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Sephardi Mizrahi Studies Caucus Discussion List - Week of April 11, 2004


Association for Jewish Studies Sephardi/Mizrahi Studies Caucus Discussion List

Editor/Moderator: Aviva Ben-Ur<aben-ur(at)>

Week of Sunday, April 11, 2004 (20 Nissan 5764)






1.        Note from Editor/Moderator (Ben-Ur)

2. Association for Jewish Studies Call for Papers (Sheramy)

  1. Announcement: Jewish Museum in Istanbul (Simon)
  2. Course in Judeo-Spanish Language and Literature in Estonia (Santa Puche)
  3. Call for Contributions, *Murcia-Sefarad* (Santa Puche)
  4. Lecture: “Sephardim in America” at FIU (Zohar)
  5. Lecture: “The Rabbi and the Sheikh” at FIU (Zohar)
  6. Lecture: “The Book of Esther” at FIU (Zohar)
  7. New Book Publication:  *Making Jews Modern: Yiddish and Ladino Press in the Russian and Ottoman Empires* (Stein)

10.        New Publication: *Farewell to Salonica* (Schofield)

11.        Query: Accessing Sheet Music for *Antología de Liturgia Española* (Saxe)

12.        Query: Connections between Ottoman and Sephardi Cooking (Dorsey)



1. Note from Editor/Moderator (Ben-Ur)


My apologies to List members for the delay in dispatching this issue, a delay related to my residence in Providence, RI this semester.  Thank you for your patience.


Aviva Ben-Ur


2. Association for Jewish Studies Call for Papers (Sheramy)


Date: Tue, 30 Mar 2004 23:34:11 -0500

Via: Anna Urowitz-Freudenstein <hjmod(at)OISE.UTORONTO.CA>


The Association for Jewish Studies is now accepting proposals for its 36th Annual Conference, to be held December 19-21, 2004 at the Hyatt Regency Chicago in Chicago, Illinois.  Online submissions accepted at  Proposals in all fields of Jewish studies will be considered.  Proposal deadline: Monday, April 26, 2004.  For further information, see the AJS website or contact the AJS office at

ajs(at) or 917.606.8249.


Rona Sheramy

Executive Director

Association for Jewish Studies

15 West 16th St.

New York, NY 10011


3.  Announcement: Jewish Museum in Istanbul (Simon)


Date:     Wed, 18 Feb 2004 08:23:03 -0500

From:     Rachel Simon <rsimon(at)Princeton.EDU>


The Jewish Museum of Istanbul, the first and only one in Turkey now has a website, active both in Turkish and English:




4.  Course in Judeo-Spanish Language and Literature in Estonia (Santa Puche)


From: salvasanta salvasanta(at)

Date: Fri, 13 Feb 2004 00:30:44 +0100


Kerido haverim,


Mos plaze poder anunsiarvos ke entre la fin del mez de fevrero i el mez de marzo sera echo en la universidad de Tartu, Estonia, un kurso sovre lingua i literatura djudeo-espanyola para los elevos estonianos de estudios ispanikos.


Este kurso es realisado grasias al apoyo de la embashada de Espanya, ansi ke a los amatores de esta kultura en este paiz baltiko, komo el profesor i gran amigo de los sefaradim Ricardo E. Mateo Durand.


Mos parese una gran novedad ke estos mansevos i futuros ispanistas konoskan la kultura sefaradi.

En serka tiempo vos embiaremos mas informasion.

Shalom a todos,



Dr. SANTA PUCHE, Salvador

Tfn: 968-792197/968-752131

Fax: 968-752131


5. Call for Contributions, *Murcia-Sefarad* (Santa Puche)


From: salsan salsan(at)

Date: Tuesday, December 31, 2002 6:33 PM


Keridos haverim,


Komo savesh ay una semana fue prezentada la Asosiasion 'Legado Sefardí de la Región de Murcia', asosiasion ke kere prezervar el pasado djudio de esta rejion de Espanya.

Los butos de esta asosiasion son:


1. Difundir i enkorajar los estudios djudios.

2. Kolaborar endjunto a la Universidad de Murcia en la kreasion del 'Sentro de Estudios Sefaradis'.

3. Prezervar los restos arkeolojikos djudios de esta rejion (entre eyos dos sinagogas).

4. Organizar enkontros internasionales sovre kultura sefaradi, en el marko del Festival Internasional Tres Culturas ke organiza el Munisipio de Murcia en kolaborasion kon otros munisipios.


Mos agrada poder anunsiarvos ke ya topimos finansiasion para krear la resvista semestrala 'Murcia-Sefarad'. Es por eyo ke vos eskrivo afin de demandarvos una kolaborasion para esta revista.


En esta kolaborasion vos rogamos de avlar kuala es vuestra opinion de la kultura sefaradi, sus esperansas, sus problemos, kuales kreyesh ke son sus

problemas prinsipales para transmitirla, porke es importante topar esta erensia... i una salutasion para esta revista! Vos ruego ke, si akseptash a kolaborar, me embiesh los artikolos en dokumento Word, kon una ekstension de 4-5 ojas antes del 30 de disiembre, ama vos ruego de dizirme si vash a kolaborar. Mersi muncho,


Dr. SANTA PUCHE, Salvador

Tf: 968-792197

Fax: 968-752131


6. Lecture: “Sephardim in America” at FIU (Zohar)


From: Zion Zohar zoharz(at)

Date: Thu, 05 Feb 2004 17:44:45 –0500


[Note from Editor/Moderator Aviva Ben-Ur: The following three lectures are announced post-facto in order to disseminate information about recent scholarship and FIU’s excellent Sephardic programming]


Florida International University

Institute for Judaic and Near Eastern Studies,

President Navon Program for the Study of

Sephardic and Oriental Jewry,

The Academy for Lifelong Learning,Yovel, Hillel & the Office of the Vice Provost are very proud to present:


"The 350th Anniversary of The Sephardic Jews in America"  

By: Prof. Jonathan Sarna


Thursday February 19, 2004 at 7:30pm

Kovens Conference Center Ballroom at the

Biscayne Bay Campus (For Directions see below).


Dr. Jonathan Sarna is one of America's foremost commentators on American Jewish history, religion and life. Born in Philadelphia, and raised in New York and Boston, he attended Brandeis University, the Boston Hebrew College, Merkaz HaRav Kook in Jerusalem, and Yale University, where he obtained his doctorate in 1979.


Dr. Sarna came back to Brandeis in 1990 to assume the new Joseph H. & Belle R. Braun Professorship in American Jewish history in the Department of Near Eastern & Judaic Studies. He served two terms as chair of that department, and now chairs the Academic Advisory and Editorial Board of the Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives in Cincinnati, where he also serves as consulting scholar.

Dr. Sarna has written, edited or co-edited twenty books, including The American Jewish Experience, a reader; People Walk On Their Heads, a volume dealing with Jewish immigrant life in New York, Jacksonian Jew, a biography of Mordecai Noah; JPS, a cultural history of the Jewish Publication Society; and with Ellen Smith, The Jews of Boston, an illustrated scholarly history of that community. His most recent books are entitled Religion and State in the American Jewish Experience; Women and American Judaism: Historical Perspectives; and Jews and the American Public Square.


Articles, reviews, and commentaries by Dr. Sarna appear regularly in scholarly and popular journals, as well as Jewish newspapers across North America. In addition, he sits on half-a-dozen editorial committees and reviews Jewish books for the Boston Globe.


Dr. Sarna is now completing a new interpretive history of American Judaism to be published by Yale University Press. He is married to Professor Ruth Langer, and they have two children, Aaron and Leah.


7.  Lecture: “The Rabbi and the Sheikh” at FIU (Zohar)


Date:     Mon, 26 Jan 2004 16:44:28 -0500

From:     Zion Zohar zoharz(at)


“The Rabbi and the Sheikh-A Tale of an Inter-Faith Quest and a Human Relationship in 18th Century Damascus,” by Prof. Zvi Zohar (Bar Ilan University, Ramat Gan, Israel and the Shalom Hartman Institute of Jerusalem)


Monday, February 2, 2004 at 7:30 pm, Kovens Conference Center at the Biscayne Bay Campus (Florida International University)


An amazing account, published in 1842 by a leading Sephardic rabbi of Jerusalem, paints a fascinating picture of a personal, intellectual and spiritual relationship between Rabbi Yehonathan Galante (chief rabbi of Damascus in the late 18th century) and a contemporary Muslim Sufi Sheikh. The course of that relationship, culminating in a joint mystic-spiritual journey, provides insights relevant to the possibility of Muslim-Jewish religious encounter and dialogue then - and now.


Dr. Zvi Zohar of Bar Ilan University and the Shalom Hartman Institute in Israel, who discovered and researched this fascinating document, will analyze it (in English translation) and discuss its contents and meanings.


Zvi Zohar heads the Rappaport Center for Assimilation Research and the Strengthening of Jewish Vitality at Bar Ilan University, and is a Senior Research Fellow at the Shalom Hartman Institute of Advanced Judaic Studies in Jerusalem, where he heads the Alan A. and Loraine Fischer Family Center for Contemporary Halakha. He is also a founding faculty member of Paideia - The European Institute for Jewish Studies in Sweden. His most recent publications include Realms of Identity and Deviance [an analysis of halakhic positions vis a vis desecrators of the Sabbath, from Talmudic times to the present] (co-authored with Avi Sagi), Tel-Aviv (HaKibbutz HaMeuhad press) 2000, and The Luminous Face of the East - Studies in the Legal and Religious Thought of Sephardic Rabbis of the Middle East, Tel-Aviv (HaKibbutz HaMeuhad press) 2001.


For more information please call Prof. Zion Zohar from the Navon program for the study of Sephardic and Oriental Jewry.


8. Lecture: “The Book of Esther” at FIU (Zohar)


Date:     Tue, 02 Mar 2004 15:44:00 -0500

From:     Zion Zohar <zoharz(at)>


Florida International University

Institute for Judaic and Near Eastern Studies,

The President Navon Program for the Study of

Sephardic and Oriental Jewry & Yovel*

proudly present:


"The Book of Esther -Thought and Exegesis in the Sephardic and Oriental Jewish Traditions"



Prof. Isaac Kalimi

Distinguished Rosenthal Professor in the Department of Classics Case Western Reserve University


Monday, March 15th, 2004

at 6:00pm in Wolfe University Center room 245 at the Biscayne Bay Campus


In the Hebrew month of Adar, Jews worldwide observe the holiday of Purim and reread the Biblical book of Esther. This lecture will critically survey the place of the Book of Esther within Jewish literature, Biblical commentaries, art, tradition and even among various Jewish groups from the earliest times until the modern period, paying special attention to the Sephardic and Oriental Jewish communities. Dr. Kalimi will explore the absence of the book from among the manuscripts of the Dead Sea Scrolls, its place within the Hebrew Bible, post-Biblical as well as rabbinical literature and exegesis. He will demonstrate that the book addresses a specific fear of annihilation that existed among the Jewish people from the dawn of their history to the present day.  In addition, he will reveal how the book offers a unique religious message for Jews in all generations and places, particularly in the Diaspora.


Dr. Kalimi is the Distinguished Rosenthal Visiting Professor in the Department of Classics at Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland, OH), and Professor of Biblical Studies and Jewish History at the Graduate Spertus Institute for Jewish Studies in Chicago. Professor Kalimi is also an Associate member of the Leiden Institute for the Study of Religions at the University of Leiden, and served as Visiting Professor in several universities, such as in the Universities of Luzern, Oldenburg, Kampen, Boston, and Chicago (DePaul). He gave many invited lectures in distinguished institutions in Israel, Europe and America. His area of academic specialty is the ancient history of the Jewish people, Biblical and Rabbinic literature, and Jewish exegesis. Professor Kalimi holds a B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He has published many books and numerous articles in leading international journals in several languages (English, Hebrew and German) including Early Jewish Exegesis and Theological Controversies: Studies in Scriptures in the Shadow of Internal and External Controversies, and his forthcoming books, An Ancient Israelite Historian: The Chronicler, His Time, Place, and Writing, and The Reshaping of Ancient Israelite History in Chronicles which will be coming out this year.



9. New Book Publication:  *Making Jews Modern: Yiddish and Ladino Press in the Russian and Ottoman Empires* (Stein)


From: Sarah Stein sstein(at)

Date: Mon, 26 Jan 2004 08:44:55 -0800 (PST)


New Book Publication:  Sarah Abrevaya Stein, *Making Jews Modern:  Yiddish and Ladino Press in the Russian and Ottoman Empires* (Indiana University Press, 2003).


On the eve of the 20th century, Jews in the Russian and Ottoman empires were caught up in the major cultural and social transformations that constituted modernity for Ashkenazi and Sephardi Jewries, respectively. What language should Jews speak or teach their children? Should Jews acculturate, and if so, into what regional or European culture? What did it mean to be Jewish and Russian, Jewish and Ottoman, Jewish and modern? Sarah Abrevaya Stein explores how such questions were formulated and answered within these communities by examining the texts most widely consumed by Jewish readers: popular newspapers in Yiddish and Ladino. Examining the press's role as an agent of historical change, she interrogates a diverse array of verbal and visual texts, including cartoons, photographs, and advertisements. This original and lively study yields new perspectives on the role of print culture in imagining national and transnational communities; Stein's work enriches our sense of cultural life under the rule of multiethnic empires and complicates our understanding of Europe's polyphonic modernities.


Sarah Abrevaya Stein is Assistant Professor in the Department of History and the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies at the University of Washington.


Ordering information may be found at the following website:



10.  New Publication: *Farewell to Salonica* (Schofield)


From: Will Schofield wschofield(at)

Date: Thursday, March 18, 2004 2:08 PM


[Note from Editor/Moderator Aviva Ben-Ur: Having used this book in my own class, I highly recommend this book for courses in Ottoman and Sephardic literature and history.  While it focuses on Salonika, it also includes reflections on immigration to the United States.]


Paul Dry Books, a small press based in Philadelphia, recently reprinted "Farewell to Salonica" by Leon Sciaky. Our authorized reprint of this Sephardic classic (first published in 1946) includes a new afterword by the author's son, maps, photographs, and a Publisher's Note which provides some historical background. In "Farewell to Salonica," Leon Sciaky writes about growing up at the turn of the twentieth century in Salonica, which at that time was an economic center of the Ottoman Empire and a cultural center of Sephardic Jewry.


"Farewell to Salonica" gives today's readers a fascinating view into a nearly forgotten world. When it was first published, the New York Times called it "a fresh and charming book that throws a kindly light on a sector of human life unknown to most Americans."


Farewell to Salonica is available for $14.95 through Sephardic House, your local bookseller, and from our website: Professors can purchase exam copies for $5.00; please get in touch.


Thank you,

Will Schofield

Paul Dry Books

Tel: 215-231-9939  Fax: 215-231-9942

---------------------------------------------------------11.  Query: Accessing Sheet Music for *Antología de Liturgia Española* (Saxe)


From: Stephen Saxe sjsaxe(at)

Date: Monday, March 22, 2004 3:54 PM


Can readers assist with the following:


I am interested in finding out how to get sheet music that would be found in the "Antologia de Liturgia Espagnoles" by Isaac Levy.  I would appreciate any help that you might be able to give me in this regard.  Please respond directly to me at: sjsaxe(at)


Thank you.

Stephen J. Saxe, M.D., F.A.C.S.

Clinical Assistant Professor

Department of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences

Vitreoretinal Service

Kellogg Eye Center

University of Michigan

1000 Wall Street

Ann Arbor, MI  48105

Tel.:  (734) 615.9690


12. Query: Connections between Ottoman and Sephardi Cooking (Dorsey)


Date:     Thu, 05 Feb 2004 15:45:03 +0200

From:     "James M. Dorsey" jmdorsey(at)


In connection with a project I am working on regarding Ottoman cookery, I wonder whether there is any one on your list has looked at the interaction between Ottoman and Sephardi cooking?  Any suggestion would be very welcome. Please respond both to the List

(aben-ur(at) and directly to me (jmdorsey(at)  Thank you and best regards,


James M. Dorsey

Quest Ltd.

Tel:  +90-532-2149750

Fax: +31-84-8837430


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