Prof. Ruth Calderon
15 teaching hours, equivalent to 2 ECTS

Dr. Ruth Calderon is one of Israel’s leading figures spearheading efforts to revive Hebrew Culture and a pluralistic Israeli-Jewish identity. In 1989, she co-established ELUL in Jerusalem, the first beit midrash in which secular and religious women and men studied and taught together.  In 1996, she founded in Tel Aviv ALMA, which a Jewish liberal arts program for advanced learning.  Dr. Calderon is the author of “A Bride for One Night” (2001), a personal homiletic reading of Talmudic legends, and “Talmudic Alpha Beta” (2014).  From 2013-2015, Dr. Calderon was a Knesset Member from the Yesh Atid Party, where she was Deputy Speaker, member of the education and state control committees, and Chairperson of the Lobby for Jewish Renewal. Dr. Calderon holds a Master of Arts and Ph.D. in Talmud from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

“Aggadic stories are not merely historical depictions, and the tools of the conventional historical analysis will not suffice to plump their literary depths….  As readers of the Talmud, we encounter this very human dimension of the text over the course of our own lives” ( RC, A bride for one night). The course will invite students to ‘close read’ a selection of Talmudic stories. We will be looking into the poetics of Rabbinic narratives, the literary virtues of the genre ask how much is the Talmudic story Historic account or Didactic tale and try to place the stories in their Cultural context.