Fall 2014 Community Education Courses

View courses by discipline:

Bible
Cantorial

Hebrew (online)
History
Jewish Thought

BIBLE
 

COURSE TITLE

COURSE NO. INSTRUCTOR TIME CREDITS

King David in the Bible, Jewish Tradition and Modern Scholarship
Syllabus 

CG BIBLE 528 Schimmel Th, 11:15 am-1:15 pm non-credit only

Was David, the second king of Israel, a saint or a sinner, a hero or a villain, or all of these? This course will focus on how David is depicted in the books of Samuel and 1 Kings and in other biblical texts. We will compare the biblical portrayal of David with that of modern scholarship and also look at some rabbinic texts about David to see how he is transformed from the complex and often far from saintly biblical character into a paragon of rabbinic spirituality. Some of the texts will be studied in Hebrew and others in English translation. The ability to read basic Hebrew is recommended.

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CANTORIAL
         

COURSE TITLE

COURSE NO.

INSTRUCTOR

TIME

CREDITS

How to Chant Torah
Syllabus 

CG CANTR 528

Schwartz

Online

non-credit only

In this online course, students learn the history and analysis of the punctuation system underlying the chanting of the Hebrew Bible. Through audio coaching, students learn a traditional Ashkenazic mode for the public cantillation of the Torah and correct contemporary pronunciation of biblical Hebrew. Prerequisite: facility with reading Hebrew. Cantorial students may audit only; will not count for graduate credit for master's students in the cantorial program.

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HEBREW (ONLINE)
         

All classes require purchase of a standard Hebrew-English dictionary. All online Hebrew classes use Ivrit Min Hahatchala (Hebrew from Scratch) as textbook either Volume 1 or Volume 2. See individual course description.

All courses are offered September 8th through December 19, 2014

COURSE TITLE

COURSE NO.

INSTRUCTOR

TIME

CREDITS

Mekhina (Preparation) for Hebrew Language 

CU HEBRW 010

Levy

Online

non-credit only

This course is designed to serve as an introduction to Hebrew language study and to ensure that students with some prior Hebrew study experience begin Modern Hebrew I at comparable levels. The Mekhina introduces the Hebrew alphabet and vowels, as well as verbs and syntax sufficient for conducting simple daily conversation. Students work at their own pace, submitting oral and written homework, and taking online quizzes. Weekly real-time class discussions are conducted by the instructor with small groups of students at comparable levels. The Mekhina is based on the seven introductory units of Ivrit Min Hahatchala (Hebrew from Scratch), the textbook used by Hebrew College‚Äôs campus-based and online Hebrew Language programs. Textbook: Ivrit Min Hahatchala (Hebrew from Scratch), Vol. 1. Mekhina will cover the Introductory units of the textbook. Prerequisite: No prior knowledge of Hebrew is required.

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HISTORY
         

COURSE TITLE

 COURSE NO.

INSTRUCTOR

TIME

CREDITS

Text and Context: Biblical and Rabbinical Periods
Syllabus 

CG HIST 541

Mesch

Online

non-credit only

In this course, we will encounter the Tanakh and Rabbinic literature and the cultures and civilizations in which they developed. We will read substantial portions of original texts (in translation) along with key secondary sources to provide students with a framework through which they can gain understanding of the key issues and concepts that underlie these texts and their history. We will also be attentive to the variety of ways that the Bible and Rabbinic literature are read and interpreted. There are no prerequisites for this class; it will be taught as an introductory course for graduate students and as an introduction to graduate work in Jewish Studies.

The Eastern European Era: New Approaches to Understanding the Development of Jewish Life in Europe
Syllabus

CG HIST 533 Liekis Online non-credit only

The study of Eastern European Jewry has benefited from renewed interest and new capabilities following the collapse of the Soviet Union and the re-emergence of the independent states of East-Central Europe. Conditions of censorship and restricted access have given way to new scholarly initiatives and renewed support. This course will focus on the following themes: a) the specific character of the Jewry of East-Central Europe including religious, cultural, intellectual, political and economic history; b) relations between Jews and non-Jews from the later 18th century under a variety of ruling empires up to recent developments of independence and the revival of Jewish life; c) contemporary attempts to engage the Jewish past by both Jews and non-Jews and attempts to come to terms with the difficult legacy of the Holocaust. The course will also explore the nature of the archival resources now available for genealogical research in the context of gaining a deeper understanding of the social and personal history of the Jewish community.

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JEWISH THOUGHT
         

COURSE TITLE

 COURSE NO.

INSTRUCTOR

TIME

CREDITS

Rational Ideal and its Opponents: Four Medieval Jewish Philosophers
Syllabus

CG JTHT 519

Mesch

Tu, 11:30 am-1 pm

3

This course will focus on the writings of four of the most influential writers and leaders of the Jewish middle ages: Saadya Gaon, Yehuda Halevi, Moses Maimonides (Rambam), and Nachmanides (Ramban). Saadya and Rambam were rationalists who believed in the ultimate importance of reason and its relevance to religion and to Judaism. Halevi, the poet and thinker, taught that while reason is important and useful, it is not essential for achieving the ultimate goal and purpose of religion. The Ramban, a great Jewish thinker, was a mystic, rationalist, leader, poet and defender of Judaism. He tried to take a middle course. The course will address how these individuals functioned as leaders and how their overall understanding of Judaism affected their approach to community and leadership.

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