Raymond P. Scheindlin, Jewish Literature, on leave fall 2014
Neil Danzig, Talmud and Rabbinics and Geonic Literature
The program in Medieval and Early Modern Jewish Studies allows students to study Jewish history, literature, religious thought, art, and material culture in a multidisciplinary and integrated framework. Hebrew poetry, rabbinic law, communal life, women's history, the visual arts, philosophy and Kabbalah are just some of the subjects that may be studied. Students concentrate on complementary aspects of Jewish culture and society while learning to apply different disciplinary methodologies to deepen their understanding of this important historical period. The Jewish Theological Seminary's Special Collections of rare books and manuscripts are an extraordinary resource for students, who are invited to use them for their guided research.
Bachelor of Arts
Admission Requirements for List College
Requirements for the BA major in Medieval and Early Modern Jewish Studies (for List College students who matriculated in fall 2012 or later): 30 credits, chosen in consultation with the major advisor, of which 3 credits may be double-counted for a List College core requirement, as follows:
Note: 3–6 credits (1 or 2 courses) of Advanced Hebrew (Heb 5301 or 5302) or advanced study in another language (e.g., Arabic, Latin) may be counted toward the 21 credits, with permission of the advisor.
Requirements for the MA degree in Medieval and Early Modern Jewish Studies
Students entering the program take the following prerequisite courses if they have not had the equivalent previously:
Students are permitted to register for courses counting toward the degree while fulfilling these prerequisites. In addition to courses required of all students in The Graduate School, 30 graduate credits are required as follows:
21 credits (7 courses) to be distributed among at least 3 of the following 5 broad subject areas:
Credit toward the 21 credits may be given for up to two semesters of Advanced Hebrew in order to enable students to take Hebrew-text intensive courses. Of the above-listed courses taken at JTS, at least one must be listed or cross-listed as JGW (Jewish Gender and Women's Studies).
3 credits (1 course) multidisciplinary seminar is required (in years when such a seminar is not offered, this requirement may be fulfilled through independent study)
6 credits (2 courses) in related medieval or early modern studies, taken at a neighboring institution in the Consortium Program, or, with permission, in the advanced study of other relevant medieval languages such as Latin or Arabic. All courses are determined in consultation with the advisor.
An examination on selected topics in each of three disciplinary areas, chosen in consultation with the advisor at the end of the first year of studies.
Degree Requirements for the Doctor of Hebrew Literature
In addition to courses required of all students in The Graduate School, 30 graduate credits beyond the MA are required. Courses are selected in consultation with the doctoral advisor. Students who have not received an MA in Medieval and Early Modern Jewish Studies may be required to complete additional courses as prerequisite work. All courses will be determined through consultation with the advisor.
Upon satisfactory completion of all course work, students must take an oral examination on selected topics in three disciplinary areas (e.g., history, philosophy, and literature) and on the area of the candidate's dissertation, including a review of the secondary literature in the area of the proposed dissertation.
An original monograph-length dissertation on a topic in medieval or early modern Jewish studies, to be approved by a faculty committee.
Students interested in pursuing a PhD in Medieval and Early Modern Jewish Studies apply to The Graduate School, expressing their interest in that area.
Degree Requirements for the PhD in Medieval and Early Modern Jewish Studies
In addition to languages required of all students in The Graduate School, proficiency must be demonstrated in two primary source languages (Hebrew, Arabic, or Latin), and two secondary source languages (German and French, Spanish, or Italian).
In addition to courses required of all students in The Graduate School, at least 30 graduate credits beyond the MA are required. Courses are selected in consultation with the doctoral advisor. Students who have not received an MA in Medieval or Early Modern Jewish Studies may be required to complete additional courses as prerequisite work. All courses are determined in consultation with the advisor.
Upon satisfactory completion of all course work, candidates for the PhD must take a comprehensive examination consisting of written and oral parts. The written part consists of four essays, one in each of three disciplinary studies (e.g., history, literature, and philosophy) and a fourth in a cognate subject. After the candidate has had the opportunity to study the examiners' comments on the written part, the oral examination ensues. The four essays may be written in separate sittings spread over a semester.
A faculty committee must approve the dissertation proposal. The dissertation will be an original monograph-length dissertation that demonstrates the candidate's ability to pursue original research in at least two disciplinary areas, to be approved by a faculty committee after an oral defense.