The Case for Reparations: Talmudic Texts in Conversation With Today’s America


Program: Hebrew College Open Circle Jewish Learning: Social Action
 Alona Weimer (Read bio)
Dates: February 21, 28, March 7, 14, 21, 28, 2023 (6 sessions)
Day and Time: Tuesdays, 7-8:30 p.m. Eastern Time
Location: Online via Zoom
Fee: $126

What do Talmudic texts reveal about a Jewish ethic of reparations? How can we read Jewish tradition as insisting upon collective redress of historic harms? What do Black and Indigenous activists mean when they say, “Reparations” and “Land Back?” How do rabbinic ideas about atonement and repair apply to the contemporary moment?

This course will engage with Talmudic texts alongside Black and Indigenous thinkers to articulate our collective obligation to intervene in the historic and ongoing theft of wealth, labor, and land. Using these framings, we will discuss what happens when we inherit a society built on stolen wealth, what Jewish history reveals about the emotional and political implications of reparations, and what communities are doing today to intervene. Students will examine the state of reparations in their own communities and make a plan for how they can engage in campaigns and learning on a local level.

Hebrew College Open Circle Jewish Learning is for learners of all backgrounds.