Jewish History

Jewish History

The study of the social, political, cultural, and religious history of the Jewish people is one of the most dynamic areas of modern historical research and teaching.  At the University of Maryland, our courses range chronologically from biblical to rabbinic, from medieval to modern and contemporary.  Faculty specialties include the Land of Israel in late antiquity, Italy in the early modern period, the Jews of Central Europe in the nineteenth and twentieth century, and the Holocaust.  Both at the undergraduate and graduate levels, students can study such issues as the relationship of Jews and non-Jews, the changing nature of Jewish identity, how Jews have functioned as a minority group in diverse cultures in the Middle East, Europe, and the Americas, and how Jews have transformed Jewish culture in response to the challenges posed by the societies in which they have lived.  Students can draw on the rich resources of the University’s Meyerhoff Center for Jewish Studies (to which Jewish history faculty also belong) and the Gildenhorn Institute for Israel Studies, which offer courses on the Hebrew Bible, the Dead Sea Scrolls, medieval and modern Jewish philosophy, Hebrew and other Jewish literatures and film, and Israeli society, culture, and politics.  Rich library holdings at the University, as well as libraries, archives, and research centers in the Washington area, make the University of Maryland an exciting place to study and do research in Jewish history.