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Winter Break 2011

Winter Break Program in Israel, December 2011

Directors: Stacy Beckwith and Louis Newman

Faith and Fiction

Immerse yourself in a world both sacred and secular, east and west, old and new—through an interdisciplinary program that combines literature, cultural studies and religious studies

 

Fall Term, students take:

Hebr 222    Discovering Literary Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem (Stacy Beckwith) 

OR

Relg 222     The State of Judaism in the State of Israel (Louis Newman)

Winter Break Program 2011 in Israel

  • Converse with noted Israeli authors  
  • Meet religious and secular Israeli activists
  • Explore Zionist history in old Tel Aviv
  • Discover Judaism’s newest expressions in its holiest city
  • Learn about the impact of the Holocaust on Israeli identity through the Holocaust museum (Yad Vashem)
  • Explore the ancient religious sites of Jerusalem
  • Visit a Dead Sea oasis

Winter Term, students take Relg 223 or Hebr 223:

Both fall courses and the Israel trip will culminate in an independent research project and symposium winter term 2012

Some highlights:

  • Converse with noted Israeli authors
  • Meet religious and secular Israeli activists
  • Explore Zionist history in old Tel Aviv
  • Discover Judaism’s newest expressions in its holiest city
  • Medieval mystics and modern artists in Safed
  • Learn about the impact of the Holocaust on Israeli identity through the Holocaust museum (Yad Vashem)
  • Explore the ancient religious sites of Jerusalem
  • Visit a Dead Sea oasis

 Fall Term Courses

Register for one of the following courses:

Hebr. 221 “Discovering Literary Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem”

This course will invite students to delve into Israel’s two major cities and their differences in history and character. In a land whose urban centers were characterized by ethnic and religious pluralism since ancient times, Tel Aviv was the first modern city built solely by European Jewish immigrants in the 1900s. As such, its depiction in period and retrospective Hebrew literature will give students an accessible introduction to many Zionist ideals and the local, Middle Eastern realities that challenged them. Both at Carleton and on site, we will then chart the emergence of contemporary, multicultural Tel Aviv as participants in an ongoing dialogue between authors, historians, cultural studies specialists, and particular buildings, monuments, and iconic urban spaces. Tel Aviv’s early ideological parameters and relatively short history will allow students to prepare their critical thinking for our similar literary and cultural reconnaissance of Jerusalem, with its much longer, more complex history of constitutive diversity.

Relg. 222 “The State of Judaism in the State of Israel”

This course will invite students to consider a number of questions. Why were the early Zionists so anti-religious? How, despite this legacy, did the creation of a Jewish national homeland in Israeli excite such enormous religious passions? Given this complicated blending of ideologies, how is Judaism practiced in Israel today? What role does Judaism play in this largely secular democracy? How do religious Israelis (of all denominations) relate to their secular neighbors? These questions will be explored through a range of readings from key biblical texts to the works of contemporary “post-Zionist” Israeli thinkers.

Trip to Israel, Dec. 1 – 15, 2011 (tentative dates)

Winter term, 2012

Register for independent research course with either Beckwith or Newman. This course will meet just once a week and will give you the opportunity to work collaboratively on a research project that builds on your fall term course and what you learned on the trip to Israel. At the conclusion of the winter term, we hope to create a public symposium where you can share your work with the Carleton community.