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Courses - Fall 2021
JWST
Jewish Studies Department Site
JWST141
American Jewish Experience
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
CORE: SH
GenEd: DSHS, DVUP
Cross-listed with HIST106.
Credit only granted for: HIST106 or JWST141.
History of the Jews in America from Colonial times to the present. Emphasis on the waves of migration from Germany and Eastern Europe; the changing nature of the American Jewish community and its participation in American social, economic, and political life.
JWST171
Is Judaism a Religion?
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
CORE: HL, D
GenEd: DSHU, DVUP, SCIS
Cross-listed with: RELS171.
Credit only granted for: JWST171 or RELS171.
Jewish identity can be framed in terms of ethnicity, culture, and religious practice, but also in terms of more contemporary social constructions including social action, political engagement, and intellectual pursuit. In the context of such diverse social and individual frames, what does it mean to identify Judaism as a religion? Attention to Jewish society in historical and global perspective will provide a backdrop for a particular focus on contemporary Jews in the United States and Israel.
JWST187
God, Land, Power, and the People: Moral Issues in the Jewish Historical Experience
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg
GenEd: DSHS or DSHU, DVUP, SCIS
Cross-listed with: HIST187.
Credit only granted for: HIST187 or JWST187.
Examines the complicated relationship between theology, nationalism, sovereignty, and the ethical exercise of social control using case studies drawn from the Jewish historical experience. The universal and age-old issues implicit in the exercise of power have gained special moral force for Jews with the creation of the State of Israel, a Jewish and a democratic state with substantial non-Jewish minorities and hundreds of thousands of non-citizen subjects. Can these be reconciled? Jewish efforts over the ages and in recent times to define justice provide concrete examples through which to examine and discuss crucial abstract principles.
JWST219G
Zionism and Sexual Revolution
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
CORE: HL
GenEd: DSHU
Cross-listed with: ISRL249N.
Credit only granted for: ISRL249N or JWST219G.
In this course we will look at changes within European Jewish communities that influenced the development of particular fantasies about and representations of gender, love, and sex, and we will examine the ideological import of these ideas within the context of attempts to construct new forms of societies and relationships in Palestine and Israel.
Cross-listing with: ISRL249N. Credit only granted for: ISRL249N or JWST219G.

In this course we will look at changes within European Jewish communities that influenced the development of particular fantasies about and representations of gender, love, and sex. Also, we will examine the ideiological import of these ideas within the context of attempts to construct new forms of societies and relationships in Palestine and Israel.
JWST262
Introduction to the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
CORE: HL
GenEd: DSHU
Cross-listed with: ENGL262, HEBR298B.
Credit only granted for: JWST262, HEBR293B, or ENGL262.
Origins of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament), with attention to literary formations, archaeology, and social-political settings. Explorations of major questions, including who wrote the Bible, and when; relationships of the biblical tradition to the mythology and religious structures of ancient Israel's near eastern neighbors; and dynamics of politics, religious leadership, and law.
JWST272
Diversify and Multiply: Jewish Culture and the Production of an Identity
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
CORE: HL
GenEd: DSHU, DVUP
Cross-listed with: CMLT242, ISRL249G.
Credit only granted for: JWST272, CMLT242, or ISRL249G.
Provides students with a unique exploration of cultural products produced by a diverse array of Jewish creators of literature, comedy and film. The texts, films, and performing arts touch on the central social, economic, and cultural issues of Jews during the ages, and up to the 21st century. This course will explore Jewish creativity throughout history, as well as the Jewish encounter with modernity as a whole. We will be diving into prominent creators such as Tiffany Haddish, Larry David, Sholem Aleichem, Adam Sandler, S. Y. Abramovitsch, Judd Apatow, Philip Roth, Amy Schumer, I. B. Singer, Ben Stiller, Franz Kafka, Dan Levy, and others. Examining their creations will open a window to the diverse methods of construction of modern Jewish identities.
JWST274
Jerusalem in Antiquity: The History of Sacred Space in a Holy City
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
GenEd: DSHU, DVUP, SCIS
Cross-listed with: RELS274.
Credit only granted for: JWST274, RELS274, JWST289J or RELS289J.
Formerly: JWST289J, RELS289J.
Examines the complex history of Jerusalem's status as a holy city, with a focus on constructions of sacred space in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
JWST281
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
Introduction to the Yiddish language, with emphasis on speaking, reading, and writing skills. Students will also learn the history of the language, its significance to Jewish culture, its origins and basic structure.
This is a Big-Ten Academic Alliance Course-Share Course.
JWST289E
Civil Discourse or Urban Riot: Why Cities Don't (Often) Explode
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
GenEd: DSHS, DVUP, SCIS
Cross-listed with: HIST135.
Credit only granted for: HIST135 or JWST289E.
An examination of the mechanisms that promote peaceful co-existence in urban societies and a discussion of how and why city streets sometimes become violent.
JWST319V
Special Topics in Jewish Studies; Religious & Political Transformations in Modern Jewish History
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
Cross-listed with HIST329F. Credit only granted for HIST329F or JWST319V.

This course will analyze the social, cultural, and political forces that led to the emancipation of the Jews the granting to them of equal rights with all other inhabitants of the countries in which they lived and the integration of a once-detested ethnic-religious group into European society. The focus of the course will be Europe from 1650 to 1870.
JWST319Y
Archaeological Methods and Practice
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg
GenEd: DSHS
Prerequisite: ANTH240, ARTH200, or CLAS180.
Cross-listed with: ANTH305, ARTH305, CLAS305.
Credit only granted for: ANTH305, ARTH305, CLAS305, or JWST319Y.
A team-taught, interdisciplinary course discussing theories, methods, and ethical issues in the practice of archaeology.
JWST370
Before the Holocaust: The Golden Age of Eastern European Jewry
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
GenEd: DSHS, DVUP
Cross-listed with: HIST419Q.
Credit only granted for: JWST419E, JWST370, or HIST419Q.
Formerly: JWST419E.
An exploration of the history of the Jews of Eastern Europe from the period of the Polish Lithuanian Commonwealth until the Holocaust. Topics to be covered include religious, political, social, and cultural transformation of Jewish life in Eastern Europe in the context of the general political changes in the area.
Jointly offered with HIST419Q. Credit granted for JWST370 or HIST419Q.
JWST409A
Research Seminar in Jewish Studies; Literature and Jewish Life in Eastern Europe
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
GenEd: DSSP
We will read and discuss literary works by different authors describing Jewish life in Eastern Europe, and examine their contribution to the myths, images, and historiography of Eastern European Jewry. Scholarly articles will help us analyze the specific historical conditions that served as background for the different literary works.
JWST418
(Perm Req)
Honors Thesis Research in Jewish Studies
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg
Contact department for information to register for this course.
JWST429B
Classical Arabic Philosophy by Muslims, Jews, and Christians
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
GenEd: DSHU
Recommended: A class in philosophy.
Cross-listed with: PHIL428B.
Credit only granted for: PHIL428B or JWST429B.
The philosophical tradition in the Islamic world includes such important thinkers as al-Kindi, al-Farabi, Avicenna, al-Ghazali, Judah ha-Levy, Averroes, and Maimonides. In this seminar, works of, among others, these philosophers are read, with a view to the background of the debates in Islamic theology (kalam) and the transmission of ancient Greek philosophy in the Arabic language. Unlike most courses on this topics, we will speak of the Jewish (and some Christian) contribution to Arabic philosophy. In fact, a particular interest will be understanding how minority cultures appropriate philosophical doctrines and reinterpret their tradition in its light.
Cross-listed with PHIL428B. Credit only granted for JWST429B or PHIL428B.

An introduction to classical Arabic philosophy from the ninth to the thirteenth centuries of the Christian era. But unlike most courses on this topic, we shall not be reading philosophy solely by Muslims but also by Jews (and maybe Christians). In a sense, the course is best described by the title of the book by Dimitri Gutas, "Greek Thought, Arabic Culture".
JWST499
(Perm Req)
Independent Study in Jewish Studies; Independent Study in Jewish Studies
Credits: 1 - 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
Prerequisite: permission of department.
Contact department for information to register for this course.
JWST609
(Perm Req)
Supervised Instruction-Practicum in Jewish Studies
Credits: 1
Grad Meth: S-F
Contact department for information to register for this course.
JWST799
(Perm Req)
Masters Thesis Research
Credits: 1 - 6
Grad Meth: S-F
Prerequisite: permission of department.
Contact department for information to register for this course.