Past Programs


Note:  All speakers/presenters are identified by their institutional affiliation at the time of their participation.  Many have since moved on to other institutions or retired, and some have passed away.

 Spring 1986

  • Great Jewish Thinkers

          Leon J. Goldstein (SUNY Binghamton), “Philo”

          Norman Stillman  (SUNY Binghamton), “Maimonides”

          David Biale (SUNY Binghamton), “Rosenzweig”


  • The Holocaust 

           Deborah Hertz (SUNY Binghamton), “Three Main Causes”;                        “Machinery of Murder”

           Steven Katz (Cornell University), “Theological & Philosophical               Responses”


  • Black-Jewish Relations in America

          David McBride  (SUNY Binghamton), “The American Revolution              and Slavery”

          Paul Finkelman  (SUNY Binghamton), “Blacks, Jews and Urban              America”

          David McBride and Paul Finkelman (SUNY Binghamton,                          “Black/Jewish Protest”

 Fall 1986

  • Modern Hebrew :  Introductory Course

    Shalom Shoer   (JSU Coordinator at SUNY Binghamton)


  • Festival of Jewish Arts – Music

    Sam Chianis  (SUNY Binghamton), “ Ethnic Music”

    Judith Fertig  (Consultant for UAHC), “Synagogue Music”   

    Philip Friedheim  (SUNY Binghamton), “American-Jewish Composers”


  • Festival of Jewish Arts - Theater and Cinema
            Michael Taub  (SUNY Binghamton), “Romanian Yiddish Theater”
            Atay Citron  (Tel Aviv University, Israel), “Jewish Pagentry in U.S.                     Cinema”


    · Festival of Jewish Arts – Art

           Tobi Kahn (artist), “Jewish Arti-fact and Fiction”

    Cissy Grossman  (curator), “Jewish Meaning in 20th Century”


·       Festival of Jewish Arts – Literature

            Milton Kessler (SUNY Binghamton), “American Jewish Poetry”

            Barry Targan (SUNY Binghamton), “American Jewish Fiction”

Spring 1987

  • Three Genres of Rabbinic Literature

Samuel Morell (SUNY Binghamton), “Midrashic Literature”; “Talmudic Discourse”; “Medieval Biblical Commentray”   


  • American Jewish Experience

Rabbi Lance Sussman (SUNY Binghamton), “In the Beginning 1654-1820”; “The Jewish   Community of New York”; “Organizing the Zionist Movement”


  • American Jewish Biography

Paul Finkelman  (SUNY Binghamton), “Louis D. Brandeis”

Melvyn Dubofsky (SUNY Binghamton), “Sidney Hillman and the Labor Movement”

Edward Weisband (SUNY Binghamton), “Henry Kissinger”

 Fall 1987

 ·       The Literary Character of Biblical Narrative – six classes

             Gary Rendsburg   (Cornell University)


·       The City of David

               Jan Gunneweg  (Hebrew University, Jerusalem), “The Archeology                   of Jerusalem”


·       Modern Hebrew – Beginner, Advance Beginner – twelve sessions   

                Shalom Shoer  (SUNY Binghamton) 

 Spring 1988


·       The Golden Age of German Jewry

Allan Arkush  (SUNY Binghamton), “Out of the Ghetto: The Life and Thought of Moses Mendelssohn”; “Brothers or Strangers? German Jews & Jews of Eastern Europe”; Fatherland or Promised Land? German Jews and Zionism”

Rabbi Elihu Schagrin  (Temple Concord), “Integration or Assimilation? German-Jewish Basis of American Judaism”   

Judy Fertig (UAHC -  PA Region), “The Musical Legacy of the German Synagogue: Presentation of the Music of Salomon Sulzer and Louis Lewandowski”


Fall 1988


·       The Middle East in Turmoil

Norman Stillman (SUNY Binghamton), “Jews & Arabs, Historical Encounter”; “The Struggle for Palestine: When Nationalisms Collide”

            Laurie Mylroie (Harvard University), “From War to War: Israel and                Its Neighbors”

         Don Peretz  (SUNY Binghamton), “The Palestinians-Another                 Perspective”

         Yosef Olmert (Tel Aviv University), “The Many Shades of Israeli              Politics”


A Panel Discussion-  Differing Points of View

           N. Theodore Sommer  (Attorney), moderator

           Werner Dannhauser   (Cornell University), Panelist

           Carrie Rosefsky   (Princeton University), Panelist

           Don Peretz (SUNY Binghamotn), Panelist

           Lance Sussman (SUNY Binghamton), Panelist

           Michael Taub (SUNY Binghamton), Panlist


Spring 1989


·       Religion, Politics and Jewish Communities Around the World

             Yosef Olmert (Tel Aviv University), “The Situation in Israel”

             Alice and Alexander Nakhimovsky (Colgate University), “The                         Situation in the Soviet Union”

      Lance Sussman  (SUNY Binghamton) , “The Situation in the United          States”


·       Yiddish Literature: Sholem Aleichem:Jewish Life Through Humor -         four classes  

            Michael Taub   (SUNY Binghamton)


Fall 1989


·        American Jewry Facing the 21st Century

Rabbi Wolfe Kelman (Jewish Theological Seminary of America), “Toward an Agenda for American Jews”

Raphael Danziger (American Jewish Congress), “Israeli/American Jewish Relations: New Forms and Directions”

Shelly Tenenbaum (Clark University), “The Changing American Jewish Community: Will It Thrive or Decline?”

Lance Sussman (SUNY Binghamton), “The Uncertain Future of the American Synagogue”

Zev Hymowitz(Jewish Welfare Board), “Trends in Jewish Communal Life: Problems and Priorities”


Spring 1990


·       Jewish Humor – Past & Present

       Philip Klass (Historian of Jewish Humor), “Jewish Humor Across            the Atlantic”

        Joseph Landis (Queens College of CUNY), “Folk Humor”

Michael Steinlauf  (Gratz College), “From Purimshpil to Yiddish Theater: Every Day a Purim”

Michael Taub  (SUNY Binghamton) & Bill Gorman (Vestal High School), “Humorous Readings from Famous Authors”


Fall 1990


·       Diaspora Today

Rabbi Elihu Schagrin (Temple Concord), “Jewish Life in Australia: The Edge of the  Diaspora”

Yedida Stillman and Norman Stillman,(SUNY Binghamton) , “The Jews of Morocco: Past, Present, and Future”

Rabbi Andre Ungar (Temple Emanuel in Woodcliffe Lake, NJ), South Africa: Jews Under Apartheid and After”

Michael Steinlauf (Gratz College), “Remembering the Place” Traces of the Jewish Past in Contemporary Poland”


 Spring 1991


·       Digging into the Past:  Jews from the Year One

Stanley Isser (SUNY Albany), “Greco-Roman Period: An Audio Visual Presentation of Jewish Life in the 1st Century”

Reverend Carl E. Roemer (Chaplain at Binghamton Psychiatric Center), “Jesus and 1st Century Judaism”

        Yaakov Elman(Yeshiva University), “New Light on the Dead Sea            Scrolls”


Fall 1991


·       Israel in the 90’s- Politics and Society

Mitchell Cohen  (Bernard Baruch College of CUNY), “The Politics of Israel: Past & Future”

Joel Bainerman  (Economic Affairs Columnist, The Jerusalem Post), “Impact of Ethiopian and Soviet Jewish Aliyah”

Samuel Heilman (Queens College of CUNY), “No Separation of Religion and State: The Case of Israel”



Spring 1992


·       The Sephardic Experience – Commemorating the 500th                              Anniversary of the Expulsion of Jews from Spain

Renee Levine-Melamed (Franklin & Marshall College), “The Crypto-Jews (Marranos) of Spain”

        Rabbi M. Mitchell Serels (Yeshiva University), “Sephardic Customs         & Languages”

Reginetta Haboucha  , “(Lehman College, CUNY), “Image of Women in Judeo-Spanish Oral Narrative”



Fall 1992


·       On One Foot: Basic Judaism in Seven Sessions

Rabbi Lance Sussman (Temple Concord and Binghamton University), “From Abraham to Ben Gurion: A Bird’s Eye View of Jewish History”; From Moses to Herzl” A Thumbnail Sketch of Jewish Literature”

Rabbi Mark Raphael  (Temple Israel), “Service of the Heart: Meaning & Structure in  Jewish Prayer”; “A Day of Delight: What It Means to Rest on the Sabbath”

Rabbi Ronald Weiss (Beth David Synagogue), “The year Goes Round: The Jewish Holiday Cycle”; “Living as a Jew: Life Cycle and Home Observances”


Orthodox, Conservative and Reform: A Panel Discussion

          Rabbi Lance Sussman (Temple Concrod)

          Rabbi Mark Raphael (Temple Israel)

          Rabbi Ronald Weis (Beth David Synagogue)


·       Jews in American Politics

Rabbi Lance Sussman  (Temple Concord & Binghamton University), “ Jews in American Political Culture -1654 to the Present”

        Martin Belsky (Albany Law School), “Your Constitutional Rights as a         Jew in America”

        Martin Edelman (University of Albany), “Israel and the Politics of            American Jewry”



Spring 1993


·        A Lost World and Its Fight for Survival : The 50th Anniversary of             the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising)                 

         Allan Nadler(YIVO Institute for Jewish Research), “The Spiritual              Resistance”

          Michael Taub (Binghamton University), “Inside the Warsaw                      Ghetto”

          Michael Steinlauf (Gratz College), “Recovering a Lost Civilization”



Fall 1993


·       Basic Judaism II

         Rabbi Ronald Weiss (Beth David Synagogue), “Anti-Semitism”

          Rabbi Mark Raphael (Temple Israel), “The Holocaust”

          Rabbi Lance Sussman (Temple Concord) “Israel and Zionism”


·       A Jewish Journey from the Middle Ages to the Beginning of                   Modernity

       Norman Stillman (Binghamton University), “Jews of Islam in the            Middle Ages”

    Samuel Morell (Binghamton University), “The World of Ashkenaz:     Jews of Christian Europe before the Dawn of Modernity”

    Allan Arkush (Binghamton University), “Between Spinoza &             Shabbetai Zvi: Jewish Life in the 17th Century”



Spring 1994


·       The Jews of Germany - Their Long Life and Sudden Death

Ruth Gay (Author ), “Inventing the Diaspora - From Israelites to Jews”; “From Jews to Germans - The Price of Leaving  Home”



 Fall 1994


·       The Changing Role of Women in Judaism

Rabbi Susan Grossman (Genesis Agudas Achim Congegration,Westchester, NY), “The Changing Role of Women in Judaism:An Historical Overview”

Rivka Haut   (Founder, Women’s Tefillah Network, Flatbush Women’s Davening Group), “Women in the Orthodox World”

Rabbi Randi Musnitsky (Temple Emanuel in Cherry Hill, NJ), “The Struggle for Religious Equality”

Great Books of the Jewish Tradition in seven sessions:

         Rabbi Lance Sussman (Temple Concord), “The Tanach (The                 Hebrew Bible)”

  Rabbi Mark Raphael (Temple Israel), “The Sidur (The Prayer          Book)” ; “Jewish Philosophy(Medieval & Modern)”

  Rabbi Asher Vale (Beth David Synagogue), “Torah She’Be-al          Peh:The Oral Tradition, Talmud, Midrash, Codes”

         Rabbi Aaron Slonim (Chabad of Binghamton), “The Zohar and                 Jewish  Mysticism”


Spring 1995


·       Jewish Activism

        Debra Dash Moore (Vassar College), “A Century of Jewish                     Activism - An Overview”

Gerald Sorin (SUNY New Paltz), “The Roots & Persistence of Jewish Liberalism: Why Jews Vote the Way They Do”

        Danny Siegel (author, lecturer and poet), “Tzedakah & Jewish                Values”



Fall 1995


·       American Jews and the Christian Right: Allies or Adversaries?

Reverend William Harter (Presbyterian Church of Falling Spring, Chambersburg, PA), “Patterns, Problems, and Prospects: The Rise of the Religious Right and Implications for Jews and Israel”

Jeremy Rabkin (Cornell University), “The Jewish Place in the Christian Coalition”

Isaac Kramnick(Cornell University), “The Godless Constitution: The Case Against the Christian Right”



 Spring 1996


·        Jerusalem: Past, Present and Future

      Gary Rendsburg (Cornell University), “Jerusalem 3000: An                       Archaeologist Scroll”

              Nitza Rosovsky (writer & lecturer), “Jerusalem Outside the Walls:                 1860 to the Present”  

       Eyal Zisser (Cornell University & Tel Aviv University), “Jerusalem           and the Peace Process”


·       Exploring the Wisdom of the Talmud : An Introduction in Six Weeks

        Henry Abramson (YIVO & Cornell University)



Fall 1996

 ·       Elections ’96 -  Israeli & American

     Milton Esman  (Cornell University), “Religion & Elections 1996:             The US and Israel”

 Joshua Teitelbaum (Tel Aviv University), “Election 96 and US        Foreign Policy in the Mid-East: Continuity or   Change”

 Donna Robinson Divine (Smith College), “The Israeli Election and     the Middle East Peace Process: The Palestinian Arab Perspective”


  • Introduction to Yiddish in six classes

        Jack Weinstein   (Binghamton University)



Spring 1997


·       From Here to Eternity: Jewish Views on the Afterlife

Marc B. Shapiro (University of Scranton), “Afterlife and Immortality in Early Rabbinic Thought”

Michael Zank (Boston University), “Death as a Gate to Life- Reflections on Death, Resurrection and the World to Come in Modern Jewish Thought”

Shmuel Shepkaru  (Binghamton University), “A Golden Throne Under the Tree of Life: Martyrdom & Afterlife in the Life Medieval Jews”


·       How to Read the Bible – six classes:

        Gary Rendsburg  (Cornell University)



Fall 1997


·       A Hundred Years of Jewish Nationalism:  Where Did It Come From         and Where is it Going?”

Allan Arkush (Binghamton University), “The Foundations of Zionism

       Mark Raider (SUNY Albany), “The Road to Jewish Statehood”

       Yirmiyahu Yovel (Hebrew University, Jerusalem), “Will Israel Remain         a Jewish State?”



Spring 1998


·       A Jewish Studies Institute

Rabbi Barry Baron (Temple Israel), “Comparative Judaism: Conservative, Orthodox, Reconstructionism & Reform”;   “Who is a Jew? Rabbinic Sources on Conversion" 

Rabbi Lance Sussman (Temple Concord), “History of Biblical Judaism”; “Post Biblical Judaism"

Rabbi Aaron Slonim (Chabad of Binghamton), “Soul Journeys: Where Do Souls Come From? What are they doing on earth? Where do they go to from here?”; “Tikkun Olam: Retrieving the Sparks and Perfecting Ourselves and the Entire World” 

Rabbi Asher Vale (Beth David Synagogue), “Angels and Devils: Do Jews Believe in Them?”; “Assisted Reproductive Technology”



Fall 1998


·       The World of Jewish Literature

       Beth Burch (Binghamton University), “Voice of the American                    Jewish Woman Writer”

Adina Ofek (Jewish Theological Seminary of America), “What Do Modern Israeli Writers Write About?”

Ken Frieden (Syracuse University), “Wedding Practices in the Shtetl Through Yiddish Literature  and Film”



Spring 1999


·       Sephardi Jews

Norman Stillman ( University of Oklahoma), “Not in Somber Colors: The Sephardi Artistic Heritage”


·       A Jewish Studies Institute

Rabbi Barry Baron (Temple Israel), “Theology of the Prayer Book: What the Prayers teach Us About G-D”;  “Where is G-d?  Finding Your Personal Theology”             

Rabbi Aaron Slonim (Chabad of Binghamton) “Jewish Time :Origins of the Jewish Calendar”;  “Wrestling with the Divine: An Analysis of Various Jewish Responses to Suffering”

Rabbi Lance Sussman  (Temple Concord) , “Jews of Eastern Europe: Our Shtetl Roots”;   “Anti-Semitism in America”             

Rabbi Asher Vale (Beth David Synagogue), “Ecology: Is It Good for the Jews?”;  “Domestic Violence: Do Jewish Men Really Make Better Husbands?"



Fall 1999


·       Jewish Artistic Expression Through the Ages

             Ross Brann (Cornell University), “Literary Artistry and The Jews of                  Spain”

              Shai Burstyn (Tel Aviv University & Cornell University), “What Do I                  Find Interesting About Israeli Folk Songs”

       Owen Shapiro (Syracuse University), “Reflections of Jewish Identity        in the Cinema”



Spring 2000


·        Israel and the Diaspora in 2000 and Beyond

Yaron Sideman (Consulate General of Israel in New York), “The Peace Process: Where is it Going?”  

       Martin Edelman(SUNY Albany), “The Disestablishing of Orthodox           Judaism in Israel”

Mia Bloom (Cornell University), and Allan Arkush(Binghamton University), “Zionism, Post Zionism, and the ‘New Historian’:Two Perspectives”     



Fall 2000


·       Spirituality: The Contemporary Jewish Quest

Iris Petroff (Temple Society of Concord, Syracuse, NY), “Family Educaiton: Making Jewish Learning a Family Event”

       Rabbi David Sykes(Yeshiva University), “Jewish Spirituality:Coming         Closer to G-d”

Jane Marie Law (Cornell University), “Fusing Mind & Heart- A Scholar of Asian Religions Living a Jewish Religious Life”



Spring 2001


·       Food For Thought

Rivkah Slonim (Chabad of Binghamton),”L’Chaim: Wine Throughout the Ages in the Jewish Tradition”

Ruth Abusch-Magder (Lecturer and Author), “Kitchen Torah: Cookbooks as Jewish Texts”

Rabbi Lance Sussman (Temple Concord), “The ‘Treife Banquet’ of 1883, and the Politics of Kashrut in American Judaism”



Fall 2001


·       Jewish Music:…That Beat Goes On

Mark Kligman    (Hebrew Union College), “An Overview of Synagogue Music from Chazzanut to Sing-Along”

Henry Sapoznik  (Producer, Author, and Performer), “Klezmer: Jewish Music from Old World to Our World”               

Jonathan Karp (Binghamton University), “The Jews and the Blues: Blacks & Jews in American Popular Music”



Fall 2002


·       Jewish Identity in the New Millennium

Peggy Echt, Gil Efrati, Brian Smollett, Larisa Vaynshteyn  (Binghamton University), “Students’ Perspectives”

     Avraham Infeld (Hillel), “Challenges for Jewish Leadership in the         21st Century”



Spring 2003


·       Perspectives on Anti-Semitism

Jay L. Rubin (Hillel), “Are University Campuses Hotbeds of Anti-Semitic & Anti-Israel Activities?”

Sanford Gutman (SUNY Cortland), “The New Anti-Semitism in France : Variations on an Old Theme?”    

       Jonathan Karp (Binghamton University), “Philo-Semitism: Who               Loves the Jews & Why?”



  Fall 2003


·       Adam’s Rib: Male and Female in Jewish Mysticism

      Donald Weiss (Binghamton University), “Martin Buber’s Mysticism of         Love”

Rivkah Slonim (Binghamton Chabad), “The Mystery of Za & Nukvah: Male & Female Imagery in the  Kabbalah”

        Rebecca Lesses (Ithaca College), “Lilith & Early Jewish Magic”



Spring 2004


·       350 Years of American Jewish History: From 1st Settlement to                Settlement Houses

      Arthur Kiron (University of Pennsylvania), “Mythologizing 1654”

Rabbi Lance Sussman (Congregation Keneseth Israel, Elkins Park, PA), “The Liberty Bell as Symbol of the American-Jewish Synthesis”

Beth Wenger (University of Pennsylvania), “Soldiers, Service, & Symbols:  The Narratives of Jewish Patriotism”



Fall 2004


·       The Lost Wooden Synagogues of Eastern Europe

    Award-winning Documentary Film, presented by Albert Barry,                 Executive Producer



Spring 2005


·  60 Years Later:  the Holocaust in German Television, American Film &     Jewish   Literature

    Wulf Kansteiner (Binghamton University), “West German Television     & the Holocaust"

    Danny Anker (Film Director and Producer), “Imaginary Witness:             Hollywood & the Holocaust”

Julian Levinson (University of Michigan), “Speaking for the Victims: American Jewish Writers and the Ethics of Holocaust Representation”



Fall 2005


·     The Road Less Traveled:  Exotic Jewish Communities

Barbara Johnson (Ithaca College), “Cochin Jewish Women in South India and Israel: An Introduction to Their Lives and Music”

Alanna Cooper (University of Massachusetts), “The Bukharan Jews: A Cosmopolitan and Parochial Central Asian Community”

               Lila Balla (Binghamton University), “Beta Israel: An Introduction to                   Ethiopian Jewry” 



Spring 2006

 ·        Revealing Moments:  Mt. Sinai -  What Really Happened? Four                  Rabbis Debate

                            Rabbi Zev Silber (Beth David Synagogue)

              Rabbi David Katz (Temple Concord)

              Rabbi Simeon Kolko(Temple Israel)       

              Rabbi Aaron Slonim (Chabad of Binghamton)


Fall 2006


·       Tradition and Change in Hebrew Literature

     Adina Ofek (Jewish Theological Seminary), “A New Look at Old             Hebrew Textbooks”

 Ken Frieden (Syracuse University), “Yiddish in Modern Hebrew          Literature”

  Samuel Morell (Binghamton University), “ Between the Worlds of      Faith & Modernity: A Discussion of S. Y. Agnon”


 Spring 2007


·       Viva Italia!  Jewish Life and Culture

Howard Tzvi Adelman (Binghamton University), “The Lives of Jewish Women in Italy: The Struggle for Ambiguity”

Francesca Bregoli (University of Pennsylvania), “Be-siman Tov : Decorated Wedding Poems and Riddles from Italy”

Beno Weiss (Pennsylvania State University), “Italo Svevoand the Dilemma of his Jewish Identity”                       


 Fall 2007


·       Jews & Music:  A Social, Cultural & Historical Perspective

     Joshua R. Jacobson (Northeastern University), “The Music of             Zionism”

Jonathan Karp (Binghamton University), “Killing Tin Pan Alley: Bob Dylan & the (Jewish) American Songbook”

               Morty Hofstein (Opera lecturer), “Jews and Opera: A Vibrant                           History”


 Spring 2008


·       Israel at 60

             Irit Koren (Columbia University), “Israeli Judaism Today”

             David Tal (Tel Aviv University), “The Meaning of the Israeli Victory in              the 1948 War”

Natan Aridan (Ben-Gurion University), “Israel-Diaspora Relations,1948-2008: A Retrospective”


Fall 2008


·       Perspectives on Russian/Jewish History

Donald Loewen (Binghamton University), “One Country, Many People:  Efforta to ‘Manage’ Nationalities in Russia and Soviet Union”

Olga Litvak (Clark University), “Stepchildren of the Czar: Jewish Cantonists Between Russian State and Jewish Society”

Mark Raytenberg (Binghamton University), “Isaac Babel and the Experiences of Russian Jews Throughout the Communist Regime”   


Spring 2009


·       Jewish Film Program

                “Jellyfish”  a film by Shira Geffen and Etgar Keter

                “Yippee:  A Journey to Jewish Joy” a documentary directed by Paul                 Mazursky

                Ken Frieden (Syracuse University) , “ Discussion of Yippee”   


Fall 2009


·       Historical Perspectives:  Jews in Business

Onur Yildirim (Binghamton University), “Jews in Ottoman Ecomonic Life during the Early Modern Period”

Glenn Dynner (Sarah Lawrence College), “Jews in the Polish Liquor Trade”

Shelly Tenenbaum (Clark University), “Lenders and Borrowers Be: Jewish Immigrant Credit Networks”


Spring 2010


·       Jews in Business:  Old & New Worlds

Rabbi Lance Sussman (Keneseth Israel, Philadelphia), “Jews in Business in Broome County: A Brief Histry”

Adam Mendelsohn (College of Charleston), “The Rag Race: Jews and Old Clothes in America”

Jonathan Karp (Binghamton University), “A Rock ‘n’ Roll Internationale: Jewish Record Men in the U.S. and U.K”

Gina Glasman  (Binghamton University), “Gelt in Eastern European Jewish Life”


Fall 2010


·       Lincoln, FDR, & Truman, and the Jews

Laurel Leff   (Northeastern University), “FDR and the Jews: Why the Holocaust Wasn’t a Presidential Priority”

Gary P. Zola  (Hebrew Union College,), “ ‘He Was One of Us’: American Jewry and  the Idealization of Abraham Lincoln”

Rabbi Lance Sussman  (Keneseth Israel, Philadelphia), “ Yes But …Harry Truman, American Jews, and the U.S. Recognition of Israel"


Spring 2011


·       Jews, Presidents, & Emperors

Howard G. Brown (Binghamton University), “Napoleon & the Great Sanhedrin: From the State of Jews to Jews of the State”

Paul Finkelman  (Albany Law School), “Two American presidents in the 19th Century: Millard Fillmore and Abraham Lincoln Confront the Jewish Question



Fall 2011


·       Jews in Muslim Lands

Norman Stillman (University of Oklahoma), “When Arabic Was A         Jewish Language”

Sara Reguer  (Brooklyn College), “Jewish Women Within the World     of Islam”

Vivienne Roumani-Denn (filmmaker), “The Last Jews of Libya: A Documentary Film and Discussion”

Peter Cole and Adina Hoffman(writers), “Sacred Trash :The Lost and Found World of the Cairo Geniza"


Spring 2012


·       Jewish Troublemakers of the 1960’s

Jonathan Karp (Binghamton University), “Lenny Bruce:  From Tummler to Troublemaker”

Lauren Strauss (George Washington University), “Her Hat Was in the Ring:  Bella Abzug and her Life as a ‘Trouble-Maker’”

Gal Beckerman (Author and Journalist at The Forward), “Meir Kahane:  The Radical Rabbi of New York”      


 Fall 2012


·        Is the Supreme Court a Friend of the Jews?

              Paul Finkelman (Albany Law School)



Spring 2013

 ·       Israel at 65

Eli Groner (Israel’s Minister of Economic Affairs to the US), “The Secret Sauce to a Start-Up Nation?  How Israeli Innovation Created a Miracle in the Desert”

    Norman Stillman (University of Oklahoma), “Israel Still lives in a        Tough Neighborhood”



Fall 2013

 ·       Gender & Judaism:  Changing Perspectives

Rabbi Avi Weiss  (Hebrew Institute of Riverdale, Yeshiva Chovevei Torah), “The  Changing Role of Women in Orthodoxy”

  Amy Kronish  (lecturer and writer on Israeli Cinema), “Gender          Issues in Israeli Cinema”

Candace Falk  (University of California,  Berkeley), “Chutzpah & Courage in the Face of Injustice:  Emma Goldman’s Unorthodox  Mishmash of Judaism, Feminism, & Anarchism”



Spring 2014

 ·       Jews Making A Difference

Debra Schultz  (Historian), “Legacies of Jewish Women Going           South for Justice”

Thomas Doherty  (Brandeis University), “Jews, Nazis and Hollywood Cinema, 1933-  1939”

Jonathan Krasno (Binghamton University), “Is There A ‘Jewish Vote’   Today?”



 Fall 2014

 ·       Jewish Comedy, Chocolate, and Commerce

Mark Cohen (Author), “Allan Sherman: The Life, the Hits, and Lost           Recordings”

Rabbi Deborah Prinz (Rabbi and author), “Jews on the Chocolate Trail: A Delicious Adventure Connecting Jews, Religions, History, Travel, Rituals & Recipes to the Magic ofCacao”

Hasia Diner (Professor, New York University), “Roads Taken: The Great Jewish Migration and the Peddlers Who Made It Possible”


Spring 2015

 ·       Jews from Main Street to Wall Street

Michael Cohen (Tulane University), “Cotton and Capital: Jewish Economic Networks in the 19th Century Gulf South”

Leonard Rogoff (Historian and writer), “Commerce in the Countryside:Jews and the Making of the New South”

Susie Pak (St. John’s University), “J.P. Morgan and German Jewish American Bankers: Writing the History of Networks”



Fall 2015

 ·       Weaving Jewish Tradition with American Culture

Beth S. Wenger (University of Pennsylvania), “Civics Lessons:  Jews and American National Holidays”

Motl Didner( National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene), “American Yiddish Theater:   Past, Present, & Future”               

Samuel D. Gruber  (Art and Architectural Historian),” American Synagogue Architecture from 1760-1920”



Spring 2016

 ·       Viewing of “Joachim Prinz: I Shall Not be Silent”

Jonathan Karp (Binghamton University) – discussion of film

 ·       What’s New at BU? Faculty, Research and Resources in Judaic             Studies


Panel on Recent Developments in Ottoman Jewish History

Dina Danon (Binghamton University), “Satirical Passover Haggadot from the Sephardi World.” 

Bryan Kirschen (Binghamton University), “The Rise and Fall of Judeo-Spanish in Turkey and Bosnia.”

Jonathan Karp (Binghamton University), Moderator


Panel on The New Center for Israel Studies

Shay Rabineau (Binghamton University)

Randy Friedman (Binghamton University)


Fall 2016


Eat, Drink, and Be Kosher


Ted Merwin (Dickinson College), "Homeland for the Jewish Soul: The Jewish Deli in American Life and Lore"

Rivkah Slonim (Chabad of Binghamton), "L'Chaim: Wine Throughout the Ages in the Jewish Tradition”

Timothy Lytton (Georgia State University, Georgia College of Law), “ "The Turbulent History of Kosher Certification in            America: From Price Fixing, Consumer Fraud, and Drive-by    Shootings to a Model of Private Regulation” 


 Spring 2017

    The Great War: A Turning Point for World Jewry?

                    Dina Danon (Binghamton University) "The End of  Empire:                                World War I and its Impact on the Eastern Sephardi Diaspora"

                       David Engel (New York University), "Making the World Safe for                        Jews: World War I and the Problem of Jewish Security"


                                                  Fall 2017

    Divided by Victory: The Legacy of the Six Day War

                    Lior Libman (Binghamtn University) "Between the The Seventh                        Day and 'The Movement for Greater Israel': The Aftermath of                         1967 in the Kibbutz and Labor Movements and the Significance                     of 1948"

                    Assaf Harel (Binghamton University) "Jewish Settlers Today:                            From  Religious Zionism to Religious Post-Zionism"

     Spring 2018  

    Speaking Through Art as a Jew: Visual Expressions of Jewish                 Culture


                      Diana Linden (Art Historian) "Painting for freedom and the                              Freedom to Paint: Ben Shahn's Murals and the M. S. St.                                  Louis"

                      Flora Rosefsky (Visual Artist), "Being a Judaic Visual Artist" A                          Personal Inspirational Journey"

                      Marc Michael Epstein (Vassar College), " People of the                                  Image: Jews and Art"

                                                Fall 2018

    The Legacy of the Turbulent Sixties:  Jews and Social Justice

                        Mark Rudd, (Educator and Community Organizer), “Why                             Were There So Many Jews in SDS? Reflections on SDS,                         Columbia1968 Protest, and the New Left"   


                       Dick and Mickey Flacks (UC - Santa Barbara), "Making                           History/Making Blintzes: How Two Red Diaper Babies                           Found Each Other and Discovered America"   

      Spring 2019

        Rethinking "the Ghetto" in Jewish History and Beyond

                        Mitchell Duneier (Princeton University),  “Ghetto: Invention of                               a Place, History of an Idea” 
                        Federica Francesconi (University at Albany), 
                        “From Venice to Rome: Jewish Girls and Women in Early-

                 Modern Italian Ghettos"   


                 Gina Glasman (Binghamton University) “Painting a Ghetto                      Paradise: The Political Artistry of Moritz Daniel Oppenheim”