Jewish Studies | Biblical Themes in Modern Hebrew Literature
L390 | 26925-29306 | S. Katz

JSTU-L 390 Biblical Themes in Modern Hebrew Literature (3 cr.)
Stephen Katz

TR 4:00-5:15 p.m. #26925

(15 seats have been reserved for Jewish Studies students in #29306.

Having trouble telling Cain from Abel without a program? Or what was
wrong with Moses bringing the Children of Israel out of Egypt? How
about a course which will guide you through selections from the
Bible so they stick in your mind and make you wonder?

In this course, we will focus on a number of stories from the Hebrew
Bible (though all readings will be done in English translation) to
contemplate specific issues. Our chief topics for the term include
the stories of Creation, the akeda (the binding of Isaac), and
the Exodus of the Israelites out of Egyptian bondage. Rather than
introduce you to biblical (higher) criticism, I plan to share with
you some modern works of Hebrew literature (also translated into
English) which either tell a tale set in biblical times or use
key lines and phrases from the Bible for purposes which we will try
to understand.

More than any, Hebrew literature is closely allied with the (Hebrew)
Bible. It not only shares a language to a degree not found in the
case of other modern languages as they refer to their ancient
literary sources, but it also identifies its accounts as especially
pertinent to contemporary times and circumstances. In many ways,
Hebrew literature has thus "rewritten" the Bible in the image of our
times. The specifics of this will be explored through the selections
we will read in class.

If you want to find out how modern writers of Hebrew literature see
how people lived in the times of the Bible, or why they saw that it
was only "natural" for Cain to kill his brother, or how Moses is re-
imagined by modern Hebrew writers, or who the real hero was in the
story of the Binding of Isaac (the akeda), come and join us.

Final grades for the course will be based on attendance, quizzes, a
midterm, and a final exam. Term papers will be optional, except for
graduate students.

Fulfills: For students matriculating BEFORE summer 2009 Language &
Literature or Religion & Thought course; For majors matriculating
BEGINNING summer 2009 can be used for Literature and the Arts or
Religion & Thought; can be used toward Minor in Hebrew if not used
for JS major or certificate; A&H, Culture Studies - List A