Courses

Please consult the online course catalog for cross-listed courses and full course information.

The courses listed below are provided by Student Information Services (SIS). This listing provides a snapshot of immediately available courses within this department and may not be complete. Course registration information can be found at https://sis.jhu.edu/classes.

Column one has the course number and section. Other columns show the course title, days offered, instructor's name, room number, if the course is cross-referenced with another pogram, and a option to view additional course information in a pop-up window.

Hebrew Bible / Old Testament
AS.130.140 (01)

The Bible is arguably the most read and yet most misinterpreted book of all time, one of the most influential and yet most misapplied work of literature. The Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) is Scripture to Jews and Christians yet also a rich collection of literature w/ numerous literary genres that has been highly influential on secular Western culture. At its core, it is our most important literary source that (when wed with archaeology) helps us to understand the people and culture of Iron Age Israel and Judah. This is an introductory course surveying of the books of the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) giving primary attention to the religious ideas they contain and the ancient contexts in which they were composed. Topics include: The Academic Study of Religion, Ancient Creation Accounts, Ancestral Religion, The Exodus and Moses, Covenant, Tribalism and Monarchy, The Ideology of Kingship, Prophecy, Priestly Sources, Psalms, Wisdom Literature, and Apocalyptic Thought.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Lower Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 5/25
  • PosTag(s): n/a

History of the Jews in Modern Times, from the Middle Ages to 1917
AS.130.216 (01)

A broad survey of the significant political and cultural dynamics of Jewish history in the Medieval, Early-Modern, and Modern Eras.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Lower Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 11/20
  • PosTag(s): INST-GLOBAL, INST-NWHIST

In the Land of Others: Minorities in the Pre-Modern Mediterranean
AS.100.339 (01)

This course examines the socio-political, religious and cultural history of ethno-religious minorities in the pre-modern Mediterranean.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Canceled
  • Seats Available: 18/18
  • PosTag(s): HIST-EUROPE

Seminar In Anti-Semitism
AS.190.344 (01)

Jews exercise a good deal of power in contemporary America.. They are prominent in a number of key industries, play important roles in the political process, and hold many major national offices. For example, though Jews constitute barely two percent of America’s citizens, about one-third of the nation’s wealthiest 400 individuals are Jewish and more than ten percent of the seats in the U.S. Congress are held by Jews. One recent book declared that, “From the Vatican to the Kremlin, from the White House to Capitol Hill, the world’s movers and shakers view American Jewry as a force to be reckoned with.” Of course, Jews have risen to power in many times and places ranging from the medieval Muslim world and early modern Spain through Germany and the Soviet Union in the 20th century. In nearly every prior instance, though, Jewish power proved to be evanescent. No sooner had the Jews become “a force to be reckoned with” than they found themselves banished to the political ma rgins, forced into exile or worse. Though it may rise to a great height, the power of the Jews seems ultimately to rest on a rather insecure foundation. Cross-listed with Jewish Studies. Course is open to juniors and seniors.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 3/15
  • PosTag(s): INST-AP

Readings - Hebrew Prose
AS.130.442 (01)

Reading of biblical Hebrew prose, especially from the Pentateuch, Joshua, Judges, Samuel, and Kings. Cross-listed with Jewish Studies.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 8/10
  • PosTag(s): n/a

The Domestic Politics of Israel
AS.191.315 (01)

Israel’s politics and history are complex, involving multiple military conflicts, domestic struggles and dynamic international relationships. This course will focus on Israel’s domestic politics by tracing the story of the development of its party system and the parties the compose it. A parliamentary democracy with a proportional representation electoral system, Israel’s party system includes multiple parties who represent the various segments of Israeli society. What are the origins of this party system and the parties that compose it? What changes have they experienced and what are the factors that influence those changes? Who are the important actors and what might be motivating them? These questions and others will serve as our guide on a journey to a better understanding of Israel’s domestic politics.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 8/18
  • PosTag(s): POLI-CP, INST-CP

Spinoza’s Theological Political Treatise
AS.150.428 (01)

The class is a study of Spinoza’s theological and political thought as developed in his Theological-Political Treatise and the Political Treatise. Among the topics to be discussed are: Spinoza’s Bible criticism, the nature of religion, truth and obedience, God’s right and power, Spinoza’s theory of the State, the case study of the ancient Hebrew State, and the freedom to philosophize. Apart from a close reading of Spinoza’s two works we will also discuss Leo Strauss’ reading of Spinoza, and current work on Political Theology and their indebtness to Spinoza.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 9/15
  • PosTag(s): INST-PT

Elementary Biblical Hebrew
AS.130.440 (01)

Introduction to the grammar, vocabulary, and writing system of biblical Hebrew.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 4/10
  • PosTag(s): n/a

History of Ancient Syria-Palestine
AS.130.301 (01)

A survey of the history of Ancient Syria and Canaan, including Ancient Israel.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 9/15
  • PosTag(s): n/a

Jewish and Christian mysticism in the Middle Ages and the Early Modern Period
AS.100.268 (01)

This course will trace the historical development of Jewish and Christian mysticism between the 12th and the 17th centuries.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Lower Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 15/18
  • PosTag(s): HIST-EUROPE, HIST-MIDEST, INST-GLOBAL, INST-NWHIST

Arab-Israeli Conflict (IR)
AS.191.335 (01)

The course will focus on the origin and development of the Arab-Israeli conflict from its beginnings when Palestine was controlled by the Ottoman Empire, through World War I, The British Mandate over Palestine, and the first Arab-Israeli war (1947-1949). It will then examine the period of the Arab-Israeli wars of 1956, 1967, 1973, and 1982, the Palestinian Intifadas (1987-1993 and 2000-2005); and the development of the Arab-Israeli peace process from its beginnings with the Egyptian-Israeli treaty of 1979, the Oslo I and Oslo II agreements of 1993 and 1995, Israel's peace treaty with Jordan of 1994, the Road Map of 2003; and the periodic peace talks between Israel and Syria. The conflict will be analyzed against the background of great power intervention in the Middle East, the rise of political Islam and the dynamics of Intra-Arab politics, and will consider the impact of the Arab Spring.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 11/35
  • PosTag(s): INST-IR, INST-CP, ISLM-ISLMST

Elementary Yiddish I
AS.210.163 (01)

Year-long course. Includes the four language skills, reading,writing, listening, and speaking, and introduces students to Yiddish culture through text, song, and film. Emphasis is placed both on the acquisition of Yiddish as a tool for the study of Yiddish literature and Ashkenazic history and culture, and on the active use of the language in oral and written communication. Both semesters must be taken with a passing grade to receive credit. Students wishing to retain credits for Elementary Yiddish I must complete Elementary Yiddish II with a passing grade.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Lower Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 14/17
  • PosTag(s): n/a

Intermediate Yiddish I
AS.210.263 (01)

This course will focus on the Yiddish language as a key to understanding the culture of Yiddish-speaking Jews. Topics in Yiddish literature, cultural history and contemporary culture will be explored through written and aural texts, and these primary sources will be used as a springboard for work on all the language skills: reading, writing, listening, and speaking. Prerequisite: AS.210.164 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Lower Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 10/12
  • PosTag(s): n/a

Third Year Hebrew
AS.384.315 (01)

Designed to maximize comprehension and the spoken language through literary and newspaper excerpts providing the student with the language of an educated Israeli. Cross-listed with Jewish Studies. Final day/time will be determined during the first week of classes based on students’ schedules.

  • Credits: 4.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 12/16
  • PosTag(s): n/a

Second Year Hebrew
AS.384.215 (01)

Designed to enrich vocabulary and provide intensive grammatical review, and enhance fluency in reading, writing and comprehension. Cross-listed with Jewish Studies. Final day/time will be determined during the first week of classes based on students’ schedules.

  • Credits: 4.00
  • Level: Lower Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 11/16
  • PosTag(s): n/a

War in Israeli Arts and Culture
AS.216.373 (02)

In this course we will study the various representations of what functions as one of Israel’s most unifying and yet dividing forces: war. By analyzing literary and cinematic works as well as visual art and popular culture we will attempt to understand the role of war in shaping Israeli society, culture and politics. Topics such as commemoration and mourning, heroism, dissent and protest, trauma and memory and the changing image of the soldier will stand at the center of the course.

  • Credits: 4.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 2/3
  • PosTag(s): GRLL-ENGL, INST-GLOBAL, INST-NWHIST

First Year Hebrew
AS.384.115 (01)

Designed to provide reading and writing mastery, to provide a foundation in Hebrew grammar and to provide basic conversational skills. Cross-listed with Jewish Studies. Final day/time will be determined during the first week of classes based on students’ schedules.

  • Credits: 4.00
  • Level:
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 10/16
  • PosTag(s): n/a

War in Israeli Arts and Culture
AS.216.373 (01)

In this course we will study the various representations of what functions as one of Israel’s most unifying and yet dividing forces: war. By analyzing literary and cinematic works as well as visual art and popular culture we will attempt to understand the role of war in shaping Israeli society, culture and politics. Topics such as commemoration and mourning, heroism, dissent and protest, trauma and memory and the changing image of the soldier will stand at the center of the course.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 2/18
  • PosTag(s): GRLL-ENGL, INST-GLOBAL, INST-NWHIST

Religious Themes in Film and Literature
AS.211.480 (01)

This course would be of interest to anyone who would like to learn about the intersection of religion and modern culture. At the center of the course will stand a close study of the representation of religious themes and their role in modern literature and cinema. The works which we will deal with are not considered religious and yet they include religious themes as part of their narrative, images, language or symbolic meaning. We will trace in various works from various countries and genre, themes such as: divine justice, providence, creation, revelation, the apocalypse, prophecy, sacrifice and religious devotion. We will also study the ways in which Biblical and New Testament stories and figures are represented in these works. The course will have a comparative nature with the aim of learning more about the differences between the literary and cinematic representations.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 1/16
  • PosTag(s): GRLL-ENGL

Berlin Between the Wars: Literature, Art, Music, Film
AS.211.328 (01)

Explore the diverse culture of Berlin during the heyday of modernism. During the Weimar Republic, Berlin became a center for theater, visual arts, film, music, and literature that would have an outsize impact on culture throughout the world and the twentieth century. The thinkers, artists, and writers drawn to interwar Berlin produced a body of work that encapsulates many of the issues of the period: the effect of the modern city on society; “the New Woman”; socialist revolutionary politics; the rise of the Nazis; and economic turmoil. While learning about interwar Berlin's cultural diversity, we will take a special look at works by Jewish writers and artists that engage with the question of ethnic, religious, and national identity in the modern world, specifically in the context of Berlin’s rich Jewish history and the rise of anti-Semitism in the interwar period. All readings will be in translation.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Upper Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 4/15
  • PosTag(s): GRLL-ENGL, GRLL-GERM, INST-GLOBAL

Freshman Seminar: A Thousand Years of Jewish Culture
AS.211.202 (01)

This course will introduce students to the history and culture of Ashkanzi Jews through their vernacular, Yiddish, from the settlement of Jews in German-speaking lands in medieval times to the present day. Particular emphasis will be placed on the responses of Yiddish-speaking Jews to the challenges posed by modernity to a traditional society. In addition to studying a wide range of texts—including fiction, poetry, memoir, song, and film—students will learn how to read the Yiddish alphabet, and will prepare a meal of traditional Ashkenazi dishes. No prior knowledge of Yiddish is necessary for this course.

  • Credits: 3.00
  • Level: Lower Level Undergraduate
  • Status: Open
  • Seats Available: 6/12
  • PosTag(s): GRLL-ENGL, INST-GLOBAL

Course # (Section) Title Day/Times Instructor Room PosTag(s) Info
AS.130.140 (01)Hebrew Bible / Old TestamentMW 12:00PM - 1:15PMLewis, TheodoreMaryland 104
AS.130.216 (01)History of the Jews in Modern Times, from the Middle Ages to 1917TTh 10:30AM - 11:45AMKatz, DavidSmokler Center 213INST-GLOBAL, INST-NWHIST
AS.100.339 (01)In the Land of Others: Minorities in the Pre-Modern MediterraneanTTh 1:30PM - 2:45PMGlazer-Eytan, YonatanGilman 400HIST-EUROPE
AS.190.344 (01)Seminar In Anti-SemitismM 1:30PM - 3:50PMGinsberg, BenjaminBloomberg 278INST-AP
AS.130.442 (01)Readings - Hebrew ProseTh 12:00PM - 2:30PMEstrada, Justin EugeneGilman 130G
AS.191.315 (01)The Domestic Politics of IsraelTTh 10:30AM - 11:45AMDolinsky, Alona OlgaGilman 413POLI-CP, INST-CP
AS.150.428 (01)Spinoza’s Theological Political TreatiseTh 10:30AM - 1:00PMMelamed, Yitzhak YohananGilman 288INST-PT
AS.130.440 (01)Elementary Biblical HebrewTTh 10:30AM - 11:45AMEstrada, Justin EugeneMSE Library D1
AS.130.301 (01)History of Ancient Syria-PalestineF 2:00PM - 4:30PMLauinger, JacobGilman 130G
AS.100.268 (01)Jewish and Christian mysticism in the Middle Ages and the Early Modern PeriodWF 3:00PM - 4:15PMMaciejko, Pawel TadeuszGilman 400HIST-EUROPE, HIST-MIDEST, INST-GLOBAL, INST-NWHIST
AS.191.335 (01)Arab-Israeli Conflict (IR)T 4:00PM - 6:30PMFreedman, RobertShaffer 2INST-IR, INST-CP, ISLM-ISLMST
AS.210.163 (01)Elementary Yiddish IT 3:00PM - 4:35PM, Th 9:00AM - 10:15AMLang, BeatriceGilman 443
AS.210.263 (01)Intermediate Yiddish ITTh 10:30AM - 11:45AMLang, BeatriceGilman 443
AS.384.315 (01)Third Year HebrewTW 12:00PM - 1:15PM, Th 12:00PM - 12:50PMCohen, ZviSmokler Center 213
AS.384.215 (01)Second Year HebrewMW 9:30AM - 10:45AM, F 1:00PM - 1:50PMCohen, ZviSmokler Center 213
AS.216.373 (02)War in Israeli Arts and CultureTTh 10:30AM - 11:45AMCohen, Zvi, Stahl, NetaGilman 479GRLL-ENGL, INST-GLOBAL, INST-NWHIST
AS.384.115 (01)First Year HebrewTTh 9:00AM - 10:15AM, F 12:00PM - 12:50PMCohen, ZviSmokler Center 213
AS.216.373 (01)War in Israeli Arts and CultureTTh 10:30AM - 11:45AMStahl, NetaGilman 479GRLL-ENGL, INST-GLOBAL, INST-NWHIST
AS.211.480 (01)Religious Themes in Film and LiteratureTTh 12:00PM - 1:15PMStahl, NetaHodson 216GRLL-ENGL
AS.211.328 (01)Berlin Between the Wars: Literature, Art, Music, FilmW 1:30PM - 4:00PMSpinner, Samuel JacobBloomberg 172GRLL-ENGL, GRLL-GERM, INST-GLOBAL
AS.211.202 (01)Freshman Seminar: A Thousand Years of Jewish CultureTTh 1:30PM - 2:45PMLang, BeatriceGilman 443GRLL-ENGL, INST-GLOBAL