Director's Letter

Eric L. Goldstein
Eric L. Goldstein, Judith London Evans Director of the Tam Institute for Jewish Studies

Once again, we take a moment to reflect on the accomplishments and intellectual experiences of the past year at the Tam Institute for Jewish Studies (TIJS), even as we are already immersed in the activities of the new year.

The fall 2012 screening of the documentary From Silence to Recognition: Confronting Discrimination in Emory's Dental School History, produced by David Hughes Duke and John Duke, and the public apology by President James Wagner to Jewish students who suffered from anti-Semitic policies at the school, has led to the creation of the Brickman-Levin Fund in the James T. Laney School of Graduate Studies. Honoring S. Perry Brickman, whose efforts spearheaded the documentary, and Arthur Levin, the former Anti-Defamation League southeastern regional director who documented the pattern of discrimination and took his findings to Emory President Walter Martin more than 50 years ago, the fund will support the work of graduate students in Jewish studies. You may read more about this fund and donate directly here.

The highlight of the year, which Emory PhD graduate Zev Farber reports on, was the combined Tenenbaum Lecture by William G. Dever and symposium honoring our own Oded Borowski. TIJS also sponsored or cosponsored a number of other academic events throughout the year. Though on leave, visiting DAAD Professor Cornelia Wilhelm organized the symposium "Migration, Memory, and Diversity in Germany," working with Emory's Halle Institute with support from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). This fall, Wilhelm returns to Emory for the final two years of her visiting appointment. The Judith London Evans Fund supported the workshop "Rethinking Sport in the Americas," hosted by Jeffrey Lesser and former visiting professor Raanan Rein. Our own Jacob Wright presented a seminar on e-publishing, highlighting his newly published multimedia ebook titled King David's Reign Revisited, and gave an evening lecture on new insights into King David's time. The print version of Wright's book appeared this past spring as David, King of Israel, and Caleb in Biblical Memory, published by Cambridge University Press.

This year's Rabbi Jacob M. Rothschild Memorial Seminar speaker was Lila Corwin Berman of Temple University, speaking on the topic "American Jewish Politics IS Urban Politics," followed by an evening lecture, "American Jewish Spiritual Politics in the Postwar Urban Crisis." We were also pleased to host poet and literary critic Adam Kirsch to complete the seminar series; his talk was titled "A Career in Jewish Reading and Writing." Kirsch also presented an evening lecture asking, "Was Proust a Jewish Writer?"

TIJS faculty continue to achieve at a high scholarly level. The Faculty News section of this newsletter highlights some of those achievements—an honorary degree to David R. Blumenthal, Deborah Lipstadt's participation in a conference on genocide in Rwanda—and welcomes exciting visiting faculty for 2014–2015. Religion graduate student Michael Karlin has given us a scholarly profile of our colleague Don Seeman, and community member and longtime supporter Suzi Brozman wrote the article about Jacob Wright's groundbreaking online teaching through Coursera.

We are proud of the achievements of our students, particularly those who are graduating this year with PhDs in a variety of fields of Jewish studies. We also welcomed four new TIJS graduate fellows this year. Read about the achievements of our students here.

We are excited about plans for the coming year, which you can view from the TIJS website at In particular, we are pleased to be hosting the scholarly conference "Jews, Text, and Ethnography," which is being organized by Don Seeman in spring 2015. The conference will bring together scholars of the newly emerging field of textual ethnography and will result in publication of presented papers.

As always, we are grateful to all of those who contribute to our programs. Click here to see a complete listing of this past year's donors.

We look forward to greeting you at a TIJS event during the coming year.

Eric L. Goldstein
Judith London Evans Director of TIJS


FALL 2014

Thanks to Our Donors

Thanks to our donorsWe are grateful to the friends of TIJS for their generous donations that make so many of our programs possible.


Fall 2014

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The Tam Institute for Jewish Studies publishes an annual newsletter documenting the activities and achievements of our faculty, students, alumni, and the program as a whole.

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Annual Tenenbaum Lecture Is Keynote to Borowski Symposium

Tenenbaum lectureA symposium to honor Emory's Oded Borowski was timed to coincide with the Tenenbaum Lecture—delivered this year by William G. Dever, one of Borowski's mentors.


TIJS Hosts 2014 American Jewish Historical Society Conference

AJHS ConferenceWith Emory serving as host, the Biennial Scholars' Conference held in June attracted 100 academics from around the world.




Laney Graduate School Announces Brickman-Levin Fund
Important to the university's healing from anti-Semitism at the dental school, the fund ensures that Jewish studies remains permanently part of the graduate curriculum.

Congratulations to New PhDs
With every best wish, we congratulate our new PhDs—Ira Bedzoe, Ryan Bonfiglio, Craig Perry, Nehemia Stern, and Anne Stewart—and wish them well in their careers.

TIJS Faculty Highlights
Read about David R. Blumenthal's honorary degree and Deborah Lipstadt's keynote at the Rwandan genocide conference,
as well as welcome TIJS visiting scholars for 2014–2015.

2014 Blumenthal Awards
Congratulations to Carrie Crawford and Katherine Howard (graduate) and Avi Dobrusin (undergraduate).

Student News: TIJS Welcomes New Graduate Fellows
The newest graduate fellows are Rahimjon Abdugafurov, Collin Cornell, Lisa Hoelle, and Justin Pannkuk.

Thanks to Our Donors
You can assist the future growth of the program through endowment giving. To learn more, contact Michelle Clark at






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