JTS Hosts "Lost Texts: A Graduate Student Conference"

Press Contact: Eve Glasberg
Office: (212) 678-8089
Email: evglasberg@jtsa.edu

March 22, 2012, New York, NY

The Graduate School of The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) and its Graduate School Student Organization are cosponsoring "Lost Texts: A Graduate Student Conference" on Sunday, April 29, 2012 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The daylong event, which will address the ways in which lost texts have served to complicate and expand the borders of Jewish life past and present, will be held at JTS (3080 Broadway at 122nd Street) in New York City.

"Lost Texts" is the first graduate student-run conference at JTS. It is free and open to the public. Check-in begins at 9:30 a.m. Lunch will be provided. See http://jtsa.edu/LostTexts for program details, and register here by April 16. For more information, contact the Graduate School Student Organization at jts.gsso@gmail.com. Please arrive early, and have photo ID available.

Much of Jewish history can be viewed as a struggle between competing textual traditions, often motivated by the reintroduction and reappropriation of lost texts. The redacted texts of the biblical canons; the revelations of the Cairo Genizah and the Dead Sea Scrolls; the invention and revision of Jewish literary traditions by the scholars, writers, artists, and thinkers of Jewish modernity: each of these discoveries has had profound effects on Jewish life. Event participants will explore lost texts as central objects of inquiry, and reflect on Jewish studies as a discipline in which forgotten or marginalized traditions become present through the mediation of academic discourse.

Dr. Beth Berkowitz, associate professor of Talmud and Rabbinics, JTS, will deliver the keynote address, "Lost in Interpretation: Multiple Meanings, Midrash, and Making Jewish Identities." There will be four panels featuring presentations by graduate students from JTS and other U.S. universities. The panels are "Retrieval: Expanding the Rabbinic Canon"; "Appropriation: Lost Sources of American Jewish Literatures"; "Recuperation: The Scrolls of Ancient Judaism"; and "Recovery: Tradition and Identity in Central European Intellectual Culture." Faculty respondents will be Dr. Marjorie Lehman, associate professor of Talmud and Rabbinics, JTS; Dr. David Marcus, professor of Bible, JTS; Dr. Alan Mintz, Chana Kekst Professor of Hebrew Literature, JTS; and Dr. Jess Olson, assistant professor of Jewish History and associate director of Center for Israel Studies, Yeshiva University.


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