forward this call to interested fellow postgraduate students in the UK and beyond.

The conference is hosted and funded by the Postcolonial Literatures Research Group of the Open University, with additional support from the British Jewish Contemporary Culture research network, Bangor University and the University of Winchester.

Judaism can be seen as a utopian religion: the Promised Land will be an ideal place and the messiah will bring about an ideal world. Read as literature, the Bible offers one of the principal sources of utopian thought in Britain and the Western World. Judaic utopianism has become British through the cultural practice of imagining Jerusalem in these isles. It is such a conjunction of Jewish and British cultural utopias, in contemporary British-Jewish culture, which this conference proposes to explore. Challenging utopia, there is also a British-Jewish imaginative paradigm of dystopia. This has existed, in particular, since the advent of modern European antisemitism with the Dreyfus Affair and continued in the wake of the Holocaust.

Topics addressed: utopias of assimilation, Zionism, modernism, liberalism, communism, aesthetics, domesticity and romance; dystopias of antisemitism, communism, Nazism, the Holocaust and contemporary Britain, and the overlap of these utopias and dystopias.

Keynote speaker: Bryan Cheyette (University of Reading).

Confirmed speakers: Nathan Abrams (Bangor University), Finn Fordham (Royal Holloway), Ruth Gilbert (University of Winchester), James Jordan (University of Southampton), Peter Lawson (Open University), Axel Stähler (University of Kent) and Sue Vice (University of Sheffield).

The conference will be held on Thursday 23 July 2015 at the Open University London Regional Centre, Camden, and lunch will be provided. In keeping with the Open University’s founding commitment to social equality and accessible education, there will be no registration charge. It is planned to publish the proceedings.

Venue: Open University, 1-11 Hawley Crescent, Camden Town, London NW1 8NP (9.30am start).

To book: one of the limited number of places, please register for the event as soon as possible (and no later than 9 July 2015). Proposals (no more than 500 words) and a one-page CV should be sent in an email titled ‘The Promised Land Conference’ to: britishjewishcontemporarycult@gmail.com. For further information, please contact the conference organiser: p.j.lawson@open.ac.uk

Registration is now open:

www.manchesterjewishstudies.org/bajs-registration/

Please note that there are limited places for accommodation booked via the registration form and that these will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis. The deadline for registration is Friday 29 May 2015.

same_page_banner-783x394We are delighted to announce the programme for On the Same Page: Digital Approaches to Hebrew Manuscripts at King’s College London (Monday 18th May – Tuesday 19th May 2015). This two-day conference will explore the potential for the computer-assisted study of Hebrew manuscripts; discuss the intersection of Jewish Studies and Digital Humanities; and share methodologies. Amongst the topics covered will be Hebrew palaeography and codicology, the encoding and transcription of Hebrew texts, the practical and theoretical consequences of the use of digital surrogates and the visualisation of manuscript evidence and data. For the full programme and our Call for Posters, please see: http://www.digipal.eu/blog/digital-approaches/

Registration for the conference is free. As places are limited, we recommend registering at an early point to avoid disappointment. To register, please visit: https://on-the-same-page.eventbrite.com

Refreshments will be provided, but attendees should make their own arrangements for lunch.

Very much looking forward to seeing you in May,

Stewart Brookes, Debora Matos, Andrea Schatz and Peter Stokes

Organised by the Departments of Digital Humanities and Theology & Religious Studies (Jewish Studies)
Co-sponsor: Centre for Late Antique & Medieval Studies (CLAMS), King’s College London. With thanks to the Free Library of Philadelphia Rare Book Department for permission to use the image from Lewis O 140 (The Masoretic Bible of Portugal). Photograph courtesy of Débora Matos.

For further information, to submit proposals and to register for the conference, please go to http://www.manchesterjewishstudies.org/bajs-conference/.

BAJS-2015-poster

Date: 12 & 13 June 2015; Venue: SOAS, University of London Brunei Gallery, room B102

The workshop, hosted by the Woolf Institute and the Centre for Cultural Literary and Postcolonial Studies, SOAS, explores how minorities are represented in the arts in the Middle East from the late nineteenth-century to the present day.

The panels: Gender and the Nation, Diaspora and Transnationalism, Representation and Image, & Transformation and Agency.

The Film “Jews and Muslims: Intimate Strangers” will be screened followed by Q&A with the filmmaker, Karim Miské.

For further information and to book your place, please see our Eventbrite page. (Deadline for booking your place is 1 June 2015.)

Flier Minorities and Popular Culture in Modern Middle East June 2015

For further details, please see here: http://www.israelstudies.eu/Diary/1

2015 marks the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Parkes Library at the University of Southampton, the catalyst for the establishment of the unique Parkes Institute for the study of Jewish/non-Jewish relations. The Institute is based on the life work of the Reverend Dr James Parkes (1896-1981), one of the most remarkable figures within twentieth century Christianity. A tireless fighter against antisemitism in all forms, including from within Christianity, he helped rescue Jewish refugees during the 1930s and campaigned for the Jews of Europe during the Holocaust. During the Second World War he helped found the Council of Christians and Jews and worked throughout his career in promoting religious tolerance and mutual respect. As part of his international campaigning, he built up the Parkes Library and associated archive which transferred to the University of Southampton in 1964 and opened in 1965. It is now one of the largest Jewish documentation centres in Europe and the only one in the world devoted specifically to Jewish/non-Jewish relations.

This anniversary conference will examine the subject of Jewish/non-Jewish relations by looking at the history of research over the last 50 years, presenting the latest research in this area, and determining future directions in the field. We welcome proposals covering any subject related to Jewish/non-Jewish relations from antiquity to the present day, with proposals for papers (and panels) in the following areas especially welcome:

  • The legacy of James Parkes
  • Jewish-Christian and Jewish-Muslim relations
  • Jewish/non-Jewish relations in the Hellenistic and Roman periods
  • Rabbinic literature and the representation of the ‘other’
  • Medieval and Early Modern Jewish/non-Jewish relations
  • History of antisemitism
  • Comparative migration and identity
  • The Holocaust and Jewish/non-Jewish relations
  • Jewish/non-Jewish relations in literature and philosophy
  • Representation and constructions of the image of ‘the Jew’
  • Jews and non-Jews in the Visual and Performing Arts
  • The role and representation of Jews in the heritage world, including museums, libraries and archives.

Keynote speakers

Todd Endelman, Professor Emeritus of Modern Jewish History, University of Michigan

Sander Gilman, Professor of the Liberal Arts and Sciences and Professor of Psychiatry at Emory University

Martin Goodman, Professor of Jewish Studies, Oxford University, and President of the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies

Tony Kushner, Marcus Sieff Professor of the History of Jewish/non Jewish Relations, University of Southampton and the Parkes Institute

Miri Rubin, Professor of Medieval and Early Modern History, Queen Mary University of London

Greg Walker, Regius Professor of Rhetoric and English Literature, University of Edinburgh

Venue and Conference Information

7-9 September 2015, University of Southampton, Southampton, SO17 1BJ, UK.

Submission of paper proposals

Please submit proposals by 1 April 2015 to Dr Helen Spurling (H.Spurling@southampton.ac.uk), including the following information:

  • Author’s full name
  • Postal and email address
  • Institutional affiliation
  • Abstract of the paper to be presented (no more than 250 words)
  • Biographical information (no more than 50 words)
  • Panel proposals should not exceed one page in length
  • A limited number of bursaries will be available on a competitive basis for postgraduates and early career researchers. Please indicate if you would like to be considered for a bursary.

For further information, please visit: http://www.southampton.ac.uk/parkes/jubilee/index.page?

For academic enquiries, please contact: H.Spurling@southampton.ac.uk

For general enquiries, please contact: parkes@southampton.ac.uk

6th to 8th June 2016, MMSH, Aix-en-Provence (France), 5 rue du Château de l’Horloge, BP 647 13094 Aix-en-Provence

This EAJS Laboratory workshop will focus on the material transmission of the Hebrew Bible from Antiquity to the Middle Ages. We will examine a range of research methods used in the three main fields of Hebrew Bible manuscript studies: Dead Sea Scroll, Cairo Genizah and European Genizot studies.

Although Dead Sea Scroll (DSS), Cairo Genizah (CG) and European Genizot (EG) manuscripts date from different eras and come from a diversity of geographical and cultural backgrounds, they all constitute the only primary sources we have for the study of the transmission of the Hebrew Bible. As such, they provide various fields of research with important information about their background.

Although DSS, CG and EG studies share a common concern with the transmission of the Hebrew Bible, their research approaches differ. Whereas studies on the DSS focus mainly on linguistics and literature, the study of Medieval Hebrew Bible manuscripts (CG and EG studies) concentrates on philology, palaeography and codicology. The online availability of digitised manuscripts, the development of databases and other new research tools are also having an increasing impact on research practices.

Bringing together PhD students, early career researchers and established scholars working on Hebrew Bible manuscripts, this transdisciplinary event will encourage participants to share their research methods and approaches, in order to foster and encourage future transdisciplinary research collaborations between them.

In order to provide a focus for discussion this workshop will address the following questions:

  1. What are the approaches to the study of Hebrew Bible manuscripts (e.g. language, palaeography)?
  2. What are the limits of these approaches (i.e. how much do they tell us)?
  3. How are these approaches applied in DSS, CG and EG studies (e.g. are palaeographical approaches the same in all three fields)?
  4. How can researchers in these three fields benefit from each others’ research practices?
  5. Can digital tools make Hebrew Bible studies more rigorous?
  6. What research tools are still needed to improve the study of the material transmission of the Hebrew Bible? 

There will be three sessions, each focused on a specific field of research: Dead Sea Scrolls, the Cairo Genizah and the European Genizah. Each session will be introduced by a keynote lecture. Short presentations (10-15 min) by the participants will follow. All participants will be asked to send a first draft of their paper one month prior to the event in order to give the other participants time to prepare for an extended discussion.

To apply please send the following information to admin@eurojewishstudies.org by May 7, 2015.

  • A short (half-page) letter of motivation giving your reasons for wishing to participate in this event.
  • The title of a potential presentation and a short abstract.
  • A curriculum vitae, and the names of two referees, one of whom should be your academic supervisor.
  • EAJS membership details (note that all participants should be EAJS members at the time of the event). 

PhD students and early career researchers will be notified of the outcome shortly after 21 May 2015.

The Organisers :

  • Élodie Attia-Kay (Centre Paul-Albert Février, Aix-Marseille University)
  • Samuel Blapp (University of Cambridge, FAMES)
  • Antony Perrot (EPHE-Sorbonne, IVth section, Paris) 

Funded by the EAJS Programme in European Jewish Studies, the Stiftung “Erinnerung, Verantwortung, Zukunft” (Berlin) and the Centre Paul-Albert Février (Aix).

Co-organized by the German Historical Institute Washington, DC, the Institute for the History of the German Jews, Hamburg, the Alvin H. Rosenfeld Chair in Jewish Studies at Indiana University, Bloomington, and the Wissenschaftliche Arbeitsgemeinschaft des Leo Baeck Instituts (Miriam Ruerup, Anne Schenderlein, Mirjam Zadoff).

25.03.2015, Hamburg, Institut für die Geschichte der deutschen Juden 
We invite proposals for papers to be presented at the Fourth Junior Scholars Conference in German Jewish History, to take place at the Institute for the History of the German Jews in Hamburg in July 2015. We seek proposals specifically from post-doctoral scholars, recent PhDs, as well as those in the final stages of their dissertations. The aim of the conference is to bring together a small transatlantic group of junior scholars to discuss and explore new research and questions in German Jewish history and 19th and 20th history more broadly. During a two-day workshop, the participants will give short presentations (20 min.) of their individual research projects and engage in discussions on sources, methodology, and theory to assess current and future trends in the historiography on German Jewry.

This year’s workshop will focus on the themes of heritage and diaspora and we invite papers pertaining to these and closely related topics. We are specifically interested in creating a dialogue between scholars of Jewish history and historians working on other ethnic, religious, social, and cultural groups. In bringing together a cross-field group of historians, we hope to broaden our understanding of different approaches and sharpen our eye for particularities and commonalities in the study of heritage and diaspora. Working from the observation that genealogy research is increasingly popular today, while Jewish museums are being built and Jewish heritage tourism is flourishing all over Europe, we would like to examine this Jewish interest in heritage and place it within a broader comparative perspective.

Among some of the questions we are interested in exploring are:

  • When and why is heritage important to a community?
  • What role does the experience of diaspora, migration, persecution, and forced exile play in a community’s focus on heritage?
  • How does Zionism and the goal of overcoming the Jewish diaspora affect
  • diasporic searches for roots and inventions of a common past?
  • Does heritage have a specific place and space?
  • How are heritage sites chosen, created, invented, and represented?
  • What role does tourism play?

The workshop language will be English. The organizers cover expenses for travel (lump sum) and accommodation.

Please send short proposals (2-3 pages max.) and a one page CV to Anne Schenderlein (schenderlein@ghi-dc.org) by March 25, 2015. For questions, please also contact Anne Schenderlein. Successful applicants will be notified by April 7.

Homepage www.ghi-dc.org und www.igdj-hh.de

“The Crazy Genius of Herod the Great”

Seen through the lens of his building programme, military strategy, contemporary texts, art and architecture, and political alliances

Considering the enormous scale of his political ambitions and achievements during his lengthy reign, we shall be happy to receive submissions relating to any and all aspects of the rule of Herod the Great, including political connections, religious facets of his life and rule, propaganda, military campaigns and strategy, his innovative building programme, including the Temple at Jerusalem, art, architecture, numismatics, contemporary texts, and any other related matters.

*********

Presentation of papers at this conference will be 45 minutes within a one-hour slot, allowing time for discussion after each paper.

We invite abstracts of no more than 400 words to reach us by email at hekhal.dublinia@gmail.com by 20 March 2015.

(For further details, see the Hekhal website http://hekhal.wordpress.com/)

As those following the progress of DigiPal will be aware, an increasing number of projects are opting to study their corpora with the DigiPal framework (essentially, the database and a series of web-based tools for computer-assisted palaeography). SephardiPal is one of these “Daughters of DigiPal”, and is now so grown up that she is organising her own conference. How exciting is that? It’s a two-day conference, with the promise of plenty of palaeography on offer from the invited speakers who include:

  • Malachi Beit-Arié (The Hebrew University of Jerusalem)
  • Edna Engel (Hebrew Palaeography Project)
  • Judith Olszowy-Schlanger (École Pratique des Hautes Études, Sorbonne)
  • Colette Sirat (Institut de Recherche et d’Histoire des Textes)

See here for the Call for Papers and further details.

The conference is hosted and funded by the Postcolonial Literatures Research Group of the Open University, with additional support from the British Jewish Contemporary Culture research network, Bangor University and the University of Winchester.

Judaism can be seen as a utopian religion: the Promised Land will be an ideal place and the messiah will bring about an ideal world. Read as literature, the Bible offers one of the principal sources of utopian thought in Britain and the Western World. Judaic utopianism has become British through the cultural practice of imagining Jerusalem in these isles. It is such a conjunction of Jewish and British cultural utopias, in contemporary British-Jewish culture, which this conference proposes to explore. Challenging utopia, there is also a British-Jewish imaginative paradigm of dystopia. This has existed, in particular, since the advent of modern European antisemitism with the Dreyfus Affair and continued in the wake of the Holocaust.

Topics addressed: utopias of assimilation, Zionism, modernism, liberalism, communism, aesthetics, domesticity and romance; dystopias of antisemitism, communism, Nazism, the Holocaust and contemporary Britain, and the overlap of these utopias and dystopias.

Keynote speaker: Bryan Cheyette (University of Reading).

Confirmed speakers: Nathan Abrams (Bangor University), Finn Fordham (Royal Holloway), Ruth Gilbert (University of Winchester), James Jordan (University of Southampton), Peter Lawson (Open University), Axel Stähler (University of Kent) and Sue Vice (University of Sheffield).

The conference will be held on Thursday 23 July 2015 at the Open University London Regional Centre, Camden, and lunch will be provided. In keeping with the Open University’s founding commitment to social equality and accessible education, there will be no registration charge. It is planned to publish the proceedings.

Venue: Open University, 1-11 Hawley Crescent, Camden Town, London NW1 8NP (9.30am start).

To book: one of the limited number of places, please register for the event as soon as possible (and no later than Thursday 30 April 2015). Proposals (no more than 500 words) and a one-page CV should be sent in an email titled ‘The Promised Land Conference’ to: britishjewishcontemporarycult@gmail.com. For further information, please contact the conference organiser: p.j.lawson@open.ac.uk

The process by which some authoritative scriptures came to be included in the canons of Judaism and Christianity has received much attention. While light has been shed on the importance of scribalism, citation, rewriting, and community understanding, little attention has been placed on the implications in making some scriptures, and not others, authoritative.

The scope of this conference will revolve around the issues of historical, theological and ethical ramifications of canonization. What are the effects in elevating certain writings to the status of “Holy Scriptures”? Some texts have the power to define identity and orthodoxy, to inspire noble actions, and also to justify violence and prejudice. Is the belief in the holiness of certain texts a warrant for their use and misuse?

0900-0915 Welcome
0915-1000 John Collins (Yale University) “Uses of Torah in the Second Temple Period”
1000-1045 Michael Satlow (Brown University) “Bad Prophecies”
1045-1100 Coffee
1100-1145 Manfred Oeming (Universität Heidelberg) “The Way of God: Ethics and Ritual as Birthplaces of Canonicity”
1145-1230 Timothy Lim (University of Edinburgh) “The Insufficiency of Divine Inspiration”
1230-1330 Lunch
1400-1445 John Barton (University of Oxford) “How far does the content of canonical texts matter?
1445-1530 Walter Moberly (University of Durham) “Canonicity and religious truth: What role, if any, should a traditional canon play today?”
1530-1615 Craig Evans (Acadia Divinity School) “Jesus and the Beginnings of the Christian Canon of Scripture”
1615-1700 Tea
1700-1745 Shaye Cohen (Harvard University) “Some Reflections on the Canon”
1745-1800 Closing Remarks

For further information and how to book, please see:

http://conferences.hss.ed.ac.uk/power-authority-canon/

2015 marks the 70th anniversary of the death marches, the liberation of Auschwitz and concentration camps in western Europe, the end of World War II, and early postwar trials including the First Bergen-Belsen Trial and the opening of the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg. This sequence of anniversaries is an appropriate time to reflect on 70 years of research, education, public commemoration, musealization and cultural production, paying particular attention to the British and European contexts. It is an appropriate time to consider both what has been achieved, where there is now consensus, what remains contested, is being re-examined, and/or only now beginning to be explored. What should be our priorities in the short, medium and long-term, and do these vary depending on the local or national context, or the community of memory?

All conferences of the British Association for Holocaust Studies (BAHS) are inter- and cross-disciplinary, bringing together academics, teachers and practitioners, particularly those working in museums and at memorial sites. BAHS invites papers which consider the following:

  • Current national priorities in researching, memorializing and educating about the Holocaust;
  • Public policy, national and transnational Holocaust memory and institutions (e.g., Holocaust Memorial Days, Holocaust-related Commissions, the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance);
  • Liberation in history and memory,
  • Holocaust and/or genocide and the law;
  • Geographies/topography of the Holocaust and/or genocide, dark and Holocaust tourism;
  • Challenges and developments in 21st century museological representations of the Holocaust,
  • Contemporary representations of Holocaust and genocide, e.g., literature, film and television, music, fine and performing arts;
  • Gendered memories and representations of the Holocaust and genocide,
  • New technologies and social media in teaching, representing and memorializing the Holocaust;
  • New and emerging pedagogical practices in teaching about the Holocaust,
  • Teaching about the Holocaust in subject areas other than History,
  • Teaching about the Holocaust in relation to Human Rights, other genocides and Communist totalitarian regimes;
  • The influence of popular culture and technology on Holocaust education,
  • Teaching about the Holocaust and/or genocide at sites of memory.

In addition, proposals from those pursuing original research in any aspect of Holocaust studies are welcome.

Confirmed keynote speakers:

  • Dr Rochelle G. Saidel, Giving Women Their Place in Holocaust History. Dr Saidel is Executive Director, Remember the Women Institute, New York and Senior Researcher, Centre for the Study of Women and Society, University of São Paulo, Brazil; her recent publications include Mielec, Poland: The Shtetl That Became a Nazi Concentration Camp (2012); The Jewish Women of Ravensbrück (2004) and, co-edited with Sonja Hedgepeth, Sexual Violence against Jewish Women during the Holocaust (2012).
  • Dr Caroline Sturdy-Colls, What Lies Beneath? Forensic Archaeological Approaches to Treblinka Extermination and Labour Camps. Dr Sturdy-Colls is Associate Professor of Forensic Archaeology and genocide Investigation, Staffordshire University. She is also the Research Lead of the Centre of Archaeology at Staffordshire University. Her work focuses specifically on the investigation of Holocaust sites using forensic and archaeological techniques. She is the author of two major monographs: Holocaust Archaeologies: Approaches and Future Directions and Forensic Approaches: The Buried Remains, and has published a number of papers regarding her work in Poland, Serbia and the Channel Islands.
  • The State of Holocaust Education: Challenges and Opportunities 70 Years On, a roundtable discussion with Dr Rachel Century (Holocaust Memorial Day Trust and Fellow of the Imperial War Museum in Holocaust Education); Rachel Donnelly (Imperial War Museum); Dr Sarah Hall (University of Birmingham); Alex Maws (Holocaust Educational Trust) and Dr Andy Pearce (University of London).

Submission of abstracts for proposed papers:

BAHS invites abstracts for papers of 20 minutes length (to be followed by 10 minutes of questions). Please send an .rtf or word file of no more than 250 words plus a 100-word bio and contact details to i.l.wollaston@bham.ac.uk.

Presentations of current postgraduate research:

BAHS welcomes proposals for short presentations of 15 minutes from current PhD students at British universities introducing their research. The presentations will be followed by discussion. Proposals can be related to, or independent of, the conference theme and is open to those conducting 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 or word file with an abstract of no more than 250 words plus a 100-word bio, the name and department of your supervisor, and your contact details to i.l.wollaston@bham.ac.uk.

Bursaries:

There will be an opportunity to apply for financial assistance with fees and accommodation for teachers, postgraduate students and early career researchers who contribute a paper. Please submit a cover letter requesting financial assistance and explaining how attendance at the conference will benefit your teaching and/or research, with your abstract submission.

Location:

Centre for Professional Development, University of Birmingham (daytime sessions).

Registration:

The registration fee for the conference is £75 and includes attendance at all sessions, daily refreshments and lunch both days. A conference dinner on 21 July 2015 will cost £25. A daily registration rate of £38 (including lunch) is available for those able only to attend one day of the conference. Registration will be online and will open in early May 2015. If you wish to be notified when registration opens please contact i.l.wollaston@bham.ac.uk.

Accommodation:

Bread and breakfast accommodation in single en suite rooms is available on the university campus and can be booked online. 30 rooms are reserved in the University’s guest house @ £45/night (to be allocated on a first come first served basis). Student hall accommodation is available @ £38/night plus VAT. If delegates prefer to make their own arrangements, there are hotels and bed and breakfast accommodation near the University campus.

Important dates:

  • The deadline for submission of abstracts for papers is 5pm on 23 March 2015. We will email confirmation of safe receipt within one week. Proposals will be peer reviewed.
  • We will email notifications of acceptance of proposed papers by 1 May 2015.
  • Registration for speakers, and for accommodation on the university campus, is mandatory by 5 June 2015.
  • Conference: 21-22 July 2015

For further information:

The Parkes Institute and the University of Southampton are hosting an international workshop on a particularly understudied area of Jewish/non-Jewish relations in Eastern Europe: the relations between Jews and so-called ‘small nations’. The participants will investigate the contribution of these former ‘peasant nations’ – Belorussia, Ukraine, Lithuania and Estonia – to Jewish history and culture.

This workshop is the first exploratory step of a larger international research project. The aim of the latter will be to question the persisting ‘imperial model’ that underlies much Jewish historiography. The ‘imperial model’ has led historians to focus primarily on relations between Jews and only the most dominant social and cultural groups – the Poles and the Russians. Although recent national and Jewish historiographies have explored national histories and brought to the fore more local factors in Jewish history, the study of inter-ethnic relations in Eastern Europe remains overdetermined by national categories and/or the prevailing ‘imperial model’. By adopting a comparative approach, this project aims to go beyond these limitations by scrutinizing how the ‘small nations’ and the Jews related to each other before and after the creation of the new nation-states post-1918.

These relations have been usually discussed in terms of pragmatic economic interactions, anti-Semitism or, at best, mutual ignorance. However, with the rise of the principle of national-cultural autonomy, these relations found a new ideological and institutional stimulus at the beginning of the 20th century. The project will consider how this principle was conceived, adapted and implemented by these nations in-the-making. Despite the fact that there will be a focus on Jewish/non-Jewish relations, a reflection on the treatment of minorities more generally will also be encouraged. The project will not only seek answers to the question of how Jews and other minority groups on the margins of Russia and Poland interacted but it will also explore how formerly oppressed minorities combined their national aspirations with the necessity to accommodate minorities. With the express intention of shifting the focus away from the already widely researched problematic of anti-Semitism, the project will concentrate on a particularly neglected and little-studied aspect of Jewish/non-Jewish relations namely, cultural and artistic exchanges and mutual representations in education, literature, the arts, theatre, cinema and science.

Some possible topics might include:

  • The position of the Jewish, Lithuanian, Belorussian, Ukrainian and Latvian nationalists and intellectuals on the minority question before 1914.
  • The representation of national groups after 1905 in emerging national literatures, the press and the arts.
  • The strategic and political alliances of each national group.
  • The impact of the war and the impact of the German occupation on these alliances and on national projects.
  • The legal rights of national minorities in the new republics between 1918 and 1939.
  • Institutional opportunities for collaboration in culture, education, scholarship.
  • Cultural transfers and mutual representations.
  • The shortcomings and limitations of the national experiment in each republic.
  • The results of national-cultural autonomy and minority rights.
  • Local factors and different periodizations, in particular, a comparison between Soviet and non-Soviet temporalities and contexts.

To apply, please send a short proposal (no more than 300 words) and a CV by the 1st March 2015 to Dr Claire Le Foll c.le-foll@soton.ac.uk.

Accommodation will be provided. Please indicate if you would like to be considered for funding for your travel expenses. Papers will be published in a special issue of Jewish Culture and History.

Organised by: Woolf Institute, Cambridge & Centre for Cultural Literary and Postcolonial Studies, SOAS, University of London

Venue: SOAS, University of London Brunei Gallery, room B102

Date: 12 June 2015

Conference rationale

Thanks to modern mass communication media and commercial entertainment, popular culture has increasingly become a large industry geared for massive consumption while engendering and contesting national and communal identities. Since late nineteenth century, Middle Eastern minorities have contributed to the making of popular culture industries as public performers, producers, writers, filmmakers, musicians, etc.  Meanwhile, popular culture has been a crucial tool in constructing public imagery of both majority and minority ethnic and religious communities. Thus, popular culture has been a site of contradictions and contestations.

This workshop aims at exploring the contribution of all religious and ethnic minorities to the popular culture industries and how popular culture products have represented minorities and dealt with the minority question in modern Middle East during the twentieth century and at present. The workshop hopes to examine national, regional, and cross-regional case studies covering the area from Iran to Morocco, from Turkey to Sudan and beyond. Comparative and diasporic studies are particularly welcome.

Themes may include but are not limited to:

  • Histories of the contribution of ethnic and religious minorities to music, cinema, popular press/ publications, theatre, and TV productions
  • Representation of ethnic and religious minorities in music, cinema, theatre, popular press and TV productions in past and present
  • The treatment of minority question in entertainment industry
  • Nostalgic trends in popular production to good old days of ethnic-diversity in Middle East
  • Jews, Arabs, and Arab-Jews in Israeli popular culture
  • The Arab-Israeli conflict in popular culture
  • The dynamic of contemporary Christian media in the Arab world
  • Popular culture and the LBGT communities
  • Gendering minorities in popular culture
  • Popular culture and racialising minorities
  • State’s engagement of popular culture production to other or integrate minorities

Further information:

http://www.woolf.cam.ac.uk/news/detail.asp?ItemID=848

Submission deadline:

Please submit 200 word abstracts to: sc736@cam.ac.uk by December 12 2014. Those accepted for the workshop will be notified by early February.

2015 marks the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Parkes Library at the University of Southampton, the catalyst for the establishment of the unique Parkes Institute for the study of Jewish/non-Jewish relations. The Institute is based on the life work of the Reverend Dr James Parkes (1896-1981), one of the most remarkable figures within twentieth century Christianity. A tireless fighter against antisemitism in all forms, including from within Christianity, he helped rescue Jewish refugees during the 1930s and campaigned for the Jews of Europe during the Holocaust. During the Second World War he helped found the Council of Christians and Jews and worked throughout his career in promoting religious tolerance and mutual respect. As part of his international campaigning, he built up the Parkes Library and associated archive which transferred to the University of Southampton in 1964 and opened in 1965. It is now one of the largest Jewish documentation centres in Europe and the only one in the world devoted specifically to Jewish/non-Jewish relations.

This anniversary conference will examine the subject of Jewish/non-Jewish relations by looking at the history of research over the last 50 years, presenting the latest research in this area, and determining future directions in the field. We welcome proposals covering any subject related to Jewish/non-Jewish relations from antiquity to the present day, with proposals for papers (and panels) in the following areas especially welcome:

  • The legacy of James Parkes
  • Jewish-Christian and Jewish-Muslim relations
  • Jewish/non-Jewish relations in the Hellenistic and Roman periods
  • Rabbinic literature and the representation of the ‘other’
  • Medieval and Early Modern Jewish/non-Jewish relations
  • History of antisemitism
  • Comparative migration and identity
  • The Holocaust and Jewish/non-Jewish relations
  • Jewish/non-Jewish relations in literature and philosophy
  • Representation and constructions of the image of ‘the Jew’
  • Jews and non-Jews in the Visual and Performing Arts
  • The role and representation of Jews in the heritage world, including museums, libraries and archives.

Keynote speakers

Todd Endelman, Professor Emeritus of Modern Jewish History, University of Michigan

Sander Gilman, Professor of the Liberal Arts and Sciences and Professor of Psychiatry at Emory University

Martin Goodman, Professor of Jewish Studies, Oxford University, and President of the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies

Tony Kushner, Marcus Sieff Professor of the History of Jewish/non Jewish Relations, University of Southampton and the Parkes Institute

Miri Rubin, Professor of Medieval and Early Modern History, Queen Mary University of London

Greg Walker, Regius Professor of Rhetoric and English Literature, University of Edinburgh

Venue and Conference Information

7-9 September 2015, University of Southampton, Southampton, SO17 1BJ, UK.

Submission of paper proposals

Please submit proposals by 1 April 2015 to Dr Helen Spurling (H.Spurling@southampton.ac.uk), including the following information:

  • Author’s full name
  • Postal and email address
  • Institutional affiliation
  • Abstract of the paper to be presented (no more than 250 words)
  • Biographical information (no more than 50 words)
  • Panel proposals should not exceed one page in length
  • A limited number of bursaries will be available on a competitive basis for postgraduates and early career researchers. Please indicate if you would like to be considered for a bursary.

For further information, please visit: http://www.southampton.ac.uk/parkes/jubilee/index.page?

For academic enquiries, please contact: H.Spurling@southampton.ac.uk

For general enquiries, please contact: parkes@southampton.ac.uk

Project leaders:

  • Dr Alison Salvesen (University of Oxford)
  • Prof. Sarah Pearce (University of Southampton)
  • Dr Miriam Frenkel (Hebrew University, Jerusalem)
  • Dr Dorothy Peters (Trinity Western University, Canada)

For Jews in ancient and medieval Palestine and the Diaspora, the land of Egypt was a real place and also an abstract notion shaped by scriptural texts. The nation-defining episode of the Exodus of the Israelites, the unequivocal injunction in the Torah not to return to Egypt (Deut 17:16) and the negative attitude of biblical writers in general towards Egypt, existed in tension with the fact of Jewish residence there. Jewish settlements in Egypt ranged from the time of Jeremiah, to the Jewish military garrison in Elephantine during the Persian period, to major settlements and above all the huge urban community in Alexandria under the Ptolemies and Romans. Though all these disappear in the second century following the revolt of 115–17 CE and the extermination of the Jews of Egypt under Trajan, the presence of Jews is attested again in the fifth century by patristic writers, and then through Byzantine and Islamic rule into the medieval period, principally by the documents preserved in the Cairo Geniza.

The ‘Israel in Egypt’ project addresses a number of questions about identity and belonging among Egyptian Jews over the course of one and a half millennia.

  1. Did Jewish communities in the Persian and Graeco-Roman periods regard themselves as exiles from their homeland, or as legitimate and even divinely approved outposts of Judaism?
  2. How did Jews in Egypt interpret their relationship to the land of Egypt and its inhabitants?
  3. How did the Roman conquest of Egypt change Jewish/non-Jewish relations in Egypt?
  4. What difference did the existence or cessation of the Jerusalem Temple make to Egyptian Jewish identity over the period?
  5. How did Jews negotiate rule by monotheistic Christians and then Muslims, in comparison with their strategies under pagan Roman domination? Was there total cultural amnesia with regard to previous Jewish settlement in Egypt? Were Jewish anxieties regarding living in Egypt the same as for previous generations, or different ones?
  6. What significance do the changing patterns of language use by Egyptian Jews have for ethnic and religious identity?
  7. Over the period studied, how did Jews in Palestine and the rest of the Diaspora regard Egypt and the presence of their co-religionists there?

Key sources for Jewish life in Egypt include the Aramaic Elephantine documents and a large corpus of Greek papyri written about or by Jews, the Zenon papyri, Jewish inscriptions from Leontopolis, Demerdash and other sites, the wide range of Hellenistic Jewish literature including the bulk of the LXX, the works of Philo of Alexandria, and the writings of Flavius Josephus. For the early Islamic period there are many papyri bearing indirect testimony to Jewish life in Egypt, and for the medieval period there is the vast collection of documents produced by Jews and preserved for centuries in the Cairo Geniza.

Weekly seminars will be convened through the duration of two Oxford terms, 17th January– 12th March, and 24th April–18th June 2016. These will offer a forum for the Fellows of the project to address central research topics related to the overall theme of the seminar. The findings of the Research Project will be presented at a concluding conference which will be open to the academic community. Fellows will be invited to present a paper at this conference.

Visiting Fellows will receive a stipend of £2,500 per calendar month (pro rata) for the period of tenure and travelling expenses up to £500. The Centre offers advice to Visiting Fellows on the location of suitable accommodation in Oxford, for which it is prudent to expect to use up to £1,750 of the monthly stipend. Visiting Fellows are provided with shared office space in the Clarendon Institute Building in the centre of Oxford, where the Leopold Muller Library is housed and where most of the Centre’s academic staff have their offices.

Applications by senior scholars, and by scholars at postdoctoral and advanced doctoral level, are all welcome. Preference will be given to proposals which involve use of any special resources available in Oxford.

Closing date for applications: 9th January 2015.

For more detailed information and the application procedure see http://www.ochjs.ac.uk/academics/visiting-academics/visiting-fellows/ or contact:

Prof. Sarah Pearce S.J.Pearce@soton.ac.uk; Dr Alison Salvesen alison.salvesen@orinst.ox.ac.uk

CLOSING DATE: 16 JANUARY 2015

The Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies invites proposals from individuals or institutions wishing to direct an Oxford Seminar in Advanced Jewish Studies in 2016–2017 or 2017-2018.

The Centre will host up to two Seminars in Oxford in each of the academic years 2016-2017 and 2017-2018. In each academic year individual seminars will be convened either from mid October to mid March or from mid January to mid June.

Each group will convene in weekly seminars through the duration of two Oxford terms, which in 2016- 2017 will be from 9 October to 3 December, 15 January to 11 March, and 23 April to 17 June. In 2017-2018 the terms will run from 8 October to 2 December, 14 January to 10 March, and 22 April to 16 June. These meetings will offer a forum for the Fellows to address central research topics related to the overall theme of the project. One or more publications will be expected as a product of each Seminar.

Each Seminar will be based on a core of visiting fellows, who will participate in the work of the research group for the full six months in conjunction with a larger number of fellows who will attend for shorter periods. Each Seminar can expect funding for up to the equivalent of seven fellows in residence for six months.

Visiting Fellows will receive a stipend, including a sum to cover accommodation and travelling expenses. Visiting Fellows are provided with shared office space in the Clarendon Institute Building in the centre of Oxford, where the Leopold Muller Library is housed and where most of the Centre’s academic staff have their offices.

Proposals are invited for research groups in any area of Hebrew and Jewish Studies. Preference will be given to projects with a clear research rationale which involve use of any special resources available in Oxford.

Proposals, in not more than two pages, should include the following information:

  1. Title of Seminar
  2. Seminar leaders
  3. Description of subject
  4. Methods to be used to ensure best value from collaborative research
  5. Possibilities for innovation through the research project
  6. Reasons why Oxford is particularly appropriate as the venue for the seminar
  7. Value of the Seminar for the development of Jewish Studies as an academic subject
  8. Some suggestions of scholars who might fruitfully be invited to participate in such a project

Please attach a brief curriculum vitae of each Seminar leader.

The Centre will inform applicants in early February 2015 which proposals have been selected for further consideration and may request further information from proposers before the final decision in mid March 2015.

Please send your proposal to the Registrar, Martine Smith-Huvers, at registrar@ochjs.ac.uk by 16 January 2015.

Closing date for applications: 16 January 2015

For information on previous Seminars held at the Centre see http://www.ochjs.ac.uk/academic- activities/previous-research-projects-osajs/, and on the Seminars held in 2013-2014 and to be held in 2014-2015, see: http://www.ochjs.ac.uk/academic-activities/oxford-seminar-in-advanced-jewish- studies-in-2013/

‘Auschwitz has become a site of memory with a future, and it has thus become another tourist site with all the required amenities, a “must” on any itinerary.’ (Sicher, Breaking Crystal: 21)

Formerly locations of abject horror, the concentration camps have arguably been transformed into tourist hotspots, available as part of package deals complete with tour guides, audio-guide headsets, and pertinent photo opportunities. The concentration camps might have remained stationary in a physical or geographical sense, but their topography has not maintained its horrific essence, and their cultural meaning has shifted substantially. The diachronic shift of the last seventy years has thus – perhaps -facilitated a usurpation of the camps, which have come to be experienced simultaneously as loci of remembrance and profanations against memory.

The concentration camps are experienced temporally and spatially: you can physically go to the camps and you can learn of the camps from the pages of history. Notwithstanding, neither historical nor spatial distancing suffices in order to assuage the horror. Primo Levi suggested that at the moment of the horror, one could not conceive it at its full magnitude; he argued that the victim ‘felt overwhelmed by an enormous edifice of violence and menace but could not form for himself a representation of it because his eyes were fastened to the ground by every single minute’s needs’ (The Drowned and the Saved: 6). Levi’s concern at the time was that the Lagers did not provide a good ‘observation post’ (6) from which to fully comprehend the true scope of the catastrophe therein. The question now, is whether in addition to the perspective gained from spatial distance, we might have gained perspective through temporal lapse; if so, what kind of new and different perspectives has this distance provided? The seventy year milestone allows us to engage with these questions, inviting, perhaps, objective – or, more objective – perspectives on these questions.

In a Lefebvrian sense, space is socially constructed and the concentration camps are a particularly apt example. We would like to invite not only papers that explore the topography of the camps – from historical, sociological, and artistic perspectives – but also papers that examine the camps’ topology. Utilising a topological methodology in relation to the camps may facilitate some fascinating approaches: for instance, notions of continuity and (dis)connectedness; the manner in which boundaries are experienced and delineated in the camps; and the proximity to neighbouring populations that can be read both literally and metaphorically.

Within the discussion of the Holocaust, the concentration camps hold a pivotal position: as the sites of mass destruction, and the culmination of the Nazi enterprise, the camps are the embodiment of Nazi cruelty and efficiency. This multidisciplinary conference will explore representations of the camps in literature and art in an attempt to discern the lessons and legacies of the Holocaust more broadly; historical accounts and sociological perspectives may also yield further insight into the role of the concentration camps in the perception of the Holocaust at large. This conference invites papers that explore the unresolved questions that the concentration camps pose within political, historical, and cultural discourses.

In addition to the main issue of the conference, we are also interested in papers that explore the following:

  • Representations of concentration camps in art and literature
  • Cultural Representations of Nazi persecution
  • The Jewish Shoah
  • Lessons and legacies of the Holocaust
  • Historical accounts
  • Sociological perspectives (e.g., gender roles in the concentration camps)
  • The ethics of representation
  • Perpetrator perspectives
  • Geographical and topological explorations of the concentration camps
  • Morality at and after Auschwitz
  • Trauma and Survivors’ Narratives

 

Confirmed keynote speakers:

Professor Sue Vice (University of Sheffield)

Professor Nikolaus Wachsmann (Birkbeck University)

Dr Maurizio Cinquegrani (University of Kent)

 

The conference will be held at the Jewish Museum in London 6-8 January 2015. Please send abstracts of no more than 300 words to Vered Weiss and Jo Pettitt at tracingtopographies@kent.ac.uk by 29 August 2014.                                    

Johannes Pfefferkorn and the dispersion of his texts

The beginning of the sixteenth century saw the arrival of a new genre of polemical writing about Jews and Judaism, viz. ethnographical books that aimed at providing their readers with revealing knowledge about Jews, their rituals, and their customs. Among the most prominent of these writers was the Moravian Jew, Johannes Pfefferkorn (c. 1469–1523), a converted Jew who joined forces with the Dominicans in Cologne to publish a series of books and pamphlets that attacked the Jews’ way of life. His aim was to draw the Jews “into the light” and expose their anti-Christian behaviour. Furthermore, he called for the destruction of Jewish books, a stance that brought him into direct conflict with the humanist Johann Reuchlin. Pfefferkorn’s works were soon translated into other German and Scandinavian languages as well as Latin, and thus rapidly spread to areas that remained unaffected by the local conflicts and debates in Cologne. Furthermore, Pfefferkorn’s publications about the religion of his birth did not remain the only example of writings by converts that shaped images of Jews in the early modern era.

Aim of the conference

The conference aims to draw together scholars of medieval and early modern ethnographical writing about Jews and of Jewish-Christian relations as well as to offer a forum for discussion and methodological innovation. Areas of interest might include:

  • Pfefferkorn and early modern antisemitism
  • Elements of Pfefferkorn’s enterprise and their broader history
  • The ethnographical aspect of Pfefferkorn’s works and the emergence of critical research on Jewish texts and rituals
  • The various versions and translations of Pfefferkorn’s works
  • Other sixteenth-century converts who write about Jews, such as Victor von Carben, Anthonius Margaritha, Ernst Ferdinand Hess, and Paulus Staffelsteiner

Keynote Speakers

Yaacov Deutsch ([Head of] History Department, David Yellin College, and History Department, Hebrew University), author of Judaism in Christian Eyes: Ethnographic Descriptions of Jews and Judaism in Early Modern Europe (Oxford University Press, 2012).

Participation

The conference organisers welcome submissions from scholars working in all disciplines and all areas of late medieval and early modern culture and Jewish-Christian relations. The conference seeks to offer a meeting ground for established scholars as well as younger researchers. Please send a title and a short abstract (about 200 words) to the organisers Cordelia Heß (cordelia.hess@historia.su.se) and Jonathan Adams (jonathan.adams@nordiska.uu.se) before 1 October 2014.

Conference Theme

The dramatic modern processes of secularization, urbanization and immigration have made Jewish traditions an object of nostalgia, rejection, national pride, and ethnographic research, or various mixtures of these attitudes and practices. From the days of the Haskala movement to today, playwrights, theatre and film directors and other artists have been fascinated by Jewish history, folklore, rituals and tropes. Focusing on Eastern European Jewish culture, but without excluding other Jewish traditions, this conference aims to ask: How are lost or disappearing traditions being staged and re-imagined? What happens when past events and practices return as constructed memories, fantasies or gestures? How do specific art media shape these cultural translations?

In today’s highly departmentalized world, film, theatre, performance and literature are rarely studied together. The conference aims to discuss these various media together, focusing on their common tendency to display, re-imagine and perform what may belong to the past but still haunts the present, and to bring into dialogue scholars of various cultures (Yiddish, Hebrew, German, and Polish) to examine Jewish culture in the broader contexts of European and American culture, in order to facilitate an interdisciplinary discussion not limited to the field of Jewish Studies.

Time and place

Monday-Tuesday, 26-27 January 2015,Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies, Clarendon Institute Building, Oxford

Travel and accommodation

Travel expenses for speakers will be reimbursed up to certain limits (depending on location). Accommodation in Oxford will be provided to conference participants for the duration of the conference.

Proposals

Researchers from all knowledge areas are invited to submit a proposal for their papers. Please send an abstract of 300-500 words together with a short CV to Zehavit Stern: zehavit.stern@orinst.ox.ac.uk no later than October 1st. Please include your contact information and specify the location from which you would be traveling to the conference. All proposals are subject to a review process.

Funded by the European Research Council (ERC)

Hosted by the Dpt. of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Utrecht University

With keynotes from Hans Belting, Lindsay Jones, Christian Lange, Birgit Meyer, and Leigh Eric Schmidt

“The aesthetics of crossing: experiencing the beyond in Abrahamic traditions” is a three-day, interdisciplinary, international conference dedicated to studying the manifold ways in which the body experiences and, at times, traverses the perceived divide between the sacred and the profane. Because religious boundaries are not necessarily registered or crossed by the body in its entirety but by one or a number of its senses, the conference is structured around the body’s senses, including the inner, more incorporeal ones such as the faculty of the imagination. The conference seeks: (a) to produce insights, drawn from the study of primary body-related data (texts, images, objects, practices, etc.), into how the body is the vehicle and agent of religious boundary-crossing; (b) to examine how such conceptualizations and uses of the body are both affirmed and contested within religious and secular traditions; and (c) to locate the study of the body and its boundary-crossing potential in the recent disciplinary and political transformations in the study of religion across the Humanities.

“The aesthetics of crossing: experiencing the beyond in Abrahamic traditions” marks the end of a series of scholarly consultations organized within the framework of HHIT (“The here and the hereafter in Islamic traditions”), a four-year research project funded by the European Research Council and hosted at Utrecht University (http://hhit.wp.hum.uu.nl/). HHIT has been primarily invested in studying Muslim cosmologies and imaginaries, seeking to trace and locate the various boundaries, often unstable and permeable, that divide this world from the otherworld in a variety of Islamic religious discourses and practices. This conference seeks to broaden the work of HHIT in several directions, and to stimulate discussion across disciplines such as Islamic Studies, Religious Studies, Anthropology, Literature, History of Art, and others.

Paper proposals (< 500 words) are solicited in the following areas, as outlined in the full CfP at this link:

http://tinyurl.com/kj6qc2t

For further information, please contact the conference organizers, Christian Lange (Utrecht University) and Simon O’Meara (SOAS, London), at aestheticsofcrossing[at]gmail.com

Neighbours: Relations between Jews and non-Jews throughout History

In 2001, Polish-American historian Jan T. Gross published a controversial monograph entitled Neighbours in which he described the destruction of the Jewish community in the Polish city of Jedwabne at the hands of the local Polish population. The term neighbour became synonymous with the suffering of the Jews at the hands of the non-Jewish locals. Relations between Jews and non-Jews throughout history are often depicted as full of prejudice, mistrust, violence, pogroms and murder. Authors often debate the impossibility of a beneficial multicultural and multiethnic coexistence between the Jewish and non-Jewish locals. They also conjecture that it was this impossibility of coexistence that ultimately led to the collapse of the European Jewish world in the twentieth century, but also to the subsequent complicated establishment of the Jews in other parts of the world. However, looking at the history of the Jewish people all over the world, we also need to consider the benefits of the coexistence between the Jews and other people. The moments of crisis were often followed by centuries of peaceful coexistence, where interactions between communities led to political, cultural and spiritual developments and improvements. The Jews and their neighbours maintained close relations, influenced each other and created bonds that beneficially shaped the lives of both communities throughout the centuries.

Since antiquity the Jews have lived side by side with other peoples. With the geographic dispersion of the Jews after the destruction of the Second Temple and their gradual settlement in Europe, Asia, Africa and later in the ‘New World’, the interactions between the Jews and other communities invariably increased. The purpose of the conference is to convene scholars who are involved in academic research of Jewish/non-Jewish (however defined) relations throughout the centuries. We intend to offer a multifaceted perspective on the lives of the Jews and their rich interactions with their neighbours all over the world.

We welcome papers that address the issue of Jewish coexistence with other peoples from diverse perspectives, including:

  • Interactions between the Jews and non-Jews throughout centuries
  • Ancient Israel and its neighbours
  • Cultural and spiritual interactions between the Jews and other communities
  • Influence of other communities on Jewish languages
  • Impact of Jews and Judaism on other communities
  • Impact of other communities on Jews and Judaism
  • Judaism and other religious communities
  • Jewish communities and their neighbours in the modern era
  • Modern Israel and its neighbours
  • Violence in Jewish history
  • Representation of Jews and their neighbours in film and literature
  • Proposals for special sessions (roundtables, film screenings or discussions of new book releases) will also be considered.

 Papers on other topics will be considered but preference will be given to those bearing directly on the conference theme.

Please submit your paper proposal by 1 September 2014 to Dr Jan Láníček via email J.Lanicek@unsw.edu.au. The Subject of the message should be ‘AAJS UNSW 2015 Proposal’ (All applicants will be informed about the decision by 31 October 2014).

Submissions must include the following:

  • Applicant’s full name and institutional affiliation
  • Postal and email address
  • Abstract of the paper to be presented (no more than 250 words)
  • Short biographical note (no more than 50 words).

AAJS encourages students engaged in academic research to submit proposals based on their work to the conference committee. Authors should clearly indicate their student status on their submission.

Presenters are also invited to submit written articles for consideration for publication in the Australian Journal for Jewish Studies.

Communication about the conference should be sent electronically to Dr Jan Láníček, email: J.Lanicek@unsw.edu.au

Conference Committee

  • Dr Jan Láníček, Conference Convener
  • Dr Michael Abrahams-Sprod, AAJS President
  • Professor Suzanne Rutland OAM
  • Michael Misrachi
  • Dr Avril Alba
  • Dr Myer Samra
  • Dr Miriam Munz
  • Neta Steigrad
  • Anna Rosenbaum
  • Professor Ghil‘ad Zuckermann

As this Conference addresses a small community of scholars, it is imperative that we all support the Association. Thus, it is a requirement that all presenters at this conference must have paid the conference registration fee, which includes the AAJS membership for 2014, by 10 January 2015. Visit www.aajs.org.au for details.

For further information, to submit proposals and to register for the conference, please go to http://www.manchesterjewishstudies.org/bajs-conference/.

BAJS-2015-poster

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