The Jewish Theological Seminary, Hartford Seminary, and the Islamic Society of North America to Present Second Workshop on “Judaism and Islam in America”

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


August 31, 2011, New York, NY

The Jewish Theological Seminary, Hartford Seminary, and the Islamic Society of North America to Present Second Workshop on “Judaism and Islam in America”


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contact: Eve Glasberg
(212) 678-8089; evglasberg@jtsa.edu


New York, NY, August 31, 2011—The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS), in partnership with Hartford Seminary and the Islamic Society of North America, will present the second workshop on “Judaism and Islam in America.” The event, entitled “The Interpretation of Law and Scripture,” will take place at Hartford Seminary in Hartford, Connecticut, on September 19 and 20, 2011.

This second workshop was organized in response to the overwhelmingly positive reception that the first “Judaism and Islam in America” received. That landmark event was held in October 2010 at JTS and consisted of two parts: an innovative roundtable discussion, “Judaism and Islam in America Today: Assimilation and Authenticity,” which was open to the public and attracted a standing-room-only crowd; and a by-invitation-only workshop that was attended by Jewish and Muslim leaders, scholars, and social scientists.

“Thanks to the success of last year’s workshop, the Carnegie Corporation agreed to fund us again for a second year. This allows us to narrow our focus to two areas that Judaism and Islam have in common: interpretation of Scripture and application of religious law. In both of these seminal subjects, the two religions exemplify what it means to be ‘People of the Book,’” said Rabbi Burton L. Visotzky, co-organizer of the workshops.

This year’s installment of the workshop will be open to invited scholars, as well as to a limited number of Hartford Seminary students. The Monday, September 19, evening program is open to the public, and it is anticipated that members of all three religious traditions—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam—will be attending.

The following are scholars from JTS who are participating in and/or attending the workshop:

  • Professor Arnold M. Eisen, chancellor of JTS, speaking on “Religion and Legalism in Islam and Judaism” with Ebrahim Moosa, professor of Religion and Islamic Studies at Duke University
  • Rabbi Burton L. Visotzky, Appleman Professor of Midrash and Interreligious Studies and director of the Louis Finkelstein Institute for Religious and Social Studies of JTS, speaking on “History of Scriptural Interpretation in Judaism and Islam” with Mahmoud Ayoub, Faculty Associate in Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations at the Macdonald Center for the Study of Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations at Harford Seminary
  • Rabbi Daniel Nevins, Pearl Resnick Dean of The Rabbinical School and dean of the Division of Religious Leadership of JTS, speaking on “The Application of Jewish and Islamic Law in America” with Sheikha Professor Zainab Alwani, program director and an adjunct professor of Arabic Language Studies at Northern Virginia Community College
  • Dr. Benjamin D. Sommer, professor of Bible at JTS, speaking on “The Study of Scripture in the Secular Academy” with Jonathan A. Brown, assistant professor of Islamic Studies and Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown University
  • Rabbi Robert A. Harris, associate professor of Bible at JTS, speaking on “Preaching Scripture in Contemporary America,” with Timur R. Yuskaev, assistant professor of Contemporary Islam and director of the Islamic Chaplaincy Program at the Macdonald Center for the Study of Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations at Hartford Seminary
  • Rabbi Julie Schonfeld, JTS alumna and executive vice president of the Rabbinical Assembly, speaking on “The Congregational Leader and the Sacred Law” with Imam Mohamed Hag Magid Ali, president of the Islamic Society of North America
  • Rabbi David M. Freidenreich, JTS alumnus and Pulver Family Assistant Professor of Jewish Studies at Colby College, speaking on “Comparative Theory of Jewish and Islamic Law” with Ebrahim Moosa
  • Rabbi Gordon Tucker, JTS alumnus, adjunct assistant professor of Jewish Philosophy at JTS, and senior rabbi at Temple Israel Center, White Plains, New York, speaking on the “Current State of Jewish and Islamic Legal Theory” with Sherman Jackson, professor of Islam at the University of Michigan
  • Dr. Beth Berkowitz, associate professor of Talmud and Rabbinics at JTS, and Rabbi Jonathan Milgram, assistant professor of Talmud and Rabbinics at JTS, also taking part in the two-day event
For more information on the sponsoring institutions, please visit them at the following websites: JTS at www.jtsa.edu, the Macdonald Center at Hartford Seminary at www.macdonald.hartsem.edu, and the Islamic Society of North America at www.isna.net.

Visit JTS at www.jtsa.edu
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