Limmud Conference 2016

Limmud Conference 2016 – Monday 13:15

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The American Jewish community: culture and politics

Aylana Meisel 

Blue 34

This will provide an overview of the American Jewish community: its sub-communities, their cultural identities and political orientations, and their prospects for survival in the years to come. The lecture will include a mix of research and anecdotal experience from a Jewish communal professional.

Messianism and mercantilism: The readmission of Anglo-Jewry (2 of 2)

Shalom Morris 

Green 25

The 17th century was a period in transition. Part medieval, part modern, these decades witnessed the emergence of the British Empire, the decline of sectarian violence, and the establishment of an Anglo-Jewish community. We examine the primary Jewish texts that were at the heart of this emerging world. Part two - Jewish Attitudes: The Messianic Treatise of Menasse ben Israel.

Politician and personality, pragmatist and philosopher: the life and legacy of Shimon Peres

Michael Freeman 

Orange 15

Earlier this year we lost the last of Israel's founding statesmen, Shimon Peres. A man who was involved in the politics and decision making from pre-state times until his death. In this session we will look at his life and examine his legacy; where did he succeed and what was the lasting impression he left on Israel the Middle East and the world.

My son the portfolio careerist - work and careers in the 21st century

Hannah Brady  Chaim Weiner  Keith Kahn-Harris  Nick Gendler  Sara Kyte 

Purple 31

The conventional career is a thing of the past. Portfolio careers and serial careerism rather than a job for life describes work today for many of us. Our panel will discuss how expectations and reality for Jews in the workplace are changing and what work might look like for people entering the job market for the first time.

Was Darth Vader King David's father?

Garry Wayland 

Blue 33

King David is the 'sweet singer of Israel', yet underwent some of the most painful struggles in Tanach, experiencing some of the inner turmoils reminiscent of one of the most iconic characters in modern cinema.

Unorthodox: Screening and Q&A (120 minutes)

Anna Wexler  Samuel Lebens 

Orange 13

Unorthodox (2013) is a feature-length documentary film that follows three rebellious Modern Orthodox Jewish teenagers from the US as they spend a post-high school year studying in a seminary in Israel. The film is framed by co-director Anna Wexler’s own story of leaving the faith. Screening to be followed by Q&A with Anna.

The greatest ever Jewish experience - showing at a shul near you...

Michael Laitner 

Red 3

The Revelation and giving of Torah at Mount Sinai was our greatest national experience, which we have held onto tenaciously. We will examine how shul services, settings, the prayers and Torah reading carry a collective message, memory and experience all the way back to Mount Sinai, inspiring us today and into the future.

The east of London - yesterday, today, tomorrow!

Nizza Fluss 

Marquee 2

Nizza's family business has been located in the East End of London for over 60 years, and she herself has worked there for the last 19. As a child, Nizza would eat at the local kosher chippie; as an adult, she works across the road from the biggest mosque in Europe. A keen photographer, this session will explore how the area has changed.

Text and the city (1 of 2)

Michael Wegier 

Yellow 21

Jews love cities and very quickly after settling in them, writers absorb their environment and begin incorporating and creating the cultural vibes into their prose and poetry. These two sessions will explore the literature of London, New York, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

Strive to be a mentch – the world according to Pirkei Avot

Daniel Goldfarb 

Red 8 (Boulevard Back)

Pirkei Avot is one of the greatest Jewish texts, but we don’t often explore the larger philosophy of life hidden behind the somewhat random collection of statements. Hishtadel l’hiot ish, Hillel says in 2:6, strive to be a good/worthy person. Easier said than done? We’ll unpack this together, and depart a tad more mentchadik, hopefully.

Shira Britannia: let it flow...

David Hoffman  Judith Silver 

Red 7

Judith and David, founder members and representatives of Shira Britannia, present some of their own settings and those of other members of the co-operative. We'll think about how to weave new melodies into a service so that it flows, use different settings to create different moods and when/why to choose a new or a familiar melody.

Power and corruption in the Book of Samuel

Shmuel Klitsner 

Red 5

The Dead Sea Scrolls, the Biblical text, and literary allusions and foreshadowings. An interactive text based study that explores the hidden meanings and political and ethical agenda of the story of Saul, Israel’s first monarch.

Palmyra - the Jewish legacy: Syria and beyond

Adam Blitz 

Orange 14

This sessions explores the Jewish legacy of Palmyra: the UNESCO World Heritage site located in the Syrian desert where the cross-roads of the Hellenistic, Roman and Parthian empires once met. Though subject to much news coverage, little attention has been paid to Palmyra's Jewish past and the early attempts of Julius Euting (1883) to document it.

Is there such a thing anymore as a single Jewish people?

Haviv Gur 

Red 2

The two largest Jewish communities, America's and Israel's, together making up 80% of the world's Jews, share little in common in their history, language, geography, culture, calendar, even religious life - and are drifting apart into mutually unintelligible civilisations. This will have profound consequences for us all.

International Law and Jewish Settlements in the West Bank: Illegal Colonization or Protected Human Rights?

Abraham Bell 

Green 26

It's often taken for granted that the Jewish settlements in the West Bank are illegal under international law. But while this might be a convenient platitude, is it actually true? You know the opinion of diplomats and the media, but here's an opportunity to hear from an actual legal scholar.

How can Muslims and Jews coexist?

Toni Rickenback  Thabet Abu Rass  Raheel Raza  Ronald Kronish  Mike Prashker 

Red 1

Jews and Muslims have a common heritage and in some ways a shared history. Jews lived for centuries in Muslim lands with varying degrees of acceptance. All this changed with the movement of Jews to Palestine and the creation of Israel. Going forward how can Muslims and Jews coexist in the Middle East and the rest of the world?

Homosexuals in the Orthodox world and the halachic concept of oness

Zev Farber 

Yellow 24

The Orthodox world is struggling to accomodate homosexuals, including homosexual couples, in its communities but is having trouble finding the right halachic language. A little known theoretical precedent about a half-free half-slave woman in the Talmud may be of help.

History and new trends in Jewish vegetarianism

Sarah Chandler  Lara Smallman 

Red 4

From Queen Esther to the 10th Israeli president Ruvi Rivlin, Jews have chosen vegetarianism for a plethora of reasons ranging from ethical to religious to environmental. Hear the surprising and inspiring stories of Jewish vegetarians from throughout history from two of the top Jewish vegetarians leaders in the modern Jewish world.

Hebrew manuscripts digitisation project: what's next?

Miri Lewis 

Green 27

In July 2016, 1,302 manuscripts from The British Library's Hebrew collection were published online. As well as presenting an update on the project and how to access the collection, this interactive workshop explores the benefits of digitisation and the different creative ways that people can use it for their own interests, research and enjoyment.

Free choice: forbidden fruit - was it worth it? (1 of 3)

Nahum Gordon 

Orange 10

A walk through Paradise Garden in which we consider the choices exercised by Eve and Adam, and the consequences of their actions.

Contemporary Israeli religious poetry

Diti Ronen 

Red 6

A new and very interesting genre in Israeli poetry. It started off with almost exclusively male poets giving expression to their religious experiences and feelings. Today there are many fascinating voices of women and men, who write wonderful religious poetry. A small anthology in English will be prepared for this session.

Chanukah origami

Shira Solomons 

Blue 32 (Millers)

As it is Chanukah at Limmud, this year we will make a sevivon (dreidel), a chanukiyah (menorah), a magen david (star of David) and other favourites. All from a piece of paper! This session is suitable for both individuals and families.


Jane Ansell 

Yellow 22

Autism affects many of the Jewish population. Understanding more about it would help those with ASD and their families to become more included in schools, shuls and the outside world. This session provides an introduction to autism, for those families struggling with autism and people who want to make this world a more inclusive one.

Around the world in 7 tales

Eliran Douenias  Perry Teicher  Shana Boltin  Hannah Gaventa  Georgina Bye  Talia Blank 

Orange 11

7 Jews, 7 countries, 7 unique experiences, 1 interactive panel. Tales of relief and rescue work in Haiti, Nepal and the Philippines, Jewish community in Estonia and Finland, Latin America and beyond. This is your chance to hear about Jewish communities around the world and what Jewish organisations are doing to support others in need.

Depression in Jewish sources

Claire Hilton  Michael Hilton 

Orange 12

"One who suffers from melancholia may rid himself of it by listening to singing and all kinds of instrumental music, by strolling through beautiful gardens and splendid buildings, by gazing upon beautiful shapes, and other things that enliven the mind, and dissipate gloomy moods." (Maimonides, Shemonah Perakim).

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