JUDAIC 205 - What is Judaism?
Fall 2018, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: Judaic Studies (JUDAIC)
Department: LSA Judaic Studies


Requirements & Distribution:
Credit Exclusions:
No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in JUDAIC 505 or HJCS 576.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:


This course provides a sweeping overview of the rise and development of Jewish civilization from its origins to the present. Students will gain insight into the remarkable diversity that has marked Jewish culture and religious expression throughout its more than 3000-year history in various regions across the globe. Our premise is that Jewish civilization must be understood as a dynamic set of traditions, texts, beliefs, ideas, and practices that have developed through interaction and dialogue with surrounding cultures. We will explore a range of cultural strategies that have enabled Jews to adapt to changing historical conditions and that have given new meanings to the meaning of Jewish identity. Our method of study will involve a close study of selected primary sources, from biblical and rabbinic texts to philosophical works and autobiographies.

Course Requirements:

Requirements include weekly responses to readings, three quizzes, a primary source analysis, and a final exam.

Intended Audience:

No previous knowledge of Judaism or Jewish history is required or expected.

Class Format:

What is Judaism? is taught by an interdisciplinary team: the primary instructor provides the general framework in introductory lectures for each unit and U-M specialists in Judaic Studies offer guest lectures on a range of topics pertaining to Jewish history, religion, and culture. Discussion sessions provide the opportunity for direct contact with primary sources and for conversation.


JUDAIC 205 - What is Judaism?
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
 In Person
MW 10:00AM - 11:30AM
002 (DIS)
 In Person
W 4:00PM - 5:00PM
003 (DIS)
 In Person
F 11:00AM - 12:00PM

Textbooks/Other Materials

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Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

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