JBuzz News April 30, 2013: Alvin Rosenfeld: Jewish Studies Program founder awarded Indiana University Bloomington Provost’s Medal

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Jewish Studies Program founder awarded IU Bloomington Provost’s Medal

Source: Indiana University, 4-30-13

Indiana University Bloomington Provost and Executive Vice President Lauren Robel has presented the Provost’s Medal to Alvin Rosenfeld, a distinguished scholar of literature and Holocaust studies who established the university’s Jewish Studies program and led it for decades.

Robel presented the medal at a celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Robert A. and Sandra S. Borns Jewish Studies Program at IU Bloomington. Rosenfeld is the Irving M. Glazer Chair of Jewish Studies and a professor of English and Jewish studies in the College of Arts and Sciences….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 30, 2013: Pope Francis and Israeli President Shimon Peres: Hopes for resumption of peace talks

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Pope and Israeli President : Hopes for resumption of peace talks

Source: Vatican Radio, 4-30-13

Pope Francis on Tuesday received in audience at the Vatican the Israeli President Shimon Peres and held talks on a variety of issues concerning the Middle East. President Peres also met the Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertoni and Archbishop Dominque Mamberti, Secretary of Relations with States.

Please find below an English translation of the official communique on the talks released afterwards by the Holy See’s Press Office:

“During the cordial talks, the political and social situation in the Middle East—where more than a few conflicts persist—was addressed. A speedy resumption of negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians is hoped for, so that, with the courageous decisions and availability of both sides as well as support from the international community, an agreement may be reached that respects the legitimate aspirations of the two Peoples, thus decisively contributing to the peace and stability of the region. Reference to the important issue of the City of Jerusalem was not overlooked. Particular worry for the conflict that plagues Syria was expressed, for which a political solution is hoped for that privileges the logic of reconciliation and dialogue.

A number of issues concerning relations between the State of Israel and the Holy See and between state authorities and the local Catholic communities were also addressed. In conclusion, the significant progress made by the Bilateral Working Commission, which is preparing an agreement regarding issues of common interest, was appreciated and its rapid conclusion is foreseen.”

Following Tuesday’s meeting between Pope Francis and President Peres, Israel’s Ambassador to the Holy See, Zion Evrony spoke to Vatican Radio’s Susy Hodges about their talks and in particular about the stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace process, the Syrian conflict and the long-standing bilateral talks between Israel and the Holy See on tax and economic issues.

Listen to the extended interview with Ambassador Evrony by Susy Hodges: RealAudioMP3

Ambassador Evrony says Israel “really hopes” for an early resumption of the stalled peace process between the Jewish state and the Palestinians. “There’s nothing that that the people of Israel want more than peace … peace with our Palestinian neighbours is one of our main goals,” he says.

Ambassador Evrony also talks about Israel’s concerns over the Syrian conflict, saying the crisis there “is first and foremost a humanitarian crisis.” “It is tragic,” he continues, “to see the bloodshed and human suffering and see a brutal dictator massacre his own people.” The Israeli Ambassador also spoke of his country’s concern about the issue of chemical weapons in Syria and said he is worried that “these chemical weapons could end up in the wrong hands.”

Turning to the question of the bilateral discussions between Israel and the Holy See over various economic and tax issues, Ambassador Evrony said “there was reason to be optimistic” concerning these long-standing issues although he added “there is still some work to be done” before a final conclusion can be reached.

JBuzz News April 29, 2013: Israel Museum & the Metropolitan Museum of Art buy Maimonides medieval Jewish manuscript

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Museums buy Steinhardts’ medieval Jewish manuscript

Source: JTA, 4-29-13

The Israel Museum in Jerusalem and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York jointly bought a medieval religious text by Rabbi Moshe Maimonides….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 25, 2013: First look inside luminous Museum of the History of Polish Jews

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First look inside luminous Museum of the History of Polish Jews

Source: Jweekly.com, 4-25-13

“This was a world in color,” said Jewish studies professor Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett, speaking of the 1,000-year Jewish presence in Poland, “and not the black and white we know from photographs.” She made her point last week in Warsaw….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 25, 2013: Jerusalem Court Upholds Ruling in Women of the Wall Case

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Jerusalem Court Upholds Ruling in Women of the Wall Case

Source: NYT, 4-25-13

Rejecting an appeal by the police, the court ruled that five women detained for wearing men’s-style prayer shawls and singing at the Western Wall were not disturbing the peace….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 18, 2013: Museum of Polish Jews: Polish Museum Repairs a Tie to a Jewish Past

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Polish Museum Repairs a Tie to a Jewish Past

Source: NYT, 4-18-13

Among civic leaders in Warsaw, a new Jewish museum is seen as a major step toward recognizing Poland’s Jewish past and recovering from its 20th-century traumas….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 18, 2013: Marci Shore: The Jewish Hero History Forgot — 70th Anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising

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The Jewish Hero History Forgot

Source: NYT, 4-18-13

Raymond Verdaguer

SEVENTY years ago today, a group of young men and women fired the shots that began the largest single act of Jewish resistance during the Holocaust.

The Warsaw Ghetto uprising is rightly commemorated — through books, memoirs and movies — as an extraordinary act of courage in the face of near-certain death. Those who fought in the ghetto provide the iconic image of heroism, and an antidote to images of Jews being led to the gas chambers….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 15, 2013: Borns Jewish Studies Program at Indiana University marks 40th anniversary

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Borns Jewish Studies Program at Indiana University marks 40th anniversary

Source: Indiana University, 4-15-13

A special concert featuring world-renowned pianist Menahem Pressler and Friends will highlight the 40th anniversary celebration of the Robert A. and Sandra S. Borns Jewish Studies Program at Indiana University Bloomington….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 11, 2013: University of California Berkeley: Filling an ‘appetite for Jewish learning’

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Filling an ‘appetite for Jewish learning’

Source: JWeekly, 4-11-13

U.C. Berkeley has a large Jewish student body, and no lack of Jewish faculty members. But the university offers no undergraduate major in Jewish studies, an indication of the limited opportunities for advanced study and research in the field. While other high-level ethnic studies programs have flourished at the school — students can major in Asian American studies, Native American studies or Chicano/Latino studies, for example — the field of Jewish studies has lagged behind.

U.C. Berkeley now has a growing number of Jewish studies courses.

U.C. Berkeley now has a growing number of Jewish studies courses.

That changed two years ago with the founding of the Berkeley Institute for Jewish Law and Israeli Law, Economy and Society — an interdisciplinary institute created to expand offerings and elevate the level of Jewish and Israeli studies on campus….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 9, 2013: Laurel Leff: How, and why, some Jewish scholars were left behind

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How, and why, some Jewish scholars were left behind

Source: News@Northeastern, 4-9-13

Northeastern Holocaust Commemoration

At the Northeastern Holocaust Commemoration, Bernard A. Stotsky Professor Laurel Leff (right) explained that American universities had one of the few lifelines to extend to refugees fleeing Europe to escape Nazi persecutions, but they didn’t do enough. Photos by Brooks Canaday.

During the 1930s and early 1940s, fac­ulty posi­tions offered by Amer­ican uni­ver­si­ties served as one of the few life­lines for hun­dreds of thou­sands of scholars trying to flee war-​​torn Europe to escape per­se­cu­tion. Yet far too often, the uni­ver­si­ties didn’t do enough to save these refugees and even offered chill­ingly dis­mis­sive rea­sons for not doing so, according to Laurel Leff, asso­ciate pro­fessor in the School of Jour­nalism and the Bernard A. Stotsky Pro­fessor of Jewish His­tor­ical and Cul­tural Studies at Northeastern….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 8, 2013: Holocaust marked at Auschwitz March of Living

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Holocaust marked at Auschwitz March of Living

Source: Jerusalem Post, 4-8-13

“They (Jews persecuted in the Holocaust) live within us, we live with what happened to them,” he continued. Moving on to what Peres described as the “peak” he said, “In a short time, in three years the greatest miracle occurred….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 5, 2013: 6 survivors to represent 6 million at Yad VaShem Holocaust Rememberance Day / Yom HaShoah ceremony

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6 survivors to represent 6 million at Holocaust ceremony

Source: Ynetnews, 4-5-13

Entitled “uprising and rebellion in the Holocaust” and on the backdrop of the 70th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, Sunday evening will open Holocaust Remembrance Day activities and the main ceremony at the Warsaw Ghetto Square at Yad VaShem….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 2, 2013: 11,000 youths to attend March of the Living for Holocaust Remembrance Day

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11,000 youths to attend March of the Living

IDF chief of staff, Israeli ambassador to Warsaw, to join Jews from around the world at Auschwitz concentration camp to mark Holocaust anniversary.

Source: JPost, 4-2-13

March of the Living in Polish cemetery

March of the Living in Polish cemetery Photo: Yossi Zeilger

Eleven thousand young people will take part in this year’s Holocaust Remembrance Day activities at the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland under the auspices of the March of the Living program.

The participants, who are mostly Jewish, hail from over 50 countries, including Morocco, Turkey, France, the United States and Canada, said march spokesman Yoram Dori.

Among those participating in this year’s remembrances at the death camp will be IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz, former chief rabbi Israel Meir Lau, World Jewish Congress President Ronald Lauder and Zvi Ravner, Israel’s Ambassador to Poland….READ MORE

JBuzz News April 2, 2013: Belarus to build Jewish museum inside old synagogue

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Belarus to build Jewish museum inside old synagogue

Source: JTA, 4-2-13

The government of Belarus said it will renovate one of the country’s oldest synagogues and turn it into a Jewish museum….READ MORE