Graduate Theological Union

Naomi Seidman

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Jewish Studies Students Back from Poland

“I WENT TO POLAND to research the reputation of Yiddish writer Sholem Asch (1880-1957). Conversations with scholars in Warsaw and Krakow led me to Kutno, Asch’s birthplace, where I discovered that a biennial festival is held to honor him. I was surprised to discover the extent of Asch’s literary reputation in Poland outside the Jewish community. His works were extensively translated into Polish and are still in print. He was the first Jew to receive the Order of Polonia Restituta (Order of Rebirth of Poland).

“It was remarkable to discover that right now, in Poland, a new narrative of Jewish experience is being constructed — about the rich texture and communal life of the Jewish community 800 years before the horrific events of the 20th century. While we should not forget the events of World War II, the Holocaust is no longer the only lens for viewing the Jewish story in Poland.”
— Alan Shore, Ph.D. student in Jewish History and Culture

Jewish Studies Students to Visit Poland

For more than 40 years, GTU’s Center for Jewish Studies (CJS) has offered outstanding academic programs committed to interreligious conversation, and has served as a vital center for Jewish life in the Bay Area, hosting scholarly lectures, films, conferences, and Jewish holiday celebrations that are open to the public.

Thanks to a three-year $900,000 grant made in 2008, by both the Taube Foundation for Jewish Life and Culture and the Koret Foundation, CJS continues to offer robust academic and community programs.

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