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Undergraduate Programs

Jewish Studies

Check the course schedules/descriptions available via the Registrar's Office for the official schedules for the widest range of terms for which such information is available.


Below you will find a list of all undergraduate courses that have been offered.

NOTE: Not all of these courses are offered in any given year.

JST 101 Elementary Hebrew I

Introduction to the structure of standard modern Hebrew. Practice in reading, writing, basic language usage and grammar. In addition to texts, relevant cultural materials are provided through the use of video and technology based materials.

Last Offered: Fall 2020

JST 102 Elementary Modern Hebrew II

Direct continuation of Hebrew 101 with emphasis on enhancing basic reading, writing, and speaking skills in standard modern Hebrew. In addition to reading texts, relevant cultural materials are provided through the use of audio, video and technology based materials.

Last Offered: Spring 2020

JST 103 Intermediate Hebrew I

Direct continuation of Hebrew 102 with emphasis on enhancing reading comprehension and writing and speaking skills in standard modern Hebrew. Students enrolling are expected to have a good understanding of basic Hebrew grammar structures, including familiarity with common verb forms. In addition to texts, relevant cultural materials are provided through the use of video and technology based materials.

Last Offered: Fall 2020

JST 104 Intermediate Modern Hebrew II

This is a fourth semester course in the Hebrew language series designed as a direct continuation of HEB 103. The focus of instruction is on the enhancement of language skills through the acquisition of complex morphological and syntactical structures and the expansion of vocabulary and idioms. The course has an emphasis on oral and written communication in both standard and colloquial modern Hebrew. In addition to reading texts, relevant cultural materials are provided through the use of audio, video and technology based materials. *Note* Course will be offered at a time that fits into the schedules of those enrolled.

Last Offered: Spring 2020

JST 105 Intro to Biblical Hebrew

No description

JST 106 Introduction to the Old Testament

Examination of the texts of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament for Christians) in their religious, historical, and literary contexts. In this course, students will learn the history of the Ancient Israelite people from their origins down through the post-Exilic period. Study of the texts of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) enable us to explore what we can know about Ancient Israelite society and culture, the rise and fall of Israel as a nation-state, religious and theological debates about the role of God in shaping history and the problem of suffering, as well as the writing of the biblical texts and the development of the canon.

Last Offered: Fall 2020

JST 110 Introduction to Biblical Hebrew

A one-semester introduction to classical Hebrew for beginners. The course will cover the Hebrew writing system (alphabet and pointing/vocalization rules), basic grammatical structures and vocabulary, and the guided reading and translation of selected simple biblical narratives.

Last Offered: Spring 2018

JST 113 History of Judaism

An introduction to the religious and cultural development of Judaism. Will emphasize Judaism as a living tradition, one which has been subject to both continuity and change among its practitioners throughout its history.

Last Offered: Spring 2020

JST 121 Hitler's Germany

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2019

JST 125 Religion, Race, and Ethnicity in America

A methodological inquiry into ethnicity, race, and religion as constituents of personal and communal identity. The course will emphasize the implications of these categories for a religiously pluralistic society such as the United States. Topics to be covered in this course include American immigration history, race relations, and the process of Americanization. How do Americans achieve “whiteness”? What is the difference between “ethnic” and “racial”? How are these differences gendered? How does religion factor into these questions? Twentieth and twenty-first century shifts in American religious practice will be examined in light of immigration.

Last Offered: Spring 2016

JST 126 ISLAMOPHOBIA ANTI-SEMITISM

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2020

JST 145 Judaism in America

This course explores the development of American Judaism, specifically examining how Judaism and its American practitioners responded to historical events in the New World through an emphasis on immigration, politics, cultural creativity, religious change, and the establishment of a diasporic community with ties to Jews throughout the world.

Last Offered: Spring 2019

JST 154 Religion and the Race for the White House

This course addresses the diversity and depth of religious practice in the United States and its role in Presidential politics. Taught thematically so that we may examine specific religious movements and questions in depth, attention will be paid to those religions generally conceived to be “traditional” in the U.S. as well as those widely perceived as “non-traditional”. Themes considered include civil religion, millennialism, race and gender, and the dynamics of liberalism and conservatism.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

JST 161 Women in Judaism

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2020

JST 172 FREUD AND RELIGION

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2020

JST 177 KITCHEN JUDAISM

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2020

JST 178 Religion, Food & Eating in America

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2014

JST 179 Jews and Popular Culture

Full title, "Entertaining America: Jews & Popular Culture", is a thematic introduction to the relationship between Jews and American entertainment media from the turn of the 20th century to today. Will address Jewish experience in radio, Hollywood, theatre, and television, as well as popular print culture such as comic books.

Last Offered: Fall 2014

JST 181 "Other" In Modern Hebrew Literature

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2014

JST 184 Judaism and Film

In this course, students will examine the portrayal of Judaism and the various interpretations and iterations of Jewish identity through American, European, and Israeli film, both contemporary and classic. The course will address issues such as immigration and assimilation, gender and the status of women, religious reform, responses to the Holocaust, with close attention to the significant impact and influence of American representations of Jewish life. Select readings will sharpen our analysis of film as well as situate the films within the historical and cultural contexts in which they were produced.

Last Offered: Spring 2019

JST 188 Issues in Contemporary Jewish Thought

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2013

JST 204 Hebrew through Media and Literature

The course is designed to develop advanced reading and conversational skills using various materials including Israeli newspapers, movies and songs in Hebrew, texts from modern Hebrew literature (both fiction and poetry), comics and graphic novels. Writing skills are enhanced through a series of related home-assignments. Review of the Hebrew verbal system and syntactical structures and enrichment of vocabulary are also among the objectives of this course.

Last Offered: Fall 2018

JST 205 Nietzsche & Nietzscheans

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2016

JST 209 Judaism in the Ancient World

Study the history and literature of the varieties of Judaism from the time of the Babylonian Exile in 587 BCE to the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 CE and its aftermath. Often called the Second Temple period, this is the era out of which both Rabbinic Judaism and the Christianity emerged. We will blend historical and literary approaches, weaving our historical survey of the period with analyses of the many and varied Jewish texts produced during this time in order to understand the complex development of Judaism in the ancient world. Special focus on several central themes such as the struggles of Jews under foreign domination, the experiences of Jews in diaspora communities outside of Israel, the influence of Hellenization, the development of apocalypticism, the development of antisemitism, and the emergence of scripture/the Bible and the emergence of the figure of the scribe.

Last Offered: Spring 2014

JST 210 Jewish Civilization-Poland

Presents a survey of Jewish history in Poland from the beginning of Jewish settlement on Polish lands through the present. Special attention is paid to key events important for Jewish history and Polish-Jewish relations.

Last Offered: Fall 2014

JST 210A The Jews in Poland

A survey of history of Jewish communities in Poland and the Holocaust. Post-Holocaust history of the Jews and Jewish culture in Poland will also be covered with the emphasis on Jewish-non-Jewish relations and anti-Semitism, as well as recent revival of the Jewish life in Poland.

Last Offered: Summer 2014

JST 211 Jews, Pagans, and Christians: Conflict in the Ancient World

This seminar focuses on the problem of religious conflict, competition, hatred, and prejudice among Jews, Pagans, and Christians in the ancient Mediterranean world from c. 300 BCE to c. 400 CE, a period of significant cultural and political change characterized by increased contact among various religious groups which resulted, often, in tension and violence. We study the origins of anti-semitism, the interconnections between religious conflict and political violence, the power of the state to oppress religious groups, etc. Close careful analysis of texts and events from this particular historical-cultural context will provide us with the starting point to address fundamental questions about the nature of religious conflict, religious polemic, and religious oppression in general.

Last Offered: Spring 2019

JST 212 Jewish Philosophy

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2013

JST 213 Jewish Mysticism

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2013

JST 214 Imagining the Jew

This seminar will examine the representation of Orthodox Jews by American Jews on both page and screen. This course should equip you to understand—historically and critically—the core factors in this contemporary culture war such as (gender, religious authority, political affiliation) as well as to empathetically appreciate current concern over acculturation, Americanization, and Jewish continuity.

Last Offered: Fall 2020

JST 215 Jews and Muslims

A History of Jewish-Muslim relations from the time of Muhammad until the rise of Zionism in the 1880s.

Last Offered: Spring 2019

JST 216 Jews and Multiculturalism

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2014

JST 217 Modern Jewish Philosophy

The music of Judaism and the Jewish people from the earliest times until the present and the role of music in shaping the character of Jewish historical, religious, and cultural experience.

Last Offered: Spring 2015

JST 219 Holocaust: Affect and Absence

How does one represent the unrepresentable? This is the key question we will explore as we look at films and literature about the Holocaust. As we look at fictional films, novels, documentaries and memoirs, we will discuss topics including memory, trauma, truth and representation. This course offers a look at the ways in which artists and their audiences negotiate the themes of loss, horror and redemption within the context of the Holocaust and its aftermath.

Last Offered: Spring 2019

JST 220 Jews & Multiculturalism in America

Jewish immigration in the U.S.and the ways in which these immigrants chose to acculturate (or not).

Last Offered: Fall 2015

JST 221 Land, Language & Identity in Modern Hebrew Literature

Survey of modern Hebrew classics in English translation up to 1948. The themes of land, language, and identity are explored in modern Hebrew literature written in Europe and Palestine prior to 1948.

Last Offered: Fall 2012

JST 222 Venice and the Jews

By combining the examination of primary sources, the use of media, and the access to relevant digital materials, the course will explore the unique experience of Jews in Renaissance and early modern Italy, with a focus on Venice. Topics discussed will include the institution of the first ghetto in history, the economic role of Jewish merchants and moneylenders, Jews, Crypto-Jews, and Judaizers in front of the Venetian Inquisition, and Jewish everyday life on the lagoon.

Last Offered: Spring 2016

JST 225 The Holocaust and Its Memory in Eastern Europe

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2016

JST 226 GUILT

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2020

JST 229 Kafka and His World

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2015

JST 231 German Jews

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2010

JST 232 German Thinkers

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2015

JST 234 Strangers in a Strange Land

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2014

JST 238 German Intellectual History

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2017

JST 242 Jewish Writers and Rebels

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2016

JST 243 REVOLUTIONS & REVOLTS

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2020

JST 248 Russian Identity

This course examines how culture, ethnicity, and politics intersect in 20th-century Russian literature. We begin with excerpts from Dostoevsky's "Diary of a Writer," sacralizing Russianness and demonizing Jews. Political and artistic avant-gardes 1900-1930 are analyzed for their attempts to overcome traditional ethnic divisions. In Stalin's Russia an international Soviet identity was replaced by a Russian state culture, which put "cosmopolitanism" on trial after World War II. A secular Russian cultural identity was the norm until the state withdrew from the cultural sphere in the late 1980s, but Russian Jewish emigre literature was available to many readers through unofficial channels. We end with the battle of competing identities in post-1985 Russia. Readings include: Dostoevsky, Babel, Grossman, Mandelstam, Pasternak, Roziner, Tertz, Markish, Rasputin, and Brodsky. In English.

Last Offered: Spring 2016

JST 248W Russian Identity

This course examines how culture, ethnicity, and politics intersect in 20th-century Russian literature. We begin with excerpts from Dostoevsky's "Diary of a Writer," sacralizing Russianness and demonizing Jews. Political and artistic avant-gardes 1900-1930 are analyzed for their attempts to overcome traditional ethnic divisions. In Stalin's Russia an international Soviet identity was replaced by a Russian state culture, which put "cosmopolitanism" on trial after World War II. A secular Russian cultural identity was the norm until the state withdrew from the cultural sphere in the late 1980s, but Russian Jewish emigre literature was available to many readers through unofficial channels. We end with the battle of competing identities in post-1985 Russia. Readings include: Dostoevsky, Babel, Grossman, Mandelstam, Pasternak, Roziner, Tertz, Markish, Rasputin, and Brodsky. In English.

Last Offered: Spring 2016

JST 249 Secret Nation

The cult and culture of secrecy in Russia from Ivan the Terrible to the present. Russia was always an enigma, as tsarist and Soviet governments gathered and controlled information. The Russian people kept information from the government, and foreign states sent out disinformation of their own about Russia. There was an active underground in religion, literature, politics, the economy, and other areas. With glasnost, Gorbachev began the process of uncovering secrets from above, and a freer press began to do the same from below. We use materials from history, religion, literature, film, political science, and economics, to get a richly detailed picture of the information that was hidden, and the means by which this was accomplished. Official secrecy that was originally a defensive move came to undermine the state it sought to protect. At the end of the semester we see to what extent old habits of secrecy persists in Russia today. The course is taught in English.

Last Offered: Fall 2015

JST 253 Zionism & Its Discontents

This course explores the emergence and developments of Zionist ideologies in the 19th and 20th centuries. Following this, we will consider a number of recent explorations of Zionism in practice as well as Jewish and Palestinian critics of the Zionist project.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

JST 265 Israel/Palestine

This course will provide a non-partisan introduction to the conflict between these two national movements. Discussion will focus on an examination of historical documents, in addition to understanding of how it plays out in literature and film.

Last Offered: Fall 2018

JST 265W Modern Jewish History

This seminar, intended for juniors and seniors with some background in either American or European history, examines significant topics in modern Jewish history, including Emancipation, the Damascus Affair in the Ottoman Empire, the Haskalah, Bundist and Zionist movements, emigration to North America and Palestine, the rise of modern anti-Semitism, the emergence of Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist Judaism, World War I and the Balfour Declaration, the Amercian Jewish community in the twentieth century, World War II and the Holocaust, the founding of the state of Israel and the Arab-Israeli conflict.

Last Offered: Fall 2010

JST 390 Supervised Teaching

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2019

JST 391 Independent Study

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2020

JST 391W Independent Study

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2020

JST 394 Internship

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2020