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Sephardi Mizrahi Studies Caucus Discussion List - March 12, 2006

Association for Jewish Studies Sephardi/Mizrahi Studies Caucus Discussion List

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

Week of Sunday, March 12, 2006 (12 Adar 5766)


For archived issues please visit:


1. Report on International Seminar: The Jewish Heritage of Kerala, India (Glatzer)

2. Call for Papers: Conference on Jews of Florida (Greenspahn)

3. Call for Papers: Midwest Jewish Studies Association (Shanes)

4. Call for Papers: Bibliography and the Study of Cultural Transfer Commemorating Moritz Steinschneider (Freudenthal)

5. Call for Papers: Mapping Arab Diasporas Conference, April 27-29, 2006 (Shrestha)

6. Call for Book Proposals in Religious and Jewish Studies (Romer)

7. Call for Grant Proposals: Recovering the U.S. Hispanic Literary Heritage Project, Religious Thought (Reyes and Villarroel)

8. Mark and Ruth Luckens International Prize in Jewish Thought, 2007 (Leaman)

9. New AJS Website (Sheramy and Baskin)

10. Seeking Contact Information for Marcos Cavallero and Genealogical Information on the Cavallero Family (Lee)


1. Report on International Seminar: The Jewish Heritage of Kerala, India (Glatzer)

Date: Tue, 28 Feb 2006 12:41:43 +0200

From: Michael Glatzer <bzi(at)>

[Note from Editor/Moderator Aviva Ben-Ur: At my request, Dr. Glatzer has sent to the List a description of this conference.]

An international seminar on the Jewish Heritage of Kerala (“The Cochin Jews”) was held in Angamaly, Kerala between February 20 and 23, 2006. The conference, sponsored by the Association for Comparative Studies, Kerala, with the support of the Ben-Zvi Institute, Jerusalem, and the Jewish Study Program of Ithaca College, New York, brought together about 40 scholars from India, Israel, the U.S.A. and Europe for a discussion of the history and culture of the Jews of Kerala, particularly in the context of the pluralistic culture of South India.

The conference was organized by Prof. Scaria Zacharia of the Sree Sankaracharya University of Sanskrit, Kalady, Kerala, who is the secretary of the Association for Comparative Studies. Prof. Zacharia prepared the Malayalam text of the Jewish Women’s Songs from Kerala, published by the Ben-Zvi Institute in 2005, under the title Karkulali – Yefefiah – Gorgeous – Jewish Women’s Songs in Malayalam with Hebrew Translations.

In addition to the many papers presented at the conference, the participants visited six synagogues in Kerala, including the newly restored Chennamangalam synagogue which has become a Jewish Museum and the still functioning Paradesi Synagogue in Mattancherry (Cochin).

     For more details please me at the email address below.

Michael Glatzer

Academic Secretary

Ben-Zvi Institute

POB 7660 Jerusalem 91076





2. Call for Papers: Conference on Jews of Florida (Greenspahn)

Date: Mon, 6 Mar 2006 16:14:22 -0500

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

From: Frederick Greenspahn <greenspa(at)>

Florida Atlantic University announces a conference on "The Jews of Florida," to be held on January 14-15, 2007. The program committee seeks proposals from presenters in all fields, including demography, history, religion, culture, literature, and politics.  

Research papers on all aspects of Jewish life in Florida are welcome, as are student submissions.  Possible topics might include patterns of migration to and from Florida, demographic change, cultural diversity, interfaith relations, Florida Jews in the context of American and world Jewry, and Jewish electoral politics.  Inquiries about other possible topics are welcome.

Those selected to participate will be expected to make original, oral presentations of their material in a manner suitable for an audience that includes the general public, undergraduate students, and other scholars. Financial support will be provided.  

Proposals, including a 200 word abstract and complete cv as well as mailing address, e-mail address, and telephone number(s), are due by April 7, 2006 and may be submitted by mail or e-mail.

 For further information, contact:        

 Frederick E. Greenspahn

 Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts & Letters

 Florida Atlantic University

 777 Glades Road, P.O. Box 3091

 Boca Raton, Florida 33431-0991

 (561) 297-0645



3. Call for Papers: Midwest Jewish Studies Association (Shanes)

Date:  Mon, 6 Mar 2006 16:17:48 -0500

From: "Joshua Shanes" <jmshanes(at)>

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

Call for Papers

The eighteenth annual conference of the Midwest Jewish Studies Association (MJSA) will be held September 10-11, 2006 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The conference is hosted by the Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion.

 The conference welcomes proposals in all areas of Jewish Studies: from any discipline (history, philosophy, literature, religion, sociology, music, etc.) and from any time period (ancient to contemporary). The MJSA encourages panelists to address pedagogical aspects of their topics, and papers centered on pedagogical issues are most welcome.

 All interested scholars and professionals of Jewish Studies, including advanced graduate students, are cordially invited to submit proposals for papers, presentations, and workshops. Proposals may be for complete sessions or for individual papers. Proposals must include a 200-word abstract defining the primary themes, conclusions and sources utilized in the research as well as a complete CV. Session proposals must include abstracts for 2 to 3 papers, CVs for all participants, a general explanation of how the papers are related and what the general significance of the panel is, as well as the name of the chair of the proposed session. Individuals willing to chair a session (rather than give a paper) are invited to submit a CV, with an indication of areas of expertise.

 This year, Hebrew Union College has generously offered to open its superb library and archives to all participants, during and after the conference.

  Tours of the library and the American Jewish Archives will also be available.

 The deadline for the submission of proposals for individual papers or complete sessions is May 1, 2006. Please direct all inquiries and submissions to: Joshua Shanes, Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies, 618 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605; e-mail: jshanes(at)

Joshua Shanes


4. Call for Papers: Bibliography and the Study of Cultural Transfer Commemorating Moritz Steinschneider (Freudenthal)

Date: Sun, 5 Mar 2006 21:41:29 -0500

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

From: Gad Freudenthal <freudent(at)>

Call For Papers

Bibliography And The Study Of Cultural Transfer: A Moritz-Steinschneider Centennary Celebration

                                                          Staatsbibliothek Berlin, 20-22 November 2007

 Moritz (Moshe) Steinschneider (1816-1907) was the first scholar who, qua accomplished bibliographer, investigated systematically the multiple processes of cultural transfer that created the intellectual basis of modern Western civilization. While Steinschneider devoted the greater part of his energy to Jewish literary history, he regarded it as an element in the integrated history of our European-Middle Eastern civilization. Steinschneider, indeed, was interested above all in the continuity of the transmission, study and further elaboration of ideas and conceptions that emerged in Ancient Greece and continued to thrive in Greek, Syriac, Pahlavi, Arabic, Hebrew, and Latin, until they were absorbed into various national languages. Steinschneider’s bibliographical tools and literary histories laid the ground to the study of the processes of cultural transfer that took place around the Mediterranean during some two millennia.

 A Steinschneider Centennial Conference, to be held on 20-22 November 2007 at the Statsbibliothek in Berlin, will mark the hundredth anniversary of Steinschneider’s death. Its decidedly non-hagiographic purpose is to celebrate the man and the scholar, discuss in their contexts his monumental contributions to the study of the history of civilization, and, last but not least, reflect on the future of the kind of studies begun by Steinschneider.

 The underlying conviction guiding the planning of the conference is that Steinschneider should be viewed as the historian of a single if multifaceted diachronic unit the intellectual tradition that began in Greece, was carried forward in various centres in Late Antiquity and in the Arab empires, from whence it passed to the West. By avoiding any kind of ethnocentrism, especially euro-centrism, Steinschneider was well ahead of his times.

 The conference will consist of two parts:

 I. Steinschneider and his times. This part will be devoted to scholarly investigations of Steinschneider’s work with the particular aim of situating it within its multiple historical contexts. The number of possible themes is practically endless: What were Steinschneider’s objectives, motivations, and presuppositions? How does his work relate to the Wissenschaft des Judentums and to the religious movements in 19th-century Judaism? How is it connected to the academic disciplines of his time (philology, “Orientalistik,” history, codicology, etc.)? Did Steinschneider develop a Weltanschauung of his own? To what networks did he belong? How was he received in different quarters during his lifetime and during the 20th century? What were his positive contributions to each of the very numerous disciplines to which he devoted his attention? What were his relationships to the institutionalized Jewish community in Berlin? What motivated his involvement with “popular education”? And many more. Although Steinschneider will be the focus of this part of the conference, the treatment should by no means become hagiographic: rather, speakers will be expected to approach their topics critically.

II. Bibliography and the history of ideas in the 21st century. The second part of the conference will focus upon bibliography and the history of ideas in the 21st century. Using Steinschneider’s bibliographies today, we are constantly confronted with questions such as: what are the place and role of comprehensive surveys or bibliographies of knowledge transfer in our own digitized age? Can the bibliographer be replaced by the computer, so that works of the kind produced by Steinschneider are superseded by digitized databases? Is there a need for a trusted “gate keeper” evaluating and selecting information which becomes ever more accessible through the Internet? How should we plan future bibliographies?

 Proposals of papers (2-3 pages) in English (preferably) or German should be submitted simultaneously to Hans Hinrich Biesterfeldt [hinrich.biesterfeldt(at)], Rachel Heuberger [r.heuberger(at)], and Gad Freudenthal [freudent(at)]. Deadline for submissions: 15 May 2006. It is hoped that the travel and accommodation expenses of participants whose papers will be selected can be paid by the conveners.

Gad Freudenthal


5. Call for Papers: Mapping Arab Diasporas Conference, April 27-29, 2006 (Shrestha)

Date: Tue, 07 Mar 2006 10:30:48 -0500

From: sshresth(at)

I am writing on behalf of the Center for Arab American Studies (CAAS) at the University of Michigan- Dearborn. We invite submissions to the Mapping Arab Diasporas Conference on April 27-29, 2006. Organized by the Center for Arab American Studies, the first and only academic center in the world dedicated to the study of people of Arab descent who live in the Americas, the conference brings together junior and senior scholars, public intellectuals, cultural workers, and activists to network, exchange ideas, and analyze the current as well as the historical experiences of displacement and exile. If you are interested, please send an abstract and bio at your earliest convenience and no later than 5pm EST, Monday, March 13, 2006. I am sorry for the short notice, but we are about to finalize the publicity for the conference.

The post-9/11 atmosphere of Islamaphobia and racial profiling of Arabs, Central and South Asians and the targeting of immigrants for detention and deportation makes the study and analysis of the relationship of marginalized diasporic communities to the countries in which they live an absolute necessity- both intellectually and politically. In so doing, we planned a conference that accounts for race/ethnicity, gender/sexuality, class and wealth, citizenship and immigration status, and other structural inequalities that shape and influence the lives and experiences of Arabs in the diaspora and their interaction with their socio-political context.  In challenging geographically bounded area studies, we hope that the conference will highlight the centrality of transnational networks through which immigrant communities maintain their links at home with the homelands from which they or their ancestors descended.

Finally, this conference also builds on the mission of the Center for Arab American Studies to contribute to a better public understanding of Arab experiences and concerns in the Americas, and to the promotion of a culture of justice, dignity, tolerance, and peace, for peoples of all racial, ethnic, religious, and cultural groups.

 We look forward to receiving your abstract in the next few days. In the mean time, please feel free to contact me with any questions or for further clarification.

Best regards,

Sriya Shrestha

CAAS Graduate Research Assistant

Coordinator, Mapping Arab Diasporas

University of Michigan-Dearborn

4901 Evergreen Road, SSB, Suite 2200

Dearborn, MI 48128-1491

Phone: +1.313.583.6334

Fax: +1.313.583.6700

email: sshresth(at)

[Note from Editor/Moderator Aviva Ben-Ur: Interested scholars should note that Mr. Shreshtha contacted me directly for prospective participants.]


6. Call for Book Proposals in Religious and Jewish Studies (Romer)

Date: Wed, 08 Mar 2006 11:55:38 -0800

From: Brian Romer <bromer(at)>

I'm the Religious Studies and Jewish Studies editor with Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. I'm looking for authors who are writing, or interested in writing, in this area.

Rowman & Littlefield is a leading independent publisher of scholarly works, classroom texts, and academic trade titles throughout the humanities and social sciences. We have many exciting new developments happening in our publishing program and I would love to talk with others about how we might be a good fit for their work.

Thanks in advance, and with all best wishes,

Brian Romer, Acquisitions Editor

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.


[ed: very slight edit.  Interested Sephardi/Mizrahi Studies authors should note that Mr. Romer contacted me directly as Editor/Moderator of this List.]


7. Call for Grant Proposals: Recovering the U.S. Hispanic Literary Heritage Project, Religious Thought (Reyes and Villarroel)

Date: Thu, 9 Mar 2006 10:16:11 -0600

From: "Reyes, Patricia R" <PReyes(at)Central.UH.EDU>

Call For Proposals

Recovering Hispanic Religious Thought In The United States

Call For Proposals

 Recovering Hispanic Religious Thought in the United States is a project to foster the study of the written legacy of Hispanic religious thought prior to 1960. As such it entails compiling the definitive bibliography of religious publications by Hispanics, published in the United States, microfilming periodicals and books in danger of disintegration from printing on acid paper, and making accessible these documents to scholars for their study and commentary.

 Scholars and advanced graduate students are encouraged to apply for a stipend of up to $3,000 for research work in one of the following areas:

* Identification, location, recovery and/or study of any of the Hispanic religious texts published in the United States before 1960, including such forms as periodicals, letters, sermons, catechisms, memoirs, magazines, pamphlets, worship/liturgical materials, parish/congregational/synagogue histories, etc.

* Study across denominations and religious traditions, including Christian, Indigenous and Jewish religions, in any language including Spanish, English, Ladino, French, Italian, and Indigenous languages.

* Bibliographic indexing and cataloguing of data pertaining to any of the above.

* Study of recovered Hispanic primary religious documents, manuscripts, publications, or source(s).

* Identification, evaluation, acquisition, classification and preservation of archival materials in private, public and/or institutional collections that meet the aforementioned criteria.

Deadline: April 15, 2006

Sponsor: Education, Media, Arts and Culture Program of the Ford Foundation

For applications and guidelines, please write, fax, e-mail or download from the web page:

Thank you,

Carolina Villarroel

Recovery Project Coordinator

Recovering the U.S. Hispanic Literary Heritage University of Houston

256 Cullen Performance Hall  

Houston, TX 77204-2006

Tel: 713-743-3128

Fax: 713-743-3142

E-mail: carolina(at)


8. Mark and Ruth Luckens International Prize in Jewish Thought, 2007 (Leaman)

Date: Mon, 6 Mar 2006 16:21:29 -0500

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

From: "Oliver Leaman" <oliverleaman(at)>

The University of Kentucky is pleased to sponsor the Mark and Ruth Luckens International Prize in Jewish Thought. The Luckens Prize, commemorating a generous gift by the late Dr. Mark M. Luckens to the University, is administered, judged, and awarded by faculty at the University of Kentucky. The Prize is awarded annually for an essay in the field of Jewish thought by a graduate student or recent PhD or someone of equivalent status.

General details of the competition are that the essay should be original and unpublished, and of around 5000 words. Essays are welcome in the following languages: English, Hebrew, French, German, Yiddish, Arabic, Spanish, Italian, Persian or Turkish. The winner will receive a cash award of $1000 and is expected to deliver a lecture based on the essay on campus during the Spring Semester 2007, for which travel and ground expenses shall be provided. The lecture should be given in English.

 Essays are due no later than November 1, 2006. The result of the competition will be announced no later than January 15 2007.

 Any inquiries should be directed to Oliver Leaman. Essays should be directed to him as either an email attachment or in paper form, or both.

Oliver Leaman

Director, Judaic Studies Program

University of Kentucky

1415 Patterson Office Tower

Lexington KY 40506-0027




9. New AJS Website (Sheramy and Baskin)

Date: Wed, 1 Mar 2006 14:12:05 -0500

From: Association for Jewish Studies <ajs(at)>

Dear Friend,

 We are pleased to announce that the AJS's new website can now be found at Please bookmark this page in your web browser; visitors to the AJS's old site will be redirected to our new location.  

 We have restructured our website with the aim of offering visitors a user-friendly resource for AJS and Jewish studies information.  Over the coming year, we will introduce new features to the site to facilitate contact with our offices and each other. We would also like to rotate the images on the website, and we encourage visitors to contact the AJS office (ajs(at) if you have personal photographs of sites or objects connected with Jewish history and culture that you would be willing to share.  Any feedback you have regarding the site is welcome.

 Please note that the online proposal submission site for the AJS's 38th Annual Conference, to be held December 17 - 19, 2006 at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego, California, can now be accessed through the AJS homepage (select link "Proposal Submission Site").  Information regarding exhibiting and advertising at the annual meeting will be available later this spring .  We look forward to seeing you in San Diego.

 Best wishes,

 Judith R. Baskin,


 Rona Sheramy,

 Executive Director

 Association for Jewish Studies

 15 W. 16th Street

 New York, NY 10011

 Phone: 917.606.8249

 Fax: 917.606.8222


 Judith R. Baskin, President

 Rona Sheramy, Executive Director


10. Seeking Contact Information for Marcos Cavallero and Genealogical Information on the Cavallero Family (Lee)

Date: Sun, 05 Mar 2006 16:50:46 +0200

From: Carmelita Lee <wordworks(at)> or <bratnella46(at)>

At the last Jewish Genealogy conference there was a speaker on July 7th at 4:30 that afternoon, and his topic was researching the names of Cavaller, Cavallero and Caballero.  His name was Marcos Caballero.  He apparently lives here in Israel.  Also, there was another link on the internet that said he included something akin to our family line being distantly related to Napoleon.  Do readers have his contact information?

I, too, live in Israel now, and was flabbergasted to see someone with my family name delivering up such an interesting topic (to a Caballero, anyway.) I have been doing genealogy for years, and stumbled on all this information years ago.  Me and a whole bunch of cousins (whom I've never met) have been linking up our family for about 12, 15 years, now, and I would love to meet an expert on the years we haven't been able to get to, and it sounds like Mr. Caballero might be our "missing" link.

Thank you for any help you can give me.

Carmelita (Caballero) Lee,

(formerly of Texas, Arizona and California)

Hod HaSharon, Israel

[ed: very slight edit]

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