Author: rmf02009

4/1/16 – Colloquium – Einstein’s Legacy: Studying Gravity in War and Peace

EinsteinWe’re very pleased to be co-sponsoring a colloquium with the Physics Department.

Friday, April 1st, 2016

04:00 PM – 05:00 PM

Storrs Campus
Gant Science Complex, Physics Building, Room P038

Professor David Kaiser, from the Department of Physics and Program in Science Technology, and Society at MIT, will present:

“Joint Physics/Judaic Studies Center Colloquium
Einstein’s Legacy: Studying Gravity in War and Peace”

Refreshments will be prior to the talk, at 3:30 p.m., in the Gant Complex,
Physics Library, Room P-103.

A popular image persists of Albert Einstein as a loner, someone who
avoided the hustle and bustle of everyday life in favor of quiet
contemplation. Yet Einstein was deeply engaged with politics throughout
his life; indeed, he was so active politically that the U.S. government
kept him under surveillance for decades, compiling a 2000-page secret file
on his political activities. His most enduring scientific legacy, the
general theory of relativity — physicists’ reigning explanation for
gravity and the basis for nearly all our thinking about the cosmos — has
likewise been cast as an austere temple standing aloof from the
all-too-human dramas of political history. But was it so? This lecture
examines ways in which research on general relativity was embedded in, and
at times engulfed by, the tumult of world politics over the course of the
twentieth century.

Professor Dashefsky discusses the “American Jewish Year Book 2015” with the CT Jewish Ledger

The Center’s Director Emeritus, Professor Arnold Dashefsky, recently spoke with the CT Jewish Ledger about the “American Jewish Year Book 2015.”

Arnold Dashefsky

From the article:
“We feel that we have an historic responsibility. Fifty years from now, somebody will want to know something about the Jewish population or about an organization and it’s true that you can find a lot of these things on the Internet. But as far as the infrastructure of the American Jewish community – the 400 or 500 pages that we have listing all the organizations, press, scholarly contributions, transitions in terms of the awards that people have won, and obituaries – you won’t know that 50 years from now, except if you look at the Year Book.”

To read the article, click here.

ISA Honors Awards for Undergraduate International Studies Research

We live in a globalizing world. Every day, each of us encounters people, forces, and events that require us to think and work across traditional political, social, cultural, and geographic boundaries. As a result, the Office of Undergraduate Research, in collaboration with the International Studies Association’s Headquarters and UConn’s Office of Global Affairs, is seeking proposals for undergraduate research in the international studies field.


Proposals should fall within the following broad guidelines:

  • Focus on a social science project that spans across countries, regions, or the globe. Single country studies will be given lower priority.
  • Budget requests should be for no more than $1,000 and must clearly explain all requested expenses.
  • Travel to conferences to present research will not be funded. However, travel to conferences for research purposes will be considered. Travel costs incurred as part of UConn coursework are not eligible for this award.
  • Students should clearly specify the topic, theory, and methods of focus in their proposal.

It can take up to 6 weeks for an ISA Honors Award to be approved and for funds to be disbursed, so early application is encouraged. You must apply a minimum of 4 weeks before you travel.

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis and awards are made until funds are exhausted.

11/30/16 – Road Show Presentation at Congregation Rodeph Sholom in Bridgeport

Light_of_HanukkahOn November 30th at 7:00 PM, Professor Stuart Miller will present a “Road Show” lecture entitled “The Real Miracle of Hanukkah: Why Everyone’s Favorite Minor Festival Should be Considered a Major One” at Congregation Rodeph Sholom in Bridgeport, CT.
The historical events leading to the first celebration of Hanukkah were a turning point in the history of Judaism that forever changed the trajectory of Jewish existence.
This lecture will make the case that the meaning of Hanukkah has been trivialized and that a better appreciation of the festival’s history can lead to a more meaningful spiritual experience and celebration.

11/17/15 – Nuremberg at 70: Commemorating the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg

Stephen RappOn Tuesday, November 17 at 4:00 PM, Ambassador Stephen J. Rapp, an Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues, 2009-2015 for the Office of Global Criminal Justice, U.S. Department of State will present a lecture commemorating the international military tribunal at Nuremberg.

This lecture is will take place in the Konover Auditorium in the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center, and is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact the Dodd Center at

11/16/15 – Holocaust Claims: Recovering from Swiss Banks and the German Government

Leonard OrlandOn Monday, November 16 from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM, Professor Leonard Orland, who taught at UConn School of Law for more than 30 years, will return to share his experience participating in two groundbreaking compensation programs for Holocaust victims.
A 1996 class action against Swiss banks for accounts of Jewish depositors resulted in a recovery of $1.25 billion, the background of which Professor Orland reveals in his 2001 book, “A Final Accounting: Holocaust Victims and Swiss Banks.” A second program established by the German government awarded billions of dollars to compensate victims forced to live in Jewish Ghettos or sent to concentration camps.
In connection with the program, Germany authorized the Conference on Jewish Material Claims against Germany to administer a claims process for victims. Professor Orland has recently been appointed by the Claims Conference as an appellate magistrate to review cases in which awards were terminated because of fraud.
This event is sponsored by the UConn School of Law and will take place at the Reading Room in William F. Starr Hall, 45 Elizabeth Street, Hartford, CT.
For more information or to RSVP, click here.

Post-doctoral Fellowship in Latin Talmud studies (Barcelona)

The  Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona is taking applications for  a  three-year post-doctoral fellowship linked to the ERC-project the “Latin  Talmud” directed by Prof. Alexander Fidora.

Candidates should have at least two years of post-doc experience and a  thorough background in Hebrew and Aramaic and/or Latin studies.

Deadline: February 2, 2016


Emily Sigalow to Present “Making Meditation Jewish” | Nov. 12, 2015

Emily SigalowOn November 12th, Emily Sigalow will be presenting a faculty colloquium entitled “Making Meditation Jewish: The Construction of a New Contemplative Jewish Practice.”

Emily Sigalow is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Sociology at Brandeis University. Her research and teaching interests focus on the sociological study of contemporary Jewish life, particularly as related to questions about culture, gender, and health. She is working on a book project about the historical and contemporary encounter between Judaism and Buddhism in America. This book project, American JUBU, explains how Judaism and Buddhism met, combined, and changed in relation to each other in America since 1893. She holds a Ph.D in Near Eastern and Judaic Studies and Sociology (joint degree) from Brandeis University, a M.A. from Ben Gurion.

Date: November 12, 2015

Location: BUS302 at 1:00 PM

Open to faculty, staff, students – Please join us!

December 18, 2015 – Upcoming Road Show Presentation

DSC_0002The Center’s Road Show is a traveling program where our faculty donates their time to present in the community at various synagogues, community centers, and area high schools on topics of choice in an open and engaging format. Response to this program has been phenomenal, with interest from all across the state.

On December 18th, Associate Professor Jeremy Pressman will be presenting on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict at the Jewish High School of Connecticut.


Poetry Reading with Jacqueline Osherow | Nov. 11, 2015

Along with UConn Creative Writing, the Center is co-sponsoring a poetry reading on Wednesday, November 11 at 6:00 PM, at the UConn Co-Op Bookstore in Storrs Center.

jacqueline osherowJacqueline Osherow received her BA from Radcliffe College, Harvard University, and her PhD from Princeton University. She is the author of several collections of poetry, including “Hoopoe’s Crown” (2005). Her debut collection, “Looking for Angels in New York” (1988), was chosen for the Contemporary Poetry Series. She has been awarded the Witter Bynner Prize by the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, several prizes from the Poetry Society of America, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Ingram Merrill Foundation. She is a Distinguished Professor of English at the University of Utah, where she directs the Creative Writing Program.

For more information and to RSVP.