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Courses - Fall 2024
JWST
Jewish Studies Department Site
Open Seats as of
07/19/2024 at 10:30 PM
JWST141
American Jewish Experience
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
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
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.
JWST225
Religions of the Ancient Near East
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
GenEd: DSHU
Cross-listed with: RELS225, HIST219I.
Credit only granted for: JWST225, HIST219I, RELS225, or RELS219A.
Formerly: RELS219A.
Introduction to ancient Near Eastern religious systems and mythology, from the third millennium BCE through the fourth century BCE. Particular emphasis on Mesopotamia and ancient Israel.
JWST262
Introduction to the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
GenEd: DSHU
Cross-listed with: ENGL262, HEBR298B.
Credit only granted for: JWST262, HEBR298B, 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
GenEd: DSHU, DVUP
Cross-listed with: CMLT242.
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.
JWST275
Urban Dreams and Nightmares: The Jewish Experience of Cities
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
GenEd: DSHS, DVUP
Cross-listed with: HIST286.
Credit only granted for: HIST286 or JWST275.
Cities give expression to man's power while they highlight human limitations. It is urban social diversity that makes great wealth and thriving culture possible, but it also fixes discrimination behind walls constructed from paper and stone. Nations make cities symbols of the sacred and the glorious, while they ignore the poverty and social alienation that city life breeds. Jews, intensively urbanized for millennia, provide a special vantage point from which to study the beauty and the tragedy implicit in city-building. Our sources will include the Bible, poems, plays and novels but also US Supreme Court rulings and news of riots in Israel. We will survey how Jews have shaped, and been shaped by, the urban challenge over time and space.
JWST281
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
Cross-listed with: GERS141.
Credit only granted for: JWST281, GERM148Y or GERS141.
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.
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.
JWST319X
Special Topics in Jewish Studies; History of Antisemitism
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
Cross-listed with HIST329R. Credit only granted for HIST329R or JWST319X.

Hatred of the Jews has a long history, stretching from antiquity to the present. Based on many causes -- religious animosity, economic challenges, racial fears, political anxieties -- antisemitism may have waxed and waned over the past two thousand years, but it has proven a remarkably resilient and often deadly concept. This course will examine the main claims of the antisemites from antiquity to the present, the causes for the emergence of antisemitic invective and behavior in different periods and places, and the ways Jews devised to cope with the threat that anti-Jewish hostility posed. We will focus on primary sources as well as scholarly analyses. Hopefully we will come to understand how different societies coped with an unusual religo-ethnic minority group and how that minority group understood its place in those societies.
JWST319Y
Archaeological Methods and Practice
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F
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.
JWST418
(Perm Req)
Honors Thesis Research in Jewish Studies
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg
Contact department for information to register for this course.
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.
JWST499A
(Perm Req)
Independent Study in Jewish Studies; The Archaeology of Jerusalem
Credits: 3
Grad Meth: Reg, P-F, Aud
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.