In the Department

  • Routledge Journals from the Taylor & Francis Group have recently featured an article written by two of our faculty members  Armon-Lotem and Walters  in collaboration with three of our alumni -- Altman, Burnstein-Feldman, and Yitzhaki  in the series Global Issues: Language, Culture & Identity. The paper "Family language policies, reported language use and proficiency in Russian – Hebrew bilingual children in Israel"...

  • Prof. Evan Fallenberg will be teaching a new writing course. In this workshop, students will be introduced to the practice of literary translation – which Goethe called "… one of the weightiest and worthiest undertakings in the general concerns of the world" – and experience how texts both define and transcend cultural borders. Each week we will discuss students’ translations of literary works from any language (the language of their choosing) into English, together with essays, stories and published translations, in order to examine the principal...

  • Did you know that Arabic speaking kids all over the world first acquire a variety of Arabic that is only spoken and does not have any conventional written form? Yet, all Arabic books, including children’s storybooks are written in a different variety of the language called Standard Arabic. This language variety is learnt primarily at school and is remarkably different from the spoken variety in vocabulary and also in phonological, morphological and syntactic structure. It is estimated that only 20% of the words in the spoken lexicon of preschool children exist in an identical form in...

  • As part of her current research, Dr. Galit Weidman Sassoon examines the grammatical, conceptual and cognitive basis of linguistic phenomena of gradability, scale structure and vagueness from a theoretical, empirical and experimental perspective. This involves addressing questions such as the following:

    • VaguenessHow many grains of sand make a heap?
    • ...
  • Dr. Esther Schupak will be teaching a new course that will focus on gendered power relations in Shakespeare's texts. Early feminist criticism often coalesced around the two binaries of viewing Shakespeare’s work as either proto-feminist or unredeemably misogynist, while later feminist work has tended to adopt the narrative of women’s oppression. The limitation of this narrative is not that it is incorrect, but that it is reductive, failing to account for the many subtleties and complexities of Shakespeare’s writing and its interplay with the history of early...

  • About Decency (Black Lawrence Press, 2015) by Prof. Marcela Sulak: "Decency celebrates the spunky wenches, the unfortunate queens, the complicated translators, the wistful wives who have been hustled off the spotlit stages of history. Through the lens of Victorian manuals of etiquette, through the unfolding of religion from the Middle East to the American Southwest, Decency thinks through the brutal things we do to one another, recording the ways the individual operates in relation to society...

  • In Open Your Hand: Teaching as a Jew, Teaching as an American (Rutgers University Press, 2018), Ilana Blumberg explores how civic and religious commitments shape the culture of her humanities classrooms, and argues that there is no education without ethics. When we know what sort of society we seek to build, our teaching practices follow.

     
    In vivid classroom scenes from kindergarten through middle school to the university level, Blumberg conveys the drama of intellectual discovery...
  • Dr. Karin Berkman will be teaching a new course on twentieth-century British literature. The course surveys developments in the novel, short story, and poetry across the twentieth century, examining the ways in which British literature responds to cataclysmic historical events. We will begin by tracing the ways in which the novel provides a profound critique of the iniquities of British imperialism. We will turn to an examination of the poetry that emerges from the trenches of the First World War, focusing on the work of Wilfred Owen, Isaac Rosenberg, Edward Thomas, and Siegfried Sassoon....

  • South African apartheid sign

    Taught by Dr. Karin Berkman, this course examines South African cultural production between 1948 and 1996, under apartheid rule and in the post-apartheid period. During the course of the semester, the class will read the works of some of South Africa’s most renowned writers, including Alan Paton, Nadine Gordimer, Athol Fugard, Oswald Mtshali, Mongane Wally Serote, Dennis Brutus, Antjie Krog, among others, and analyze diverse literary forms including the novel, the short story, life writing, drama, and poetry. In addition, close attention will be paid to South African film. In order...

  • Joseph Soloveitchik (1903–1993) was a major American Orthodox rabbi, Talmudist, philosopher, and theologian, In The Last Rabbi: Joseph Soloveitchik and Talmudic Tradition (Indiana University Press, 2016), Professor William Kolbrener takes on the Soloveitchik’s controversial legacy and shows how he was torn between the traditionalist demands...