Conference on Ultra-Orthodoxy:Van Leer Institute

For those in Teaneck who read this in the next two hours, Prof James Kugel will be the scholar in residence this Shabat Dec 28-29 at Davar- 1500 Sussex: Friday night at 4:20pm – talk #1 Regarding the Dead Sea Scrolls; Saturday morning talk #2 Joseph’s Change of Heart in pre-rabbinic midrash; Saturday afternoon at 4:00pm – talk # 3 Modern Biblical Scholarship and Traditional Judaism: a discussion. For those in Jerusalem, these will be a conference on Ultra-Orthodoxy- program below. If anyone want to blog it then let me know.

Conference on Ultra-Orthodoxy: Between Modernity and Post-Modernity
Monday-Tuesday, 31 December 2012-1 January 2013,
The Van Leer Jerusalem Institute– 43 Jabotinky Street, Jerusalem Tel.

Ultra-Orthodoxy emerged in European Jewish society as a reaction to modernity and was an outgrowth of the processes whereby Orthodox communities were consolidating in defense against the challenges of an open society. This led to innumerable struggles and divisiveness, to great successes but also to catastrophic failures bordering on total disintegration. These processes were contradictory and complex and they included intra-Jewish events, among them conflicts with modern Jewish movements, as well as external political events that had a decisive influence on the fate of the Jews. During the second half of the twentieth century these communities took root, enjoying enormous growth; their influence spread over the entire Jewish people in Israel and the Diaspora.
It is apparent that, contrary to expectations, the postmodernist era gave added impetus to the influence of ultra-Orthodox communities despite the great variety and differences between them.

Monday, December 31, 2012
10:30 – 11:15
Opening Session
Menachem Friedman, The Unclear Distinction between Orthodoxy and Ultra-Orthodoxy

11:30 – 13:00
Trends and Transformations
Chair: Yosef Salmon

David Sorotzkin, Jewish Orthodoxy in Early Modern Europe and the Formation of 19th-Century Ultra-Orthodoxy

Chaim I. Waxman, The Americanization of Ultra-Orthodox Jewry

Shlomo Tikochinski, The Haredi Community in Israel: Convention, Ethos and Myth

14:15 – 16:15
Theology, Halakhah and Custom
Chair: Arye Edrei

Levi Cooper, Commitment and Creativity: Custom in the Writing of Rabbi Hayim Elazar Shapira of Munkács

Iris Brown, Conservative Rhetoric, Liberal Practice: The Leadership of R. Zalman Leib Halberstam of Sanz-Klausenburg

Harel Gordin, The Shaping of Orthodoxy in Post-World War II America as Reflected in R. Moshe Feinstein’s Responsa

Nicham Ross, The Divine Response to Modernity: Why the Holocaust Occurred Precisely in the 20th Century

16:30 – 17:30
Anti-Zionism in Education and Diplomacy
Chair: Aviad Hacohen

Yair Halevy, The Extreme Section in “Neturei Karta” and its Alternative Diplomacy

Sima Zalcberg Block, Game Theory: Games as Socialization Agents among Youngsters in Groups of Radical Zealots

17:45 – 19:45
Chair: Dafna Schreiber

Uriel Barak, Remarks on the Relationship between Rabbi Yaakov Moshe Harlap and the “Zealots of Jerusalem”

Adam Ferziger, Hungarian Separatist Orthodoxy and its Contested American Legacy

Gershon Greenberg, Alienated Forever: Neturei Karta and Agudat Yisrael Face the Historical Reality of the Holocaust (English)

Ido Harari, Tekhelet in Jerusalem: The Blue Thread in the Tzitzit between R. Akiva Yosef Schlesinger and R. Yeshaya Asher Zelig Margaliot

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

10:15 – 12:15
New Haredism
Chair:Haviva Pedaya
Nissim Leon, Haredi Modernization of the Traditional Prayer Book of Mizrachi Jewry
Shlomi Doron, The Ultra-Orthodox Repentance Movement: Between Modern and Post-Modern
Lee Cahaner & Haim Zicherman, From Individuals to a Group: Modern Ultra-Orthodox Middle Class
Batia Siebzehner, Ultra-Orthodoxy and Ethnicity: Reshaping the Community’s Boundaries in Mexico and Panama

12:30 – 14:00
From Orthodoxy to Ultra-Orthodoxy and Back
Chair: Yoram Bilu

Yaakov Ariel, The Counter-Culture and Ultra-Orthodoxy Unite: The Unexpected Rise of Neo-Hasidism

Samuel Heilman, How Modern Orthodoxy Inevitably Evolved into Haredi Orthodoxy

Gili Zivan, The Disengagement as a Catalyst for Ultra-Orthodox anti-Zionist Developments

15:00 – 16:30
The Gender Challenge: Coping with Gender Issues
Chair: Rachel Elior

Nava Vasserman, The Abstinent Society: The Idea and Practice of Sexual
Abstinence in the Gur Hasidic Community

Yoel Finkelman, Men and Masculinity in Contemporary Haredi Media

Rivka Neriya-Ben Shahar, Saying without Saying: Ultra-Orthodox Women’s Discourse

16:45 – 18:45
Concluding Session: From Jerusalem to Bnei-Brak
Chair: Menachem Friedman

Marc Shapiro, R. Jacob Israel Kanievsky: The Steipler (English)

Yosef Salmon, The Maharil Diskin: The Beginnings of Ultra-Orthodoxy in the Land of Israel

Benjamin Brown, Bnei Brak and Jerusalem: The Lithuanian Haredi Community’s Leadership in the 1950s: Between the Chazon Ish and the Rabbi of Brisk

7 responses to “Conference on Ultra-Orthodoxy:Van Leer Institute

  1. Would you please report on what Kugel said? Thanks.

    • Shabbat aft- chapter from his book In Potiphar’s House. Saturday afternoon – open q and a, everyone asked general questions; no one asked about core issues. He seems to have retreated from his last book. Now, the correct way to read the Bible is midrashic and he finds the critical approach helpful and interesting. He fully identifies with his four characteristics of Biblical interpretation; he did not claim that we should read it critically. No one pressed further.

  2. Of course it would be subjective, but do you think his illness (and perhaps public outcry) affected his thinking on Tanach?

  3. Which sessions do you think are the most worthwhile to attend? Too many conferences results in too little work on my part.

  4. Yonatan Kaganoff

    Is Van Leer posting the conference online?

  5. i attended a few of the speeches. it was fascinating!

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