2013-2014 Undergraduate Catalog

Hebrew and Judaic Studies

Faculty

Amiram Amitai, Lecturer
Penny Armstrong, Chair and Eunice M. Schenck 1907 Professor of French and Director of Middle Eastern Languages

Modern Hebrew language instruction is available at Bryn Mawr through the intermediate level; at Swarthmore College biblical Hebrew is offered in a two-semester sequence through the first-year level, and additional reading in Classical Jewish texts is available in directed reading, one-half-credit courses. At Haverford, Judaic Studies courses are offered by the Department of Religion. Bryn Mawr also offers several courses which complement Haverford’s offerings in Judaic Studies. All of these courses are listed in the Tri-Co Course Guide under the heading “Hebrew and Judaic Studies.”

College Foreign Language Requirement

The College’s foreign language requirement may be satisfied by completing Hebrew 001 and 002 with an average grade of at least 2.0 or with a grade of 2.0 or better in Hebrew 002.

COURSES

HEBR B001 Elementary Hebrew
This is a year-long course. This course prepares students for reading classical religious texts as well as modern literary work. It covers grammar, composition, and conversation with primary emphasis on fluency in reading as well as the development of basic conversational skills.
Requirement(s): Language Level 1
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Amitai,A.
(Fall 2013)

HEBR B002 Elementary Hebrew
This is a year-long course. This course prepares students for reading classical religious texts as well as modern literary work. It covers grammar, composition, and conversation with primary emphasis on fluency in reading as well as the development of basic conversational skills.
Requirement(s): Language Level 1
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Amitai,A.
(Spring 2014)

HEBR B101 Intermediate Hebrew
The course is designed for students who took the Elementary Hebrew course in Bryn Mawr or its equivalents in other institutions, assuming basic fluency in reading, writing, grammar, syntax, and conversation in Hebrew. It expands the knowledge of the above, while emphasizing reading, writing, and class discussions of modern literary works as well as some classical religious texts. It integrates textbooks’ material with Hebrew videos and films, short stories and songs. Students who feel qualified to take this course, but have not taken Elementary Hebrew at Bryn Mawr, are encouraged to discuss it with the instructor. This is a year-long course.
Requirement(s): Language Level 2
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2013-14)

HEBR B102 Intermediate Hebrew
The course is designed for students who took the Elementary Hebrew course in Bryn Mawr or its equivalents in other institutions, assuming basic fluency in reading, writing, grammar, syntax, and conversation in Hebrew. It expands the knowledge of the above, while emphasizing reading, writing, and class discussions of modern literary works as well as some classical religious texts. It integrates textbooks’ material with Hebrew videos and films, short stories and songs. Students who feel qualified to take this course, but have not taken Elementary Hebrew at Bryn Mawr, are encouraged to discuss it with the instructor. This is a year-long course.
Requirement(s): Language Level 2
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2013-14)

HEBR B110 Israeli Cinema
The course traces the evolution of the Israeli cinema from ideologically charged visual medium to a universally recognized film art, as well as the emergent Palestinian cinema and the new wave of Israeli documentaries. It will focus on the historical, ideological, political, and cultural changes in Israeli and Palestinian societies and their impact on films’ form and content.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Cross-Cultural Analysis (CC); Critical Interpretation (CI)
Counts towards: Film Studies; Middle East Studies
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2013-14)

HEBR B115 Women in Judaism: History, Texts, Practices
This course will investigate the varied experiences of women in Jewish history. Cultural, religious, and theoretical perspectives will be engaged as we seek to illuminate the roles, practices, and texts of Jewish women, from the biblical matriarchs to Hasidic teenagers today. No previous knowledge of Judaism is required.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Inquiry into the Past (IP)
Counts towards: Gender and Sexuality Studies
Crosslisting(s): HIST-B115
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2013-14)

HEBR B211 Primo Levi, the Holocaust and Its Aftermath
A consideration, through analysis and appreciation of his major works, of how the horrific experience of the Holocaust awakened in Primo Levi a growing awareness of his Jewish heritage and led him to become one of the dominant voices of that tragic historical event, as well as one of the most original new literary figures of post-World War II Italy. Always in relation to Levi and his works, attention will also be given to other Italian women writers whose works are also connected with the Holocaust.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Approach: Cross-Cultural Analysis (CC)
Crosslisting(s): ITAL-B211; COML-B211
Units: 1.0
(Fall 2013)

HEBR B271 Topics in Judaic Studies
What happened in Jewish history between antiquity and the modern era, between composing the Talmud and receiving citizenship in European nations? As we try to understand how Jews got from there to here, this seminar will explore the diverse and sometimes astonishing forms of Jewish life in the medieval and early modern periods (approximately 1000-1800), with special focus on the evolution of Jewish relations with the majority culture. Topics will include the golden age of Jewry in Muslim Spain, the development of European anti-Jewish policies and persecutions, Jewish self-government, and cosmopolitanism, as well as many of the philosophers, mystics and would-be messiahs who sparked religious movements and change in the course of these tumultuous centuries.
Counts towards: Middle East Studies
Crosslisting(s): HIST-B273
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2013-14)

HEBR B283 Introduction to the Politics of the Modern Middle East and North Africa
This course is a multidisciplinary approach to understanding the politics of the region, using works of history, political science, political economy, film, and fiction as well as primary sources. The course will concern itself with three broad areas: the legacy of colonialism and the importance of international forces; the role of Islam in politics; and the political and social effects of particular economic conditions, policies, and practices.
Requirement(s): Division I: Social Science
Approach: Cross-Cultural Analysis (CC)
Counts towards: Middle East Studies
Crosslisting(s): POLS-B283; HIST-B283
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Rudy,S.
(Spring 2014)

HEBR B310 Topics in German Literature
This is a topics course. Topics vary. One additional hour of target language instruction TBA.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): GERM-B310
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2013-14)

HEBR B380 Topics in Contemporary Art
This is a topic course. Course content varies.
Requirement(s): Division III: Humanities
Crosslisting(s): HART-B380; GERM-B380
Units: 1.0
(Not Offered 2013-14)

HEBR B403 Supervised Work
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Dept. staff, TBA
(Fall 2013)

HEBR B403 Supervised Work
Units: 1.0
Instructor(s): Dept. staff, TBA
(Spring 2014)