Center for Jewish Studies at Harvard University

The Center for Jewish Studies at Harvard University is the focal point for the study and teaching of Judaica through publications, fellowships, lectures, and symposia on topics of interest to scholars and to the general public. The Center sponsors visiting scholars and post-doctoral research fellows and coordinates undergraduate and graduate studies on an interdisciplinary basis.

Sub-Collections

Below is a list of in-print works in this collection, presented in series order or publication order as applicable.

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Cover: The Pride of Jacob: Essays on Jacob Katz and His Work

The Pride of Jacob: Essays on Jacob Katz and His Work

Harris, Jay M.

Katz transformed our understanding of Jewish–Christian relations in the Middle Ages, the social-historical significance of Jewish law, the rise of Orthodoxy in Germany and Hungary, and the emergence of modern anti-Semitism. Here ten scholars discuss his work and its importance in reshaping the way Jewish history is studied.

Cover: On Long Winter Nights…: Memoirs of a Jewish Family in a Galician Township, 1870–1900

On Long Winter Nights…: Memoirs of a Jewish Family in a Galician Township, 1870–1900

Bergner, Hinde
Cammy, Justin Daniel

In this intimate memoir of a young Jewish woman’s adolescence and life in a nineteenth century Eastern European shtetl, Hinde Bergner recalls the gradual impact of modernization on a traditional world as she finds herself caught between her thirst for a European education, true love, and the expectations of her traditional family.

Cover: Prayers that Cite Scripture: Biblical Quotation in Jewish Prayers from Antiquity through the Middle Ages

Prayers that Cite Scripture: Biblical Quotation in Jewish Prayers from Antiquity through the Middle Ages

Kugel, James L.

In the beginning, prayers were straightforward: people turned to God and asked for help. By the closing centuries of the biblical period, however, prayers began to include references to Scripture. This process grew in intensity and refinement as Judaism moved from the biblical period to early post-biblical times. This collection of essays seeks to chart the main lines of the Scripturalization of prayer over this entire period.

Cover: Creativity and Tradition: Studies in Medieval Rabbinic Scholarship, Literature and Thought

Creativity and Tradition: Studies in Medieval Rabbinic Scholarship, Literature and Thought

Ta-Shma, Israel M.

This volume brings together 16 of Ta-Shma’s outstanding studies (4 published here for the first time). These essays focus on leading rabbinic scholars and their writings as well as important issues of Jewish intellectual history, such as the nature of halakhah and aggadah; kabbalah and spirituality; childhood; and popular religion.

Cover: Maimonides after 800 Years: Essays on Maimonides and His Influence

Maimonides after 800 Years: Essays on Maimonides and His Influence

Harris, Jay M.

Moses Maimonides was the most significant Jewish thinker, jurist, and doctor of the Middle Ages, author of both a monumental code of Jewish law and the most influential and controversial work of Jewish philosophy. These essays mark the 800th anniversary of Maimonides’s death in 1204, covering all aspects of his work and influence.

Cover: Arguing the Modern Jewish Canon: Essays on Literature and Culture in Honor of Ruth R. Wisse

Arguing the Modern Jewish Canon: Essays on Literature and Culture in Honor of Ruth R. Wisse

Cammy, Justin Daniel
Horn, Dara
Quint, Alyssa
Rubinstein, Rachel

Wisse is a leading scholar of Yiddish and Jewish literary studies and a fearless public intellectual on issues relating to Jewish society and culture. In this celebratory volume, her colleagues pay tribute with a collection of critical essays whose subjects break new ground in Yiddish, Hebrew, Israeli, American, European, and Holocaust literature.

Cover: A Biblical Translation in the Making: The Evolution and Impact of Saadia Gaon’s <i>Tafsīr</i>

A Biblical Translation in the Making: The Evolution and Impact of Saadia Gaon’s Tafsīr

Steiner, Richard C.

The Tafsīr, a new translation of the Torah made by R. Saadia Gaon (882–942 C.E.) for Arabic-speaking Jews, was the most important Jewish Bible translation of the Middle Ages. Richard Steiner traces the Tafsīr’s history—its ancient and medieval roots, modest beginnings, subsequent evolution, and profound impact on the history of biblical exegesis.

Cover: What Is the Mishnah?: The State of the Field

What Is the Mishnah?: The State of the Field

Cohen, Shaye J. D.

The Mishnah is the foundational document of rabbinic Judaism—rabbinic law is based on the Talmud which, in turn, is based on the Mishnah. Yet its sources, genre, and purpose are obscure. What Is the Mishnah? collects papers by leading scholars from the United States, Europe, and Israel and gives a clear sense of the direction of Mishnah studies.

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