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Courses

The Jewish studies department offers numerous undergraduate and graduate courses each semester.

Course Catalogs

For our current course offerings, visit Testudo.

For a complete list of undergraduate courses, please see the UMD Undergraduate Catalog.
For a complete list of graduate courses, please see the UMD Graduate Catalog.

JWST Courses

Lower Level Courses

JWST141 American Jewish Experience (3 Credits)

History of the Jews in America from Colonial times to the present. Emphasis on the waves of migration from Germany and Eastern Europe; the changing nature of the American Jewish community and its participation in American social, economic, and political life.Cross-listed with HIST106.

JWST171 Is Judaism a Religion? (3 Credits)

Jewish identity can be framed in terms of ethnicity, culture, and religious practice, but also in terms of more contemporary social constructions including social action, political engagement, and intellectual pursuit. In the context of such diverse social and individual frames, what does it mean to identify Judaism as a religion? Attention to Jewish society in historical and global perspective will provide a backdrop for a particular focus on contemporary Jews in the United States and Israel.Cross-listed with: RELS171.

JWST187 God, Land, Power, and the People: Moral Issues in the Jewish Historical Experience (3 Credits)

Examines the complicated relationship between theology, nationalism, sovereignty, and the ethical exercise of social control using case studies drawn from the Jewish historical experience. The universal and age-old issues implicit in the exercise of power have gained special moral force for Jews with the creation of the State of Israel, a Jewish and a democratic state with substantial non-Jewish minorities and hundreds of thousands of non-citizen subjects. Can these be reconciled? Jewish efforts over the ages and in recent times to define justice provide concrete examples through which to examine and discuss crucial abstract principles.Cross-listed with: HIST187.

JWST225 Religions of the Ancient Near East (3 Credits)

Introduction to ancient Near Eastern religious systems and mythology, from the third millennium BCE through the fourth century BCE. Particular emphasis on Mesopotamia and ancient Israel.Cross-listed with: RELS225, HIST219I.

JWST230 Inventing Traditions: The Making of Rabbinic Judaism (3 Credits)

Introduces the dramatic literary and cultural (as well as political and demographic) innovations that reshaped Judaism in late antiquity. Examines the fundamental works and genres of rabbinic literature and the religious movement that produced them. Special emphasis on the rabbinic uses of "tradition" to enhance authority and legitimacy, and to foster group identity.Cross-listed with: HIST281, RELS230.

JWST231 Jewish Texts and Cultures of the Second Temple Period (3 Credits)

An introduction to the literature, history, and culture of Jews in the period between the sixth century BCE and the second century CE. Special topics may include the rise of the formation of the biblical canon, scriptural interpretation, sectarian and revolutionary movements, and growth of the diaspora.

JWST233 Why the Jews? Historical and Cultural Investigations (3 Credits)

Examines the history and culture of the Jews from the thirteenth century BCE/BC to the present through an examination of significant themes or problems (such as "religion" or "diaspora") that shape our understanding of the Jewish people. A primary focus in the course will be on texts, artifacts, and other cultural products by Jews and others that illustrate the history of the Jews help understand their cultural heritage.

JWST235 History of the Jewish People II (3 Credits)

Political, economic, social and cultural development within Jewish history from the end of the Middle Ages to the present. Special attention to the twentieth century developments including the Nazi Holocaust and its aftermath, the Zionist movement and the creation of the State of Israel, and the rise of the contemporary American-Jewish community.

JWST250 Fundamental Concepts of Judaism (3 Credits)

A conceptional introduction to Judaism, analyzing its fundamental concepts from both analytical and historical perspectives. Discussion of "normative" Judaism as well as other conceptions of Judaism. Topics include: God, the Jewish people, authority, ethics, the sacred and the profane, particularism and universalism.Cross-listed with PHIL234, RELS250.

JWST260 Introduction to Classical Hebrew I (3 Credits)

Readings of the Bible and other classical texts in original Hebrew. Emphasis on classical grammar and vocabulary, and reading of textual passages.

Prerequisite: HEBR111; or students who have taken courses with comparable content may contact the department.

JWST262 Introduction to the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament (3 Credits)

Origins of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament), with attention to literary formations, archaeology, and social-political settings. Explorations of major questions, including who wrote the Bible, and when; relationships of the biblical tradition to the mythology and religious structures of ancient Israel's near eastern neighbors; and dynamics of politics, religious leadership, and law.Cross-listed with: ENGL262, HEBR298B.

JWST272 Diversify and Multiply: Jewish Culture and the Production of an Identity (3 Credits)

Provides students with a unique exploration of cultural products produced by a diverse array of Jewish creators of literature, comedy and film. The texts, films, and performing arts touch on the central social, economic, and cultural issues of Jews during the ages, and up to the 21st century. This course will explore Jewish creativity throughout history, as well as the Jewish encounter with modernity as a whole. We will be diving into prominent creators such as Tiffany Haddish, Larry David, Sholem Aleichem, Adam Sandler, S. Y. Abramovitsch, Judd Apatow, Philip Roth, Amy Schumer, I. B. Singer, Ben Stiller, Franz Kafka, Dan Levy, and others. Examining their creations will open a window to the diverse methods of construction of modern Jewish identities.Cross-listed with: CMLT242, ISRL249G.

JWST274 Jerusalem in Antiquity: The History of Sacred Space in a Holy City (3 Credits)

Examines the complex history of Jerusalem's status as a holy city, with a focus on constructions of sacred space in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.Cross-listed with: RELS274.

JWST275 The Jew and the City through the Centuries (3 Credits)

Jewish urban experience from ancient times to the present. Public space and private. The city and the sacred. Jewish ghettos and quarters. The struggle over modern Jerusalem.Cross-listed with HIST286.

JWST281 Yiddish I (3 Credits)

Introduction to the Yiddish language, with emphasis on speaking, reading, and writing skills. Students will also learn the history of the language, its significance to Jewish culture, its origins and basic structure.

JWST282 Elementary Yiddish II (3 Credits)

Continuation of JWST281.

Prerequisite: JWST281; or permission of ARHU-Meyerhoff Program & Center for Jewish Studies.

JWST289E Civil Discourse or Urban Riot: Why Cities Don't (Often) Explode (3 Credits)

An examination of the mechanisms that promote peaceful co-existence in urban societies and a discussion of how and why city streets sometimes become violent.Cross-listed with: HIST135.

JWST298 Elementary/Introductory Language Module for Jewish Studies (1-3 Credits)

A supplementary language module for students enrolled in designated Jewish Studies classes. Language of instruction English, texts in original language.

JWST299 Independent Study in Jewish Studies (1-3 Credits)

This lower-level independent study allows students in to work closely with a Jewish Studies faculty member of their choice, pending the prior approval of the faculty member. In this independent study, students will focus on a topic specific to Jewish Studies.

Upper Level Courses

JWST304 Critical Approaches to Israeli Culture (3 Credits)

An examination of the intersections of literature, society, philosophy, and politics in the making of modern Israeli culture. Special attention will be paid to the Zionist emphasis on making "new" Jews and its implications when expressed in literature and society.

JWST314 Pedagogy and Instruction in the Hebrew Classroom (3 Credits)

An exploration of applied linguistic theory and issues in Hebrew teaching to current and future Hebrew and Judaic studies teachers. First and second language acquisition theories, past and present language teaching methodologies, effective approaches to teaching and testing in the four skill areas (listening, speaking, reading, and writing), as well as knowledge of the role of identity, context, and affective factors in Hebrew language learning. Taught in English.

JWST315 Culture and Identity in Jewish and Hebrew Education (3 Credits)

An in-depth examination of heterogeneous natures of various language learning settings. Social and psychological theories of second language and identity acquisition, anomie and language/identity attrition, and conflicts of class, religion, ethnicity, and power relations that affect Jewish and Hebrew education. Taught in English.

JWST319Y Archaeological Methods and Practice (3 Credits)

A team-taught, interdisciplinary course discussing theories, methods, and ethical issues in the practice of archaeology.

JWST324 Biblical History and Culture (3 Credits)

Study of the political, social, and religious development of the Jewish nation from its inception to its return from exile in Babylonia around 536 C.E. Focus on biblical texts, archeological finds, and source materials from neighboring cultures to reconstruct political history and the development of religious concepts.Cross-listed with: HIST321.

JWST325 Jews and Judaism in Antiquity I: Sixth Century BCE through the First Century CE (3 Credits)

Political, social, and religious history of the Jews from the Persian Period to the Judean Revolt of 66-70CE. Special attention to the rise of sectarian and revolutionary movements.Cross-listed with HIST370.

JWST326 Jews and Judaism in Antiquity II: First through Seventh Centuries (3 Credits)

Political, social, and religious history of the Jews from the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple in 70 CE to the Muslim conquests. Special attention to the political transformations in Judaism under late Roman Christianity, and the rise of the Rabbinic movement.Cross-listed with HIST371.

JWST331 Early Christianity: Jesus to Constantine (3 Credits)

Social and religious history of early Christianity from its origin in the first century to the reign of Constantine.

JWST333 Jews in Early Modern Times 1450-1750 (3 Credits)

Emergence of new powerful population centers, religious and cultural creativity, new forms of community, and radical messianic movements.

JWST341 American Jewish Literature (3 Credits)

An exploration of the role played by literature in the development of American Jewish ethnic identity. Primary materials include essays, poetry, plays, short stories, novels, films and music.Cross-listed with ENGL331.

JWST344 Modern Jewish History II: World Jewry Since 1870 (3 Credits)

Social, political, economic, and cultural change in the Jewish world since 1870. Emphasis on emancipation, assimilation, and new forms of Jewish identity in Western and Eastern European Jewry from the 19th Century to the present.Cross-listed with HIST375.

JWST345 The Holocaust of European Jewry (3 Credits)

Roots of Nazi Jewish policy in the 1930s and during World War II: the process of destruction and the implementation of the "final solution of the Jewish problem" in Europe, and the responses made by the Jews to their concentration and annihilation.Cross-listed with HIST307.

JWST346 Representing the Holocaust (3 Credits)

Different perspectives on how the Holocaust should be represented. Examination of a wide range of texts including fiction, memoirs, critical essays, poems and films in different languages (in translation). Emphasis on the international and comparative nature of Holocaust literary studies and investigation into the propriety of literary representation of historical catastrophe. Consideration of our own role as readers serving as witnesses to an event that has marked itself indelibly in the aesthetic history of the twentieth century.

JWST347 Tradition and Change: Jewish Religion in the Modern World (3 Credits)

An exploration of the history of the different modern Jewish religious movements that developed in Europe, starting with messianic movements and ending with Reform and Orthodoxy. Emphasis will be placed on the influence of the academic study of Judaism on the development of modern Jewish religious ideologies and practices.Cross-listed with: HIST429X, RELS347.

JWST370 Before the Holocaust: The Golden Age of Eastern European Jewry (3 Credits)

An exploration of the history of the Jews of Eastern Europe from the period of the Polish Lithuanian Commonwealth until the Holocaust. Topics to be covered include religious, political, social, and cultural transformation of Jewish life in Eastern Europe in the context of the general political changes in the area.Cross-listed with: HIST419Q.

JWST373 Sexuality in Jewish Literature and Culture (3 Credits)

Exploration of texts and films by Jewish authors and filmmakes, in their exploration of gender and sexuality. Texts and films touch on the central social, economic, and cultural issues of European, American, and Israeli Jewry during the middle ages, and up to the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Attention to Sholem Aleichem, Philip Roth, S. Y. Abramovitsch, Jill Soloway, Todd Solondz, Celia Dropkin, I. B. Singer, Sholem Ash, Boaz Davidson, Judd Apatow, Tseruyah Shalev, and others.

JWST386 Experiential Learning in Jewish Studies (3 Credits)

The Jewish Studies Program's internship program. Pre-professional experience in research, analysis, and writing related to Jewish Studies in a variety of work settings.

JWST408 Honors Seminar in Jewish Studies (3 Credits)

An in-depth exploration of a theme in Jewish history, literature, culture or thought. Course subject and readings will vary from year to year, but will generally cut across periods, locations, or disciplines. Students are expected to engage the course material critically and to use the seminar as an opportunity to develop an independent research agenda.

JWST409 Research Seminar in Jewish Studies (3-4 Credits)

A capstone course for Jewish Studies. Guides students through advanced source material and subject matter, research skills, and presentation techniques. A substantive paper based on independent research and analysis is one expected outcome.

JWST418 Honors Thesis Research in Jewish Studies (3-6 Credits)

Guided research on a thesis under the supervision of the Jewish Studies faculty.

JWST430 Dead Sea Scrolls (3 Credits)

A study of the Dead Sea Scrolls in their ancient and modern settings, and in terms of contemporary scholarly interpretations of their meaning. Interpretations of the historical significance of these documents, their connections to ancient Jewish sectarian movements, and their implications for our understanding of Judaism, Christianity, and the history of the Bible.

JWST432 Jews in Medieval Times 1000-1450 (3 Credits)

Social and cultural life of Jewish communities spread throughout Islam and Christendom. Major topics include the Gaonate; kehila organization; legal, rationalist, and mystical thought; and the context of rising animosity linked to the Crusades and changing Church doctrines.

JWST452 The Golden Age of Jewish Philosophy (3 Credits)

Jewish philosophy from Maimonides in the 12th century to the expulsion of the Jews from Spain at the end of the 15th Century. Topics include the limitations of human knowledge, creation of the world, foreknowledge and free will, and the existence of God.

JWST459 Readings in Medieval Hebrew (3-4 Credits)

Readings and analysis of Hebrew texts and literature from the Middle Ages. Language of instruction in English; all texts in Hebrew.

JWST468 Readings in the Hebrew Bible (3-4 Credits)

Readings in the Hebrew text of the Bible. Emphasis in close reading, grammar analysis, and modern interpretations of the Bible. Language of instruction English; all texts in Hebrew.

JWST469 Readings in Rabbinic Hebrew (3-4 Credits)

Readings in classical rabbinic texts and related corpora. Emphasis on grammar and reading skills as well as critical analysis of the material. Language of instruction: English; all texts in original language.

Prerequisite: HEBR313; or permission of instructor.

JWST471 Modern Hebrew Literature in Translation (3 Credits)

An exploration of modern Hebrew prose, poetry, and literary essays written from the 1880s through the present in Europe, Palestine, and Israel. An investigation of the challenges confronting authors such as Mendele Mokher Sforim, Avraham Mapu, Chaim Nahman Bialik, Dvorah Baron, S.Y. Agnon, and David Fogel as they tried to create a contemporary secular literature out of an ancient sacred language. All texts in English translation.

JWST478 Readings in Modern Hebrew (3 Credits)

Variable topics in Modern Hebrew Literature.

JWST491 Judaism and the Construction of Gender (3 Credits)

The study of Jewish culture, religious practice, communal authority, and literature through the frame of such critical categories of analysis as gender, sexuality, masculinity, power, ethics, and the feminine.

JWST492 Sex, Gender, and Jewish Identity (3 Credits)

An exploration of Jewish embodiment, including dynamics related to biological sex, culturally-framed gender, and sexuality. Topics of discussion may include transgender and intersex Jews, stereotypes and gender performance, modesty, genetics, and body alteration. Focus is on contemporary Jewish culture, framed within the larger historical and textual tradition.

JWST498 Advanced Language Module for Jewish Studies (1-3 Credits)

A supplementary language module for students enrolled in designated Jewish Studies classes. Language of instruction English, texts in original language.

JWST499 Independent Study in Jewish Studies (1-3 Credits)

ISRL Courses

Lower Level Courses

ISRL142 Introduction to Modern Israel (3 Credits)

An introduction to the history, politics, culture and society of modern Israel.

ISRL249 Selected Topics in Israel Studies (3 Credits)

Topics in the study of Zionism and contemporary Israel from the 1880's to the present. Future offerings may address history, politics, or culture.

ISRL249G Diversify and Multiply: Jewish Culture and the Production of an Identity (3 Credits)

Provides students with a unique exploration of cultural products produced by a diverse array of Jewish creators of literature, comedy and film. The texts, films, and performing arts touch on the central social, economic, and cultural issues of Jews during the ages, and up to the 21st century. This course will explore Jewish creativity throughout history, as well as the Jewish encounter with modernity as a whole. We will be diving into prominent creators such as Tiffany Haddish, Larry David, Sholem Aleichem, Adam Sandler, S. Y. Abramovitsch, Judd Apatow, Philip Roth, Amy Schumer, I. B. Singer, Ben Stiller, Franz Kafka, Dan Levy, and others. Examining their creations will open a window to the diverse methods of construction of modern Jewish identities.Cross-listed with: JWST272, CMLT242.

ISRL282 Introduction to Israeli Cinema (3 Credits)

An overview of Israeli cinema, with attention to the distinctive themes, politics, and problems that distinguish Israeli film-making. Taught in English.

ISRL289 New Explorations in Israel Studies (3 Credits)

Investigation of critical and innovative responses in Israel Studies. Although the topic will vary, the course will encourage intellectual exploration by students of fundamental problems and critical methods.

ISRL299 Independent Study in Israel Studies (1-3 Credits)

This lower-level independent study allows students to work closely with an Israel Studies faculty member of their choice, pending prior approval of the faculty member. In this independent study, students will focus on a topic specific to Israel Studies.

Upper Level Courses

ISRL329 Special Topics in Israel Studies (3 Credits)

Topics in the study of Zionism and contemporary Israel from the 1880's to the present at an intermediate level. Individual sections may address history, politics, or culture.

ISRL342 History of Modern Israel (3 Credits)

History of modern Israel since the beginning of the Zionist settlement in 1882. Attention to different interpretations and narratives of Israel's history, including the historical and ideological roots of Zionism, the establishment of the State of Israel, ideological forces, wars, and the triumphs and crises of democracy.Cross-listed with HIST376.

ISRL343 Global Migration and the Israeli Case Study (3 Credits)

Over 70% of Israel's population is made of first, second or third generation immigrants, who came from over 70 countries, making Israel an ultimate immigrant society. This course will focus on the history of Israel as a case study for the understanding of the historical phenomena of modern immigration.Cross-listed with: SOCY398G.

ISRL349 Investigating Topics in Israel Studies (3-6 Credits)

Topics in the study of Zionism and contemporary Israel from the 1880's to the present at an intermediate level. Individual sections may address history, politics, or culture.

ISRL448 Seminar in Israel Studies (3 Credits)

Intensive study of an Israel Studies topic. Expected work product is a substantial research or analysis paper or appropriate equivalent.

ISRL449 Advanced Topics in Israel Studies (3 Credits)

Topics in the study of Zionism and contemporary Israel from the 1880s to the present at the advanced level. Individual sections may address history, politics, or culture. Some Sections may have language or course prerequisites.

ISRL499 Advanced Independent Study in Israel Studies (1-3 Credits)

This upper-level independent study allows students to work closely with an Israel Studies faculty member of their choice, pending prior approval of the faculty member. In this independent study, students will focus on a topic specific to Israel Studies.

RELS Courses

Lower Level Courses

RELS120 Islamic Civilization (3 Credits)
Introduction to society and culture in the Middle East since the advent of Islam: as a personal and communal faith; as artistic and literary highlights of intellectual and cultural life; and as the interplay between politics and religion under the major Islamic regimes. Cross-listed with HIST120.
 
RELS133 God Wills It! The Crusades in Medieval and Modern Perspectives (3 Credits)
An examination of the identities and convictions both of the Western Europeans who participated in the Crusades and of the Easterners (Muslim, Christian, and Jewish) whom they encountered in the Holy Land. Focuses on the era of the first four great Crusades, from about 1095 to 1215. Consideration of the cultural impact of these movements on both Western Europe and the Middle East. Cross-listed with: HIST133.
 
RELS170 Greek and Roman Mythology (3 Credits)
An introduction to the mythology of ancient Greece and Rome. This course is particularly recommended for students planning to major in foreign languages, English, history, the fine arts, or journalism. Taught in English. Cross-listed with CLAS170.
 
RELS171 Is Judaism a Religion? (3 Credits)
Jewish identity can be framed in terms of ethnicity, culture, and religious practice, but also in terms of more contemporary social constructions including social action, political engagement, and intellectual pursuit. In the context of such diverse social and individual frames, what does it mean to identify Judaism as a religion? Attention to Jewish society in historical and global perspective will provide a backdrop for a particular focus on contemporary Jews in the United States and Israel. Cross-listed with: JWST171.
 
RELS219 Special Topics in Religious Studies (3 Credits)
Special topics in Religious Studies
Repeatable to: 9 credits if content differs.
 
RELS219K Reformers, Radicals, and Revolutionaries: The Middle East in the Twentieth Century (3 Credits)
The 20th century was a period of dramatic changes in the Middle East. Within the global context of the two World Wars and the Cold War, countries in the region struggled with the effects of colonialism and painful processes of decolonization. The course offers a thematic-comparative approach to issues such as social and political reform, nationalism, the colonial experience, independence struggles, models of governance, political violence, and Islamism. Course lectures and the analysis and discussion of primary sources will lead students to understand that the peoples of the Middle East found answers to the challenges posed by Western dominance based on their specific historical, cultural and socio-economic circumstances. Cross-listed with: HIST245.
 
RELS225 Religions of the Ancient Near East (3 Credits)
Introduction to ancient Near Eastern religious systems and mythology, from the third millennium BCE through the fourth century BCE. Particular emphasis on Mesopotamia and ancient Israel. Cross-listed with: HIST219I, JWST225.
 
RELS230 Inventing Traditions: The Making of Rabbinic Judaism (3 Credits)
Introduces the dramatic literary and cultural (as well as political and demographic) innovations that reshaped Judaism in late antiquity. Examines the fundamental works and genres of rabbinic literature and the religious movement that produced them. Special emphasis on the rabbinic uses of "tradition" to enhance authority and legitimacy, and to foster group identity. Cross-listed with: HIST281, JWST230.
 
RELS236 Philosophy of Religion (3 Credits)
A philosophical study of some of the main problems of religious thought: the nature of religious experience, the justification of religious belief, the conflicting claims of religion and science, and the relation between religion and morality. Cross-listed with PHIL236.
 
RELS250 Fundamental Concepts of Judaism (3 Credits)
A conceptional introduction to Judaism, analyzing its fundamental concepts from both analytical and historical perspectives. Discussion of "normative" Judaism as well as other conceptions of Judaism. Topics include: God, the Jewish people, authority, ethics, the sacred and the profane, particularism and universalism. Cross-listed with JWST250, PHIL234.
 
RELS264 Introduction to the New Testament (3 Credits)
A historical and literary introduction to the New Testament focusing on the context of the authors and the development of earliest Christianity.
 
RELS269 Special Topics in Study Abroad II (1-6 Credits)
Special topics course taken as part of an approved study abroad program.
Repeatable to: 15 credits if content differs.
 
RELS271 What is Religion? (3 Credits)
Draws upon examples from a wide variety of religious traditions to explore the question of what religion is and how to best understand it. Engagement with diverse approaches to religion including phenomenology and the study of "the sacred"; sociology and the study of religious communities; and questions of religious experience, ritual, and identity formation.
 
RELS273 Jesus, Mani, and Muhammad: The Dynamics of New Religious Movements (3 Credits)
We examine three significant ancient religious figures: Jesus (d. 30s CE), Mani (d. 276 CE), and Muhammad (d. 632). All three were founders of long-lasting religions that were part of a dramatic change in the society and religion of the ancient world. Special areas of focus: the biographies of these founding figures, and how we know them; a historical approach to religious founders; and the sociology of new religious movements. Cross-listed with: HIST289T.
 
RELS274 Jerusalem in Antiquity: The History of Sacred Space in a Holy City (3 Credits)
Examines the complex history of Jerusalem's status as a holy city, with a focus on constructions of sacred space in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Cross-listed with: JWST274.
 
RELS289 New Explorations in Religious Studies (3 Credits)
Investigation of critical and innovative responses in Religious Studies. Although the topic will vary, the course will encourage intellectual exploration by students of fundamental problems and critical methods.
 
RELS289C Jews, Christians, and Muslims in Medieval Spain: Tolerance, Oppression, and the Problematic Past (3 Credits)
For 800 years, medieval Spain was home to one of the most religiously diverse societies in European history. Despite frequent hostilities, the interactions of Spanish Jews, Christians, and Muslims produced a flowering of science, theology, and literature in an often remarkably tolerant climate. Students will learn how medieval Spanish people themselves experienced interreligious contact and conflict. They will also discover the modern pressures, prejudices, and ideals that have shaped historians interpretations of medieval Spain. Cross-listed with: HIST289A.

Upper Level Courses

RELS319 Special Topics in Religious Studies (1-3 Credits)
Special topics in the study of religious history, literature, culture, and thought.
Repeatable to: 6 credits if content differs.
 
RELS340 Europe in the Making: The Early Medieval West (A.D. 300-1000) (3 Credits)
From one empire to another: Rome to Charlemagne. This period is approached as a crucible in which classical, Christian, and Germanic elements merged, yielding new experimental syntheses. This course will deal with issues of authority, cultural trends, and the formation of group solidarity. Cross-listed with HIST330.
 
RELS341 Europe in the High Middle Ages: 1000-1500 (3 Credits)
Medieval civilization in the 11th through 15th centuries. Emphasis on cultural and political developments of the high Middle Ages with study of the principal sources of medieval thought and learning, art and architecture, and political theory prior to the Renaissance. Cross-listed with HIST331.
 
RELS342 Renaissance Europe (3 Credits)
Intellectual developments in Italy and Northern Europe from 1300 to 1550 and their influence on the arts and religion; social and economic trends, including the rise of the commercial economy in cities; the family and the role of women in society; expansion of Europe overseas and the beginnings of colonization; emergence of the state and consequent changes in political theory.
 
RELS343 The European Reformations (3 Credits)
Examination of developments in European religion between 1450 and 1700; the late-medieval Church and its critics; rise of Protestant thought in Germany and its spread throughout Europe; reform efforts in the Catholic Church; religious wars and violence and their impact on state and society; consequences of religious reform in society and its impact on the family and women.
 
RELS346 History of Religion in America (3 Credits)
A history of religion, religious movements, and churches in America from the early Colonial period to the present, with special attention to the relation between church and society.
 
RELS347 Tradition and Change: Jewish Religion in the Modern World (3 Credits)
An exploration of the history of the different modern Jewish religious movements that developed in Europe, starting with messianic movements and ending with Reform and Orthodoxy. Emphasis will be placed on the influence of the academic study of Judaism on the development of modern Jewish religious ideologies and practices. Cross-listed with: JWST347, HIST429X.
 
RELS369 Special Topics in Study Abroad III (1-6 Credits)
Special topics course taken as part of an approved study abroad program.
Repeatable to: 15 credits if content differs.
 
RELS370 Ancient Greek Religion: Gods, Myths, Temples (3 Credits)
Survey of Greek religious ideas and practices as they evolve from the Bronze Age to the early Christian period. Cross-listed with CLAS330.
 
RELS400 Methods and Theories in the Study of Religion (3 Credits)
An exploration of scholarly approaches to the study of religion. The modern history of the secular study of religion, social dynamics, textual formations, and ritual practices. Jointly offered with RELS600.
 
RELS408 Capstone Seminar for Religions of the Ancient Middle East (3 Credits)
A capstone seminar for majors in Religions of the Ancient Middle East, designed to provide the intellectual framework for a substantial, interdisciplinary research project. Course topics will be thematic and students will be encouraged to explore comparative or interdisciplinary approaches.
 
RELS419 Advanced Topics in Religious Studies (3 Credits)
The contemporary study of religion in which topics may address specific religious traditions, regional or historical developments, or methodological and theoretical issues.
 
RELS429 Advanced Topics in Religious History (3 Credits)
Advanced study of religious history in a particular setting, with attention to particular themes, texts, events, or communities.
 
RELS430 Dead Sea Scrolls (3 Credits)
A study of the Dead Sea Scrolls in their ancient and modern settings, and in terms of contemporary scholarly interpretations of their meaning. Interpretations of the historical significance of these documents, their connections to ancient Jewish sectarian movements, and their implications for our understanding of Judaism, Christianity, and the history of the Bible.
 
RELS439 Advanced Topics in Religious Thought (3 Credits)
Advanced study of religious thought in a particular setting, with attention to particular themes, texts, events, or communities.
 
RELS488 Honors Thesis Research in Religions of the Ancient Middle East (3 Credits)
Guided research on a thesis under the supervision of a faculty mentor.
Repeatable to: 6 credits if content differs.
 
RELS499 Independent Study in Religious Studies (1-3 Credits)
An advanced independent research project for qualified students, supervised by a faculty member, on a topic not ordinarily covered in available courses.

HEBR Courses

Lower Level Courses

HEBR102 Elementary Hebrew I-B (3 Credits)
Continues HEBR101. Modern Israeli Hebrew. Emphasis on conversation. Study of linguistic structure and development of audio-lingual, writing and reading ability. Corresponds to the second half of HEBR111.
 
HEBR103 Elementary Hebrew II-A (3 Credits)
Continuation of HEBR102 and HEBR111. Modern Israeli Hebrew. Emphasis on conversation. Study of linguistic structure and development of audio-lingual, writing, and reading ability. Corresponds to the first half of HEBR112.
 
HEBR104 Elementary Hebrew II-B (3 Credits)
Continuation of HEBR103. Modern Israeli Hebrew. Emphasis on conversation. Study of linguistic structure and development of audio-lingual, writing, and reading ability. Corresponds to the second half of HEBR112.
 
HEBR106 Intensive Elementary Hebrew I (4 Credits)
An intensive study of fundamentals of Hebrew reading, writing, listening and Israeli culture. Covers present tense in all verb categories, basic syntax and builds vocabulary.
 
HEBR107 Intensive Elementary Hebrew II (4 Credits)
A continuation of intensive study of fundamentals of Hebrew reading, writing, listening, speaking and Israeli culture. Covers past tense in all verb categories, basic syntax and builds vocabulary.
 
HEBR111 Elementary Hebrew I (6 Credits)
Modern Israeli Hebrew. Emphasis on conversation. Study of linguistic structure and development of audio-lingual, writing and reading ability.
 
HEBR112 Elementary Hebrew II (6 Credits)
Continuation of HEBR 111.
 
HEBR199 Special Topics in Hebrew (3 Credits)
Topics in language, literature, and culture. Varies by semester and instructor.
 
HEBR203 Intermediate Hebrew II-A (3 Credits)
Continuation of HEBR211 or HEBR202. Study of linguistic structure, further development of audio-lingual, reading, writing, and speaking skills. Reading of texts and newspapers designed to give some knowledge of Hebrew life, thought and culture. Corresponds to the first half of HEBR212.
 
HEBR204 Intermediate Hebrew II-B (3 Credits)
Continuation of HEBR203. Study of linguistic structure, further development of audio-lingual, reading, writing, and speaking skills. Reading of texts and newspapers designed to give some knowledge of Hebrew life, thought and culture. Corresponds to the second half of HEBR212.
 
HEBR206 Intermediate Intensive Hebrew I (4 Credits)
Provides a comprehensive review of the fundamentals of Hebrew grammar and oral skills, and introduces new skills in future tense verb conjugation, and communication in reading, writing, listening and speaking.
 
HEBR207 Intensive Intermediate Hebrew II (4 Credits)
A review of the fundamentals of Hebrew grammar, reading, writing, listening and speaking.
 
HEBR211 Intermediate Hebrew I (6 Credits)
Study of linguistic structure, further development of audio-lingual, reading, writing, and speaking skills. Reading of texts and newspapers designed to give some knowledge of Hebrew life, thought and culture.
 
HEBR212 Intermediate Hebrew II (6 Credits)
Continuation of HEBR211.
 
HEBR249 Special Topics in Hebrew Studies (1-3 Credits)
A broad range of cultural and societal topics pertaining to the communication of Hebrew.
 
HEBR269 Special Topics in Study Abroad II (1-6 Credits)
Special topics course taken as part of an approved study abroad program.
 
HEBR298 Special Topics in Jewish Studies (3 Credits)

Upper Level Courses

HEBR313 Conversation and Composition I (3 Credits)
A practical language course recommended for all students continuing with Hebrew. Review of grammar and composition. Selected readings. Oral and written exercises.
 
HEBR314 Conversation and Composition II (3 Credits)
A practical language course recommended for all students continuing with Hebrew. Review of grammar and composition. Selected readings. Oral and written exercises.
 
HEBR369 Special Topics in Study Abroad III (1-6 Credits)
Special topics course taken as part of an approved study abroad program.
 
HEBR381 Introduction to Hebrew Cultural Studies (3 Credits)
Critical study of Israeli culture with emphasis on literature, film, and art as sites of struggle over political and social meaning during times of cultural transformation. Focus on the historical development of Israeli identity and gender, in particular within the military and Zionist youth movements. Taught in Hebrew.
 
HEBR386 Experiential Learning (3-6 Credits)
Restriction: Must have a Learning Proposal approved by the Office of Experiential Learning Programs, faculty sponsor, and student's internship sponsor; and junior standing or higher.
 
HEBR388 Language House Colloquium (1 Credit)
For students residing in the Language House Immersion Program. Focuses on the development of skills in the target language and acquiring the cultural knowledge of the countries that speak the target language.
Restriction: Must be a resident in the Language House Immersion program.
 
HEBR430 Critical Issues in Israeli Cinema (3 Credits)
Critical investigation of Zionist and Israeli culture and politics through film. Cross-listed with: CINE430.
 
HEBR498 Special Topics in Hebrew (3 Credits)
Repeatable to: 6 credits if content differs.
 
HEBR499 Independent Study in Hebrew (1-3 Credits)
Independent study under faculty supervision.