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Sephardi Mizrahi Studies Caucus Discussion List - January 26, 2003

Association for Jewish Studies Sephardi/Mizrahi Studies Cacaus
Discuss List
Editor/Moderator: Dr. Aviva Ben-Ur <>
Week of Sunday, January 26, 2003 (23 Shevat 5763)


1. Fellowships: The Jewish Women’s Archive (Goldman)

2. Genealogy Fellowship (Center for Jewish History)

3. Danzig Post-Doctoral, Queens College (Kraut)

4. A Symposium on The Essence of Sephardic Women: Past, Present, and Future (Zohar)

5. UK Launch of *The Woman Who Defied Kings* on Dona Gracia Nassy (Brooks)


1. Fellowships: The Jewish Women’s Archives (Goldman)

Date: Thu, 9 Jan 2003 22:32:03 -0500
From: Karla Goldman <>
Via: Anna Urowitz-Freudenstein <>

The Jewish Women’s Archive seeks to appoint six fellows in 2003 to conduct research on Jewish women's formative roles in shaping community in cities across North America. The resulting articles will be published as part of an edited volume that will mark the 350th anniversary of American Jewish community to be celebrated in 2004-05. Successful proposals will be geared toward illuminating how Jewish women in different cities created, shaped, and sustained critical institutions and movements in both the Jewish and general communities. Research fellows may be graduate students or more advanced scholars and will receive $1000 during the period of their research and an additional $1500 upon submission of the completed essay. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis beginning on March 15, 2003. For more detailed information about the project and how to apply, contact the Jewish Women’s Archive at 617-232-2258, e-mail, or see

Karla Goldman
Historian in Residence
Jewish Women's Archive

2. Genealogy Fellowship (Center for Jewish History)

Via: HJ Newsletter Ed <>
Date: Thu, 09 Jan 2003 21:21:55 -0500 (EST)


The Center for Jewish History announces a Genealogy Fellowship, which represents each of the five constituents (American Jewish Historical Society; American Sephardi Federation; Leo Baeck Institute; Yeshiva University Museum; YIVO Institute for Jewish Research) and is intended for academic candidates. The award supports original research in the field of Jewish Studies, which focuses on a specific family whose history sheds light on broader themes in Jewish history, or which examines the history of Jewish family life. Preference may be given to those candidates who will draw on the resources of more than one collection. The fellowship carries a stipend of a minimum of $10,000 and is for a period of one academic year for one doctoral student who has completed all requirements save the dissertation (a.b.d.). It is expected that the candidate will:

* Conduct research using the Center archival and library resources for the duration of the stipend;
* Participate in a Center for Jewish History Seminar and deliver a minimum of one lecture (during or beyond the grant period) based on research at the Center and the collections used.

Open to qualified doctoral candidates in accredited universities.

Requirements for Application:
* Curriculum Vitae, including contact information, education, publications, scholarly and/or museum activities, teaching experience, and any other relevant work experience;
* Area of interest and knowledge of relevant languages stated in a cover letter, and how they relate to one or more of the constituent organizations' missions;
* Official graduate school transcript;
* Specific research proposal of no more than three pages, including aims for research during the period of the fellowship, whether there are plans for publication, and how the resources of one or more of the partner
organizations will contribute to the work;
* Three letters of recommendation, including from the students' academic advisors, which address the significance of the candidate's work for the field as well as the candidate's ability to fulfill the proposed work.

The schedule for application and award is as follows:
* Applications are to be mailed to the attention of Diane Spielmann, Director of Public Services at the Center for Jewish History;
* Receipt of application is due by February 1, 2003;
* Committee to review applications by March 15, 2003;
* Announcement of grant recipients by no later than April 1, 2003;
* Commencement of grant period, August 15 - September 15, 2003;
* Conclusion of grant period, June 30, 2004.

Visit the H-Judaic Website at:

3. Danzig Post-Doctoral, Queens College (Kraut)

Via: HJ Newsletter Ed <>
Date: Thu, 09 Jan 2003 21:21:55 -0500 (EST)

The Center for Jewish Studies at Queens College, CUNY, invites applications for the inaugural Rose and Morris Danzig Post-Doctoral Appointment, established by Carole and Arthur Anderman. The appointment is for one year, beginning mid-August 2003 and continuing through June 2004. Areas of interest are open, but preference will be given those specializing in Jewish history and thought.

Eligible candidates must have received their Ph.D. by June, 2003, and must have earned the doctorate not earlier than Spring 2001.

Responsibilities include teaching one course each semester, working on a research project for publication, and participating actively in the intellectual and cultural life of the Center, particularly in its faculty and student programs.

Interested candidates should submit the following:

* cover letter and cv
* list of preferred courses to teach
* description of the research project
* sample of writing (publication or dissertation chapter)
* 3 letters of recommendation

Stipend is $30,000 plus health benefits.

Review of applications will begin January 10, 2003 and will continue until the position is filled. Please send all materials to:

Post-Doctoral Appointment Committee
Center for Jewish Studies
Queens College
65-30 Kissena Blvd.
Flushing, NY 11367

4. A Symposium on The Essence of Sephardic Women: Past, Present, and Future (Zohar)

From: zion zohar <>

Florida International University
The Institute for Judaic and Near Eastern Studies,
President Navon Program for the Study of Sephardic/Oriental Jewry
Edna Gene and Jordan Davidson Endowment
Department of Religious Studies, Torat Moshe Congregation
and Yovel Present:

A Symposium on The Essence of Sephardic Women: Past, Present, and Future

Sunday, February 2nd at the Kovens center FIU's Biscayne Bay Campus
9:15 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Prof. Zion Zohar, Director of the Navon Program for the Study of Sephardic and Oriental Jewry, articulated that: "It is a well known clich? that every time we as Jews talk about the role of women in Judaism, we point to the four matriarchs or to Deborah the prophetess or to the rare episodes in Jewish history recording activities of Jewish women. But beyond the nostalgic apology, we all recognize full well that the vast majority of women's voices in Judaism in general remain silent. Not because they did nothing; rather because their contributions were neither recorded nor often valued.
The aim of this conference is to fill the gaps regarding our knowledge of Sephardic women, to uncover and publicize the significance of the Sephardic woman's role in the Jewish home, the Jewish community, and within Jewish history, to give honor to our foremothers, and to increase the pride in the role of Sephardic women in the local community and thus encourage more engagement in local communal life.

Scholars who will be giving presentations include:
Prof. Jane Gerber
Institute for Sephardic Studies, CUNY Graduate Center

Prof. Gerber earned her Ph.D. in Jewish and Islamic history at Columbia University. She received the National Jewish Book Award in Sephardic Studies in 1993 and was director for the Institute for Sephardic Studies in CUNY Graduate Center. She has been a visiting Prof. in universities such as Penn, Jewish Theological Seminary, Harvard, Yale, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Colombia, and Yeshiva University. Prof. Gerber has published many books such as The Jews of Spain in 1992, Jewish Society in Fez, Authority, Power, and Leadership in the Jewish Polity: Cases and Issues, and Perspectives on Israeli Pluralism. She is an expert in the fields of Jews in Muslim Lands, Sephardic/Oriental Jewry, and Sephardic and Middle Eastern History.

Prof. Pamela Dorn Sezgin
Agnes Scott College, Atlanta

Dr. Sezgin completed her Ph. D. and M.A. degrees from Indiana University where
she was one of the last students of the late an esteemed ethnomusicologist, Dr. Alan Merriam. Her research focuses on the roles of Sephardic Jewish musicians and rabbis in Ottoman Court life at the end of the empire. This work has been published in Jews of the Ottoman Empire (edited by Avigdor Levy, Princeton: Darwin Press, 1994) She is interested in music as a mirror of social change and culture as ideology.

Prof. Annette B. Fromm
Florida International University, Miami

Prof. Fromm is a folklorist and museum specialist. Her doctoral dissertation on folklore and ethic identity of the Jews of Ioannina, Greece was written for
Indiana University. She has conducted extensive field research in ethnic
communities across the United States and in Greece. Dr. Fromm has published
articles on the Jewish community of Ioannina, Greece, Sephardic folklore,
museums, multicultural museums, and folk art.

Moderator and Chair: Prof. Zion Zohar

The Symposium will be divided into three parts:

Part 1: Will take place from 9:30 am - 12:00 pm
Presentations regarding specific ethnic groups within the Sephardic Diaspora and the role and significance of the Sephardic woman as it was represented within the lifecycle events, including family and holidays

Prof. Annette B. Fromm :
The Role of Sephardic Women in the Life Cycle and Holiday Events
Prof. Pamela Dorn Sezgin :
Sephardi/Mizrachi Jewish Women in the Ottoman Empire

Part 2: Will take place from 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm
Keynote speaker: Prof. Jane Gerber will give a presentation on
From Poetry to Politics: Portraits of Jewish Women from Sephardic Lands

Part 3: Will take place from 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
Workshops on Present and Future Roles of Sephardic Women


Prof. Ruth Behar, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor will moderate a Workshop on Interethnic Marriages Between Sephardi and Ashkenazi Jews

Attorney Mazel Crespin will moderate a Workshop on The Treatment of Women: Issues of Abuse

Hon. Judge Fanny B. Ostrow will moderate a Workshop on Sephardic Life in the Modern World

Open to the public.
For lunch and the rest of the conference, please contact The American Sephardic Federation at: (305) 861-6308 (daytime) (954) 987-4658 (evenings).

For more information, call Dr. Zion Zohar, from the President Navon Program for the Study of Sephardic/ Oriental Jewry, at: (305) 919-5610 or (305) 933-3177

Directions: From Miami: Take I-95 north to 135th St., go east to US-1, go north to 151st St., turn right, continue the road, and the campus is on the left pass the electronic sign and turn left into the parking of the Kovens Center. From Ft. Lauderdale: Take I-95 south and exit on Miami Gardens Drive, turn left on the light to US-1, turn right to NE 151st St., turn left, continue the road, and the campus is on the left pass the electronic sign and turn left into the parking of the Kovens Center.

5. UK Launch of *The Woman Who Defied Kings* on Dona Gracia Nassy (Brooks)

From: Andree Brooks <>
Date: Monday, January 13, 2003 3:16 PM

You are invited to attend the UK launch of *The Woman who Defied Kings* - the first comprehensive biography of Dona Gracia Nasi to be based upon the original 16th century documents. It was published in the U.S. last June to some superb reviews.

The launch itself will take place on Tuesday, February 18th - 7.30 p.m. at the: London Jewish Cultural Centre, Kings College Campus, Kidderpore Avenue (midway between Platts Lane and Heath Drive) Hampstead, London, NW3. 7SZ. (Phone: 020-7431-0345) It is being organized by Dr. Joanna Newman, Director of Education at the Centre. We will begin with an informal reception followed by a talk. I will explain how I found the documents and the impact of Dona Gracia upon Jewish history.

For those unfamiliar with her life, she was born in Lisbon in 1510 at the height of the Renaissance. Early on she became an international banker, heading the House of Mendes, a bank similar to Rothschilds, albeit three centuries earlier. She used her fortune and access to the royal courts of Europe to develop an escape network that saved thousands of Jews from the Inquisition. She was a patron of the arts, a brilliant political operative and attempted a homeland for Jews five hundred years before the birth of the modern State of Israel. Along the way, this biography provides a window into the banking practices of the era, the situation of the Jews, the agony of the converso migrations and some surprising material about women‚s lives back then. It is fully annotated and illustrated/596 pages. The publisher is Paragon House of St. Paul, MN.

Andrée Aelion Brooks is a journalist, author and lecturer. For 18 years she was a contributing columnist and news writer for the New York Times. She recently directed a teaching series for 5-7th graders in Jewish congregational and day schools in Sephardic history and culture called Out of Spain ( In 1990, Brooks received the American Jewish Woman of Achievement award from the American Jewish Committee. In 2001, she received a special award from the Consulate General of Israel in conjunction with the American Sephardi Federation for her work in Sephardic Jewish History. She has also received an outstanding achievement award from the National Federation of Press Women, among dozens of news writing honors. Brooks is an Associate Fellow at Yale University and the founder and first president of the Women’s Campaign School at Yale (Law School). Further, she is the author of the award-winning book Children of Fast Track Parents (Viking-Penguin) that has since been developed into workshops for teachers, counselors and parents. A further work of Jewish history, called “Russian Dance,” (Simon & Schuster) will be published the end of this year. The author can be contacted at:

Andrée Aelion Brooks
15 Hitchcock Road
Westport, CT 06880 USA

Phone: 203-226-9834
Fax: 203-226-0814

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