Anthropology | Modern Jewish Culture and Society
E600 | 23306 | Bahloul


What is the situation of the Jews worldwide in the beginning of the
21st century? A population of about 13 million scattered in the five
continents, concentrated in the dozen largest cities of the world, and
60 years after they have suffered genocide, Jews today are
experiencing major political, demographic, cultural, and religious
challenges. Students will reflect on these important issues by
examining the diverse forms of Jewish cultural expression, community
membership, and the multiple experiences of Judaism as a religion.
Discussions will investigate the diversity of Jewish cultures, the
ritual practices of contemporary Jews, their family structures, their
collective memory, and how they have reacted to dramatic demographic
changes and to secularization.  Students will also carry out a
fieldwork project that should give them an opportunity to have a
personal experience of Jewish ethnography.

Requirements: No exam, but a class diary, a fieldwork project, and
class participation are required.
Readings
Goldberg H (ed.), The Life of Judaism, Univ. of California Press,
2001
Kahn, S. 2000, Reproducing Jews, Duke Univ. Press
Mintz, J., 1992, Hasidic People, Harvard U. Press
Myerhoff, B., 1978, Number Our Days, New York: Simon & Schuster