Dallas Area Conservative Synagogues to Host JTS Scholar for Slichot

Press Contact: Nina Jacobson
Office: (212) 678-8950
Email: nijacobson@jtsa.edu

August 19, 2008, Richardson, TX

Professor Judith Hauptman, E. Billi Ivry Professor of Talmud and Rabbinic Culture at The Jewish Theological Seminary, will be the guest scholar at the 2008-2009 Mark A. Siegel Scholar-in-Residence program on Friday-Sunday, September 19-21, at Congregation Beth Torah, 720 Lookout Drive, Richardson.

Dr. Hauptman's scholarly research focuses on two areas. The first is unraveling the mystery of how the Talmud came into being, i.e., how the many strands of rabbinic teachings coalesced into one coherent document. Her second area of research involves investigating women's roles in Judaic thought, bringing an evaluation of the social and ethical norms of the rabbinic period into dialogue with contemporary issues.

A popular lecturer and writer, Dr. Hauptman has authored three books, including Rereading the Rabbis: A Woman’s Voice, and many influential articles. Among them are: "Women and Prayer: An Attempt to Dispel Some Fallacies" (JUDAISM, Winter 1993); "Mishnah as a Response to Tosefta" (The Synoptic Problem in Rabbinic Literature, Brown Judaic Series, 2000); and "Ordaining Gay Men and Women" (Forward, April 13, 2007). Shortly after her ordination as a rabbi, she founded Ohel Ayalah, an outreach project to disaffected young Jews, named in memory of her mother.

A member of several academic boards, Dr. Hauptman also serves on the board of the Jewish Community Project, an organization that seeks to enhance Jewish life in lower Manhattan. In addition to her full-time post at JTS, where she has taught since 1973, she is a frequent instructor in the adult-education program at the 92nd Street Y in New York City. Dr. Hauptman received a degree in Talmud from the Seminary College of Jewish Studies at JTS (now Albert A. List College of Jewish Studies) and a degree in Economics from Barnard College, and earned an MA and a PhD in Talmud from JTS. In May 2003, she was ordained as a rabbi by the Academy for Jewish Religion.

On Friday evening, Dr. Hauptman will discuss “Men and Women in Rabbinic Law and Life,” during which she will explore the unique roles of men and women in Jewish tradition, and how gender impacts Jewish learning and leadership. This will be preceded by Shabbat services and a congregational Shabbat dinner. Free for CBT members, the cost is $25 per person for non members. Reservations are required by Friday, September 12.

On Saturday evening, members of Congregations Anshai Torah and Shearith Israel are invited to join CBT members for study and a communal Slichot service. The program, which will begin at 8:30 p.m., will include an address by Dr. Hauptman on “What Are We Really Asking For? An Analysis of Key Themes of the High Holiday Liturgy.” The program is free and open to the community.

The weekend of learning will conclude on Sunday morning at 10:00 a.m. with brunch and study with Dr. Hauptman, who will speak on the topic “Great Gemara: A Discussion of Business Ethics.” Generously co-sponsored by CBT’s Men’s Club and Sisterhood, the program is free for CBT members and $10 for non members. Reservations are required by Friday, September 12.

Reservations and further information is available by contacting the synagogue at (972) 234-1542, ext. 227, or by email.