Interdisciplinary Studies

Jewish Studies Courses

JWST 10300 - Hebrew Scriptures 3A H HU LA

This course treats the books of the Bible critically as literature, as religious and moral texts, and as a source of sociological knowledge. It surveys the biblical literature, acquaints students with critical methods for the study of the Bible, situates the Bible within the literature and culture of the ancient Near East, and discusses the religion of ancient Israel. The course will deal with questions of history and archaeology and with questions of meaning: what the biblical text meant to its ancient readers and what meanings it has today. Cross-listed as RLST 10300. Students may not receive credit for both RLST 10300 and JWST 10300. 3 credits. (F,Y)

JWST 20100 - Jews in the Ancient and Medieval Worlds 1 G H HU LA

An introduction to Jewish history and the varieties of Jewish cultures and religious traditions in the ancient and medieval worlds, covering Jewish history from the period of the Second Temple (sixth century B.C.E.) to the expulsion from Spain in 1492. Prerequisites: One course in the humanities or social sciences. 3 credits. (F,O)

JWST 20200 - Jews in the Modern World 1 G H HU LA

A survey of world Jewish history from 1492 to the present, concentrating on the Middle East, Europe, North Africa, and the United States. Discussion of the expulsion from Spain, growth of Jewish communities in the Ottoman Empire and Eastern Europe, enlightenment and emancipation, European colonialism, migration to the Americas, anti-Semitism and the Holocaust, the state of Israel, and modern religious movements. Prerequisites: One course in the humanities or social sciences. 3 credits. (F,E)

JWST 20300 - Judaism 1 G HU LA

An introduction to Judaism with a focus on theology, ethics, and ritual practice. Readings include selected texts from the biblical, rabbinic, medieval, and modern periods. Theological and ethical issues include God, good and evil, covenant, death and afterlife, justice, and social responsibility. The course examines how these Jewish understandings are lived out through practices associated with birth and death; marriage and commitment; sexuality; and the life of study, prayer, and devotion. Cross-listed with RLST 20300. Students may not receive credit for both RLST 20300 and JWST 20300. Prerequisites: One course in the humanities or social sciences. 3 credits. (S,Y)

JWST 27500 - Selected Topics in Jewish Studies HU LA SS

Topics of special interest to students and teachers may be developed under this course heading. Prerequisites: One course in the humanities or social sciences. Further prerequisites may be added according to topic. This course may be repeated for credit when topics change. 1-3 credits. (IRR)

JWST 32300 - Gender and Sexuality in Judaism HU LA

Exploration of what it means to be a Jewish man or woman. The course addresses how Jewish gender roles have changed throughout history, as well as how contemporary Jews deal with changes in women's roles and demands for gender equality. Topics covered include what is "gender" and how to study it; traditional roles of men and women in Judaism; the gendered Jewish body; family and sexuality; homosexuality; Jewish feminism; the gender of God; and changing women's religious roles. Cross-listed with RLST 32300. Students may not receive credit for both RLST 32300 and JWST 32300. Prerequisites: Three courses in humanities or social sciences. 3 credits. (Y)

JWST 33300 - Jewish Mysticism HU LA

This course traces the history of Jewish mysticism. After a brief overview of early Jewish mysticism from the biblical and rabbinic periods, students will concentrate on the medieval flowering of Kabbalah, and its further development in the 16th-century Kabbalah of Safed and Israel and 18th-century Eastern European Hasidism. The emphasis will be placed on understanding both the theoretical and experiential aspects of Jewish mysticism and on examining some of the key texts of Jewish mysticism. Cross-listed with RLST 33300. Students may not receive credit for both RLST 33300 and JWST 33300. Prerequisites: Three courses in the humanities or social sciences. 3 credits. (Y)

JWST 34300 - Biblical Interpretation in Judaism and Christianity HU LA

Examines the theological and literary dimensions of reading the Bible in the Jewish and Christian traditions. Focuses on the comparative study of Jewish and Christian methodologies for interpreting the Bible. Prerequisites: Three courses in the humanities, at least one of which is in English, Jewish studies, or religious studies. 3 credits.

JWST 35300 - Jewish Folk Religion: Magic and Ritual Power HU LA

Traces the history of the Jewish tradition of ritual power from biblical antiquity through the Middle Ages and through its transformation in the modern world. Introduces students to the historical and anthropological study of magic and ritual power, and the relationship between magic and religion. Topics covered include the use of amulets and incantations for healing, the relationship between magic and Jewish mysticism, possession, and exorcism in the early modern world, and the persistence of the Jewish magical tradition in the modern era. Prerequisites: Three courses in the humanities or social sciences, including one from anthropology, Jewish studies, or religion (or permission from the instructor to waive the requirement). 3 credits. (IRR)

JWST 37500 - Selected Topics in Jewish Studies HU LA SS
JWST 37501 - Selected Topics in Jewish Studies HU LA SS

Topics of special interest to students and teachers may be developed under this course heading. Prerequisites: 3 courses in the humanities or social sciences. Further prerequisites may be added according to topic. This course may be repeated for credit when topics change. 1-3 credits. (IRR)

JWST 42000 - Internship: Jewish Studies NLA
JWST 42001 - Internship: Jewish Studies NLA

On-site work experience, combined with academic study, in agencies or educational institutions with significant Jewish content, such as Jewish schools or community agencies or multicultural groups. Arranged individually at the student's request with the individual instructor, a sponsoring agency, and permission of the Jewish studies coordinator. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor. 1-12 credits. (IRR)

JWST 49100 - Independent Study in Jewish Studies LA

Special research on an individual project arranged by a student with a particular faculty member. The project may include reading books and/or writing papers under the guidance of the faculty member, with a performance expectation of upper-level work. Offered on demand only. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor. 1-4 credits. (IRR)