Jewish Studies

The goal of this secondary field pathway is to provide a basic exposure to fundamental elements of the history, literature, religious thought, and legal institutions of Jewish civilization. As in other areas of undergraduate liberal arts education, and even more so in a secondary field of five courses, our goal is not to impart comprehensive knowledge of an entire academic field, but rather to ensure that students will have a basic framework for asking questions and tools for seeking answers.

A combination of a historical survey (“Jews, Judaism, and Jewishness: A History”) focusing heavily on the pre-modern experiences of the Jews, with a course about modern Jewish history or literature and additional courses in different specific areas provide secondary field students with an exposure to Jewish culture through the ages, equipping them with a basic familiarity with Jewish culture, history, and literature.

Requirements: 5 half-courses

  1. Two "gateway" courses:

    1. Jewish Studies 55: Jews, Judaism, and Jewishness

    2. One survey of either modern Jewish history or modern Jewish literature (currently Historical Studies A-44: Jews in Modern Times: From the French Revolution to the Emergence of Israel; Jewish Studies 143:Jews in the Modern World; or Lit and Arts A-48: Modern Jewish Literature).

  1. Three additional half courses in Jewish Studies, at least two of which must be at the 100 level or above.

  2. Students are free to pick from any three courses in Jewish Studies offered in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations or elsewhere, these courses to be approved by the director of undergraduate studies or his/her designee. Qualified students are encouraged to consider taking their elective courses in languages important to the study of Jewish cultures (Hebrew, Yiddish, Aramaic; these can be either language or literature courses). However, no more than two of these courses may be courses whose primary focus is language instruction.