Judaic Studies

GJSN 100 The Jewish Heritage (4 Credits)

An overview of the historical developments of Jewish culture, values and practices.

GJSN 101 Introduction to Bible I (4 Credits)

This course provides an analysis of selections from the Pentateuch for its religious, historical, and moral significance.

GJSN 102 Introduction to Bible II (4 Credits)

Students will analyze selections from the prophets using archaeological information, combined with medieval and modern commentary.

GJSN 103 Introduction to Bible III (4 Credits)

This is a survey of the Hagiographia. Selected chapters from Psalms, Job, Ecclesiastics, Proverbs, Song of Songs and Lamentations are read and analyzed in class. Special attention is given to Biblical passages that have played a key role in Western civilization. Among the themes discussed are prayer, justice, morality, theodicy, sin and repentance.

GJSN 110 History of Old Testament Period (4 Credits)

This course offers a history of the Hebrews from earliest times down to the Hasmonean era. Topics covered are: Hebrew origins, the Israelite Empire, the Divided Kingdom, the Babylonian Exile, the Restoration, Hellenism, and the Hasmonean Kingdom.

GJSN 124 Modern Jewish History: 1750-Present (4 Credits)

Students will inquire into: the major movements and developments including the rise of the Hassidic movement, Jewish emancipation in Germany, France, and America; renaissance of Jewish scholarship; torment in Eastern Europe which stimulated mass immigration to America; religious divisiveness in Europe and America; Germany, anti-Semitism, the rise of Zionism; World Wars I and II; and the modern State of Israel.

GJSN 141 Introduction to Jewish Law Daily Life Cycle (1.5 Credits)

Study of the rituals of the Jewish daily life cycle utilizing classical and modern legal literature.

GJSN 225 Modern Israel (3 Credits)

This course will explore the roots of Zionism in religious tradition and the strings of modern nationalism which gave it a political form. Emphasis will be placed on Theodore Herzl, Chaim Weizmann, Zev Zabotinsky and Ben Gurion, the early Zionist congress, the rise of the State of Israel, the kibbutz, the cultural developments with emphasis on great writers, the role or religion in the state, Arab-Jewish confrontation and other contemporary problems.

GJSN 257 The Literature of the Mussar Movement (1.5 Credits)

Study of selections from medieval and modern Jewish ethical literature. In addition to examination of classical texts such as Hovot ha-Levavot, Sha’arei Teshuva, Sefer Hasidim, and Mesillat Yesharim, the course will focus upon the development of the Mussar movement as reflected in the writings of Rabbi Israel Salanter and his disciples.

GJSN 262 History of the Holocaust (Also offered as GHS 262) (3 Credits)

The role of Nazism in the destruction of European Jewry, 1933-1945, is studied with special attention to the reactions of world Jewry and foreign governments to the catastrophe. Ghetto and concentration camp existence and the Jewish resistance movements are also covered. The literature and history writing of the Holocaust are included.

GJSN 271 American Jewish History (also offered as GHS 271) (3 Credits)

Study of the Sephardic legacy; German Jewish migration and influence; the development of religious communities, the impact of the Civil War, migrations from Eastern Europe, acculturation and assimilation, responses to the Holocaust and Zionism. The social, economic and religious structures of the modern Jewish community will be analyzed as well.

GJSN 301 Jewish Ethics (3 Credits)

In this course, we will examine the basics texts of Jewish ethics. The student will be introduced to the interdisciplinary concerns of [a] ethical theory, [b] the reading and understanding of classical Jewish texts and [c] the world construction of Judaism in its classical formulation.

Prerequisite: GJSN 100 or permission of the Department

GJSN 354 Issues in Contemporary Jewish Thought (1.5 Credits)

Psychological and Jewish images of man; the challenge of Kantian, existential, and contextual ethics; Jewish morality and the sexual revolution; Jewish social justice; activism and messianism; the Zionist quest. Prerequisite: Junior standing.

GJSN 361 Topics in Jewish Law: Medical Ethics (3 Credits)

Intensive analysis of bio-ethical issues as treated in Jewish Laws.

GJSN 400 Topics in Judaic Studies (1-4 Credits)

Study of selected topics in Judaic Studies.

GJSN 402 Topics in Jewish Law- Contemporary Problems (1.5 Credits)

Contemporary problems in Jewish law with emphasis on those created by scientific and technological development.

Prerequisite: JML 401

GJSN 432 Topics in Jewish Law: Contemporary Problems (1.5 Credits)

Intensive study in responsa dealing with scientific and technological developments.