Limmud Festival 2017

Limmud Festival 2017 – Monday 10:40

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Beyond the binary: gender diversity in the Jewish community

Dex Grodner  Zohar Mendzelevski-Steinberg 

Red 3

A panel discussion with gender nonconforming, nonbinary and genderqueer Jews followed by a Q&A.

Build me a Sanctuary

Michael Even David 

Green 27

We will go back through time to visit the Temple Mount in its glory during the Second Temple Period. We will do a virtual tour and accompany the priests in a normal day of work, learning what modern archaeology has taught us about the holiest place in Earth

Creating a visual pantheon of Jewish figures in modern times

Richard Cohen 

Green 25

We will discuss the ways in which 19th century artists of Jewish origin turned to historical figures to present an interpretation of Jewish history. Among the figures to be discussed: Jesus, Spinoza, Uriel Da Costa, Moses Mendelssohn, and Herzl. Among the artists who treated these figures: Oppenheim, Hirszenberg, Gottlieb, Liebermann.

Degenerate: the most infamous art exhibition ever held

Naomi Verber 

Orange 10

In 1937 the Nazis staged The Degenerate Art Exhibition to ridicule hundreds of artists, many of them Jews. They inadvertently created the greatest collection of modern art ever to be held under one roof, causing a sensation in the art world and wider public. Naomi will look at the collection, the response and the fate of the artists and paintings.

Four Jewish new years - Beit Midrash beginners (1 of 4)

Roni Tabick 

Red 9

Rosh Hashana is the Jewish new year, but according to the Mishna there are 3 others. What does a 'new year mean'? How do we measure time? Come and have your first taste of studying rabbinic texts, and experience the richness of our tradition.

Funny for Five at Festival

Rachel Creeger 

Blue 32

Ever wanted to try stand up comedy? Rachel’s run comedy gigs for 7 years and seen acts with great material they can’t deliver, personality but poor writing, and the magical few with outstanding wordplay and awesome performance. This session looks at developing your comedy voice, stage presence, and crafting a 5 min set to perform in Millers bar!

Give me Yavneh and her Sages (Experienced Morning Intensive) (1 of 4)

Joseph Israel  Benjamin Stanley 

Red 9

In this session, we will analyse the origins of the Yavneh Academy in the wake of the destruction of the Second Temple, and explore its founder, Yochanan Ben Zakai. What is his vision and who are his potential successors? This is part of the Bet Midrash morning intensive, for learners with some experience, looking to get close to texts.

How to be a human - social action (1 of 3)

Matt Plen 

Orange 11

Jewish social activists of different political and religious stripes are united by the aim of helping every individual realise their humanity. Being human means taking action - what philosophers call praxis. We'll explore what this meant for Aristotle, Maimonides and Marx and why it should be part of every social activist's intellectual tool kit.

Noam Shalit in conversation with Leah Golan

Leah Golan  Noam Shalit 

Orange 15

Leah Golan, head of the Jewish Agency delegation in UK, will speak with Noam Shalit about the campaign inside Israel that was mounted in order to bring Gilad Shalit home, and will explore some of the ethical dilemmas involved in his story.

Israel and antisemitism

David Hirsh  Simon Plosker  Avi Mayer  Lahav Harkov 

Red 1

Is the Israeli government's response to antisemitism around the world helping or hurting? How do other Israelis feel about antisemitism?

Jesus and Judaism: Jesus the Jewish storyteller (2 of 4)

Amy-Jill Levine 

Red 4

Jesus told the parables of "Good Samaritan”, “Pharisee and the Tax Collector,” and “Prodigal Son” to fellow Jews. Recovering that original setting corrects their frequent anti-Jewish interpretations, provides a grounding for better Jewish/Christian relations, and offers profound insight into both ancient and contemporary social relations.

Jewish spiritual direction practicum

Sheila Weinberg 

Red 7

Beginning with a short Hasidic text we will discuss the practice of spiritual direction and how it has become a Jewish practice. Participants will move into pairs and be guided in cultivating attention as the seeker and then as the guide. There will be an opportunity for reflection and questions.

Judaism in the science classroom

Josh Martin 

Red 2

As a teacher in a Jewish school it felt important that the Jewish ethos pervaded my lessons. As a science teacher this could sometimes lead to difficult questions being asked. This session will explore some of the more and less flippant ways that I blended Jewish thoughts and texts into lessons, and maybe teach some science too.

KeshetUK diversity and LGBT inclusion training

Alma Reisel  Dalia Fleming 

Purple 31

KeshetUK runs training seminars offering theory and tools to make Jewish spaces more welcoming and inclusive for LGBT+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) members. This is a taster session from these seminars. This session covers: language and terminology for discussing gender and sexuality and exploring power and privilege. This is a double session.

Lebanon or Bust - tales from north of the border

Richard Miron 

Yellow 23

This is a first-person storytelling of Richard’s experiences in Lebanon, as a reporter and then with the UN. It begins in Israel where childhood summers were spent with family on a kibbutz close to the border, and tells of later ventures with Hezbollah in Beirut, in the badlands of Southern Lebanon and elsewhere. There will be time for questions.

Limmud Book Club: Chess (2 of 4)

Shoshi Ish-Horowicz  Aviva Dautch 

Yellow 22

This stand-alone session is a chance for book lovers to share insights. We will discuss our favourite extracts, characters and theories - for those who've already read the book and those who haven't but want to find out more. Today’s choice is Stephan Zweig’s classic novella ‘Chess’, a powerful tale of obsession and survival.

My grandfather: refugee, anti-apartheid leader, Mandela’s top diplomat.

Adam Schwarz 

Orange 12

The extraordinary story of the late Harry Schwarz, a refugee from Nazism who became one of South Africa’s leading anti-apartheid figures and top diplomat during its transition to democracy, as told by his grandson through some of Schwarz’s most dramatic photos that also tell South Africa’s story, from the Second World War to the fall of Apartheid.

Nimrod – the first dictator

Raphael Zarum 

Yellow 24

I'm fascinated by lesser known biblical characters. Nimrod, mentioned briefly in Genesis, was viewed by the Sages as the first ever king, with all the power and control that that entails. Here’s what we’ll endeavour to answer: Was he real? Where was he from? Where did he rule? What is his legacy?

Noah and righteousness: have our values changed in 3000 years?

Joshua G Townsend 

Red 6

This session explores Noah as a man "righteous in his own time". We will explore the passage in terms of ancient and contemporary sources and what this can mean for us today.

The Dead Sea Scrolls, Judaism and Christianity

Lawrence Schiffman 

Green 26

This illustrated lecture will deal with the contents of the ancient library from Qumran, known as the Dead Sea Scrolls and its significance for understanding the Bible, rabbinic Judaism and early Christianity.

Under the heel of Hirohito

Jackie Passman 

Blue 33

My father was one of the many prisoners captured by the Japanese when Singapore fell in 1942. This session is based on his objective, distressing but occasionally humorous diary which recorded the deprivations of Changi camp, the unbelievable hardships for the POWs who built the Thai-Burma railway and the Jewish life that flourished despite it all.

Where is Kovno? The journey back

Yda Walt 

Blue 34

Artist Yda Walt presents her journey back to Lithuania, the country where her grandparents came from before they settled in South Africa. From this trip, she and two other artists created Where is Kovno? A multimedia art installation that was first shown in Lithuania in 2009 and Johannesburg in 2017.

Who is Rabbi Akiva? Legend and law (1 of 4)

Dena Weiss 

Red 9

Rabbi Akiva is one of the most well-known rabbis of the Talmud. In this session, aimed toward those with basic experience learning rabbinic texts in the original, we'll try to meet Rabbi Akiva on his own terms. Do we think we know him as well as we think we do? What is his approach to the world, to the Torah, and to his own story?

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